All About BTC, LTC, ETH mining as well as other alternative crypto currencies
Do you wonder how big is the number of Ethereum users roughly about one month after the official start of the alternative crypto currency? There is an interesting chart over at Etherscan (Ethereum block explorer website) that shows the growth of the number of unique Ethereum addresses (wallets) in the blockchain. Up until now the number of unique addresses are a little over 18 thousand, though the number of actual users is probably higher. This simply means that Ethereum needs to get more user friendly in order to increase its community of users as at the moment it is still quite hard for the average crypto currency user to get started with Ethereum. We have already prepared multiple Ethereum guides to help new people to get started, but there is still need for more work done for an Ethereum client with easy to use GUI, better miners and so on.
And even though that Ethereum is still very new and the actual user base is small and slowly growing, it is already showing a lot of interest and huge potential. Let us take for example just one of the decentralized applications that will be using EThereum’s network – Augur, their crowdsale currently running has already passed the 4 million USD mark in BTC and ETH collected from users. There are already tens of decentralized applications that will be using Ethereum’s network that are currently being developed, so there is a big potential for Ethereum to grow and be widely used. And we are not talking just about the underlying crypto currency called Ether, but about the whole idea of the Ethereum that you can say takes crypto currencies to the next level. But in order for that potential to realize as we have mentioned Ethereum needs to get more user friendly and not stay focused only on programmers or advanced users that are currently a big part of the people using it.
This weeks did not start well for the worldwide financial markets, and things were especially not good in USA and China as a result the exchange rates of Bitcoin and Litecoin as well as other crypto currencies are also down. The crypto currency price volatility is not something new, but the exchange rates dropping at this particular moment, especially for Litecoin, are not that good. Today LTC is expected to have its first block reward halving and the price going down to as low as $2.5 USD means that the mining profitability after the halving will be awfully low if any at all. Though later today we are probably going to see some recovery for both Bitcoin and Litecoin that will also most likely rise the fiat exchange rates for other alternative crypto currencies as well.
Back on to mining LTC, we had high hopes for SFARDS to have their new generation dual-mining ASIC capable of mining simultaneously SHA-256 and Scrypt-based crypto coins such as Bitcoin and Litecoin. The more interesting parts with the SFARDS SF100 miners is their high hashrate for mining LTC only with very low power consumption, roughly 1/3 of the closest competitor in the form of Innosilicon and their A2 Terminator chips. Unfortunately SFARDS is late, they are apparently going to miss the opportunity to release the hardware before the block reward halving, so their pricing will either have to go even lower in order to get user interest if/when they have wider availability. In fact some people have apparently received first batch units from SFARDS earlier this month, very limited early availability, and the feedback was not only positive. It seems that aside from the high initial price of the miners, there is more to be desired from the build quality and in terms of reliability as well. Meanwhile it seems that Innosilicon is selling well their A2 miners as they are currently the best you can get on the market and with good price policy and availability people that want to mine for Scrypt coins such as LTC have no other choice for ASIC miners.
We are going to see how things will work on for Litecoin, but meanwhile it is already experiencing a strong competition by Ethereum (ETH) in terms of market capitalization. Ethereum has been in development for quite a while, but mining has been officially launched at the end of last month along with the network starting to support transactions a few days later. The current high market capitalization of Ethereum is due to the availability of 72 million coins prior to the mining even starting, 60 million of which were sold to early investors and another 12 million to be distributed to early supporters. AS for the mining part, we have not even reached 1 million coins mined by users as we are getting close to the first month of mining. The expected rate of mining for Ethereum is about 30000 ETH a day or less than a million a month, but this does not mean that there are actually very few coins available. At the moment the daily trading volume of Ethereum is between half a million and a million coins, lately a bit lower because of the general drop in price. On the other hand Augur (upcoming application using the Ethereum network) is currently running their crowdsale and have already collected over 1 million Ether coins from users and close to 10000 BTC. So we are going to be keeping a close eye on the Ethereum development as well.
The Bitcoin cloud mining company Genesis Mining has launched an interesting project called Life Inside a Bitcoin Mine that shows live video feeds from one of the company’s mining farms located in Iceland. The website currently has 3 different streaming webcams that you can check from inside the Iceland Bitcoin mining farm as well as some additional information and other interesting videos. Watching at the live streams from the Bitcoin farm you may quickly get that it is not very fun being inside a mining farm as nothing much is actually happening most of the time when everything is working just fine.
WHY A LIVESTREAM?
As many people don’t know how a mining farm looks and operates, we wanted to give everybody a clear idea about it and provide livestreams of a mining farm from Genesis Mining. Coupled with new, ongoing promotional events, we hope to make this a nice entertainment channel.