Samsung’s semiconductor business is booming, with the company recently overtaking Intel as the world’s biggest chipmaker. But the South Korean firm is not resting on its laurels, and is currently looking to expand into the buzziest contemporary market for processors: cryptocurrency mining.
As reported by TechCrunch, Samsung has confirmed it’s in the process of making hardware specially designed for mining cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. A spokesperson for the firm told TechCrunch: “Samsung’s foundry business is currently engaged in the manufacturing of cryptocurrency mining chips. However we are unable to disclose further details regarding our customers.”
Last year, Samsung partnered with a Chinese bitcoin mining equipment manufacturer. Now, when the development of its ASIC chips is finished, China will be the first purchaser of cryptocurrency mining equipment. Despite the fact that Samsung was earlier unsure of the revenues it can generate from ASIC chips, the company plans to expand its mining equipment venture from China to other regions like South Korea and Japan, where the demand for cryptocurrencies is stronger than in other countries.
Bitcoin mining requires high-speed and energy-efficient hardware. The ASIC is a specialized piece of hardware designed to mine cryptocurrencies based on a specific hashing algorithm, such as SHA256 or Scryptan. It makes up a part of the crypto mining device.
Taiwan-based TSMC supplies the ASIC chips needed for cryptocurrency mining to Bitmain, a China-based Bitcoin mining company. Bitmain also manufactures its own hardware, having released two ASIC-style products in September, 2017. Samsung that has entered the global cryptocurrency mining sector can become the companies’ first real competitor and challenge their dominant market share. Hardware manufacturing can provide the firm with such an opportunity.
Samsung is not the only company seeking to make its foray into the mining hardware industry. Earlier in January, Kodak licensed its name to a mining hardware manufacturer to produce Kodak-branded miners. The company also announced the launch of a new digital photography blockchain platform called KODAKOne.
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