Bitcoin miners are struggling to acquire more mining platforms as the global shortage of semiconductors worsens.
Bitcoin Miners Face Chip Shortages Amid Growing DemandNOTES
The lack of chips is significantly affecting the Bitcoin mining hardware distribution chain, according to Reuters on Friday.
In fact, Bitmain – one of Bitcoin’s leading mining producers – saw its stock depleted by August 2021, according to information on its website. In addition to being out of stock, Bitmain’s mining platforms are now at a huge premium price.
For example, in November 2020, the Antminer S19 was sold for $1,897 per unit. At the time this article was written, the same miner was costing $2,767 on the company’s website – an increase of 45%.
Speaking to Reuters, Alex Ao, vice president of semiconductor manufacturer Innosilicon, said: „There are not enough chips to support the production of mining platforms.
The little available supply is being Ethereum Code exploited by large mining establishments in North America. In 2020, US-based mining giants such as Riot Blockchain, Bitfarms and Marathon significantly increased their inventory with massive purchases from Bitmain and rival MicroBT.
These capacity expansions occurred even when Bitcoin went through its halving, which saw block subsidies cut in half. Thus, while China still dominates the global distribution of the hash rate, US mining interests are supposedly „pushing supply to China“.
Chinese mining companies have also experienced notable disruptions recently, including a frozen tide in 2020 that prevented some operations from paying for electricity. As reported earlier by the Cointelegraph, authorities in Yunnan province of China have also shut off power to the region’s miners.
Minor mining operations also risk being excluded from the market. Hardware awards, even for second-hand platforms, in addition to reduced block rewards can significantly impact their financial results.
Other semiconductor-dependent industries are already beginning to feel the effects of continued scarcity. Auto manufacturers such as Ford have announced the closure of some of their plants.