Bitcoin miner maker Bitmain cuts own mining hash power by 88%
Bitmain is probably the biggest manufacturer of cryptocurrency mining ASICs in the world, with models specialized in mining Bitcoin, Z-Cash and Decred. The company happens to be one of the biggest Bitcoin miners in the world, as well, employing its own machines in the creation of new coins and being an important pillar for the blockchain infrastructure.
In early April 2019, Bitmain disclosed that it was directing 2,072 Petahashes per second for Bitcoin mining from its total hash power, which is the equivalent of around 38,000 of its fastest miners, proving that it was still heavily invested in this business. On May 7, however, the company surprised everyone stating that the total mining power was reduced by almost 88% to around 237 PH/s, or the equivalent of a little bit over 4,200 miners, which seems quite counterproductive when the Bitcoin price has just rose above US$6,000.
The company did not offer any explanation for this sudden drop of Bitcoin hash power, but it did allude to the fact that “it is [in the] natural course of the mining business where the hash rate owned by one body at one instant may be owned by someone else at another instant” when asked for an official statement by online publication Coindesk. This statement seems to imply that the hash power was reallocated for other purposes, or even rented out to other companies. Bitmain has recently started offering AI and deep learning hardware, so there is a possibility that the reallocated hash power could now fuel this type of activities.
This move may also have been determined by the intent of the Chinese government to eradicate crypto mining due to its unregulated nature. Bitmain could have moved most of its Bitcoin miners abroad in order to circumvent the crypto mining ban that will soon be enforced in the Chinese territories.