Bitmain, which designs application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) chips and manufacturers cryptocurrency miners, is reportedly moving into Ethereum mining by launching a pool that will initially support both Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum Classic (ETC).
The new pool will be managed by the same group responsible for BTC.com, a Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash mining pool that is responsible for 15.4% of the current global hashrate for Bitcoin and 14% of the Bitcoin Cash network.
We expect mining operations to grow to 12 [percent] of ETH total hashrate in the next 12 months.
This will undoubtedly have a significant impact on the profitability of ETH mining, which is a favorite among amateur miners. The flood of global hashrate will likely push many of these miners away from the Ethereum to a more profitable coin, thus hurting the relative decentralization.
Interestingly, BTC.com plans to pursue this operation, even when Ethereum adopts the Casper Protocol, which will convert ETH consensus from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake.
Zhang explained further, “It’s still possible to host a mining pool in PoS mode. It will increase the complexity to design such a pool since miners need to deposit [E]ther to the mining pool, but we have a lot of hands-on experience with wallet and Ethereum smart contracts to make a PoS mining pool possible.”
While this is a significant development for the Ethereum network, this is likely of small significance to Bitmain at the moment, given that it is currently preparing to raise $18 billion via an IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange at a market cap of $40 to $50 billion.
Disclaimer: This article’s author has cryptocurrency holdings that can be tracked here. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice. Always conduct your own due diligence before making investments.