Former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s fintech startup Block (formerly known as Square) is building a system to make bitcoin mining easier. Block is now “officially building an open Bitcoin mining system,” the tech evangelist revealed on Twitter.
By changing its name to Block, Square positions itself as an organization focused not just on crypto, but also on a variety of other business lines.
Bitcoin mining is a long-term necessity for a decentralized, permissionless future, says Block’s Hardware General Manager. The Block’s hardware general manager Tom Templeton discussed the company’s focus on bitcoin mining this week.
Block hinted about developing a bitcoin mining system three months ago, and the company has now decided to take the plunge.
He adds that mining should be “more efficient and distributed in every aspect of it”, including maintenance, purchases, and setup. “We’re interested because mining encompasses a lot more than just creating new bitcoins.”
According to Templeton, a fully decentralized and permissionless future is needed in the long run. When it comes to bitcoin mining, there are a number of problems people face such as machine reliability, rig availability and performance problems.
The mining rigs can generate unwanted harmonics in the power grid, Templeton said. “They are also noisy, so they are too loud for home use.” Further, Templeton stated that the company has evaluated a variety of “IP blocks, open-source miner firmware and other system software offerings”.
Further, Block is building out its hardware team with application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) designers and software engineers. In addition, Templeton said the company has hired electrical engineers, analog designers and layout engineers.
Today, there is only a handful of manufacturers of ASIC bitcoin mining rigs, such as Bitmain, Ebang, Canaan, Microbt, Innosilicon, Ipollo and Strongu. Bitmain, Ipollo, Microbt and Canaan manufacture the best SHA256 terahash machines, based on profit per day and terahash performance.
Bitmain Antminer S19 Pros (100 TH/s) cost anywhere from $10K to $15K each. This machine, in particular, at today’s exchange rates and $0.12 per kilowatt-hour in electricity use, will earn you an estimated $16.23 a day.