Samsung’s business for semiconductor is currently looking to expand into the cryptocurrency mining industry.
Samsung has confirmed it is in the process of making hardware specially designed for mining cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. A spokesperson of Samsung said “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.”
These chips are known as ASICs, or application-specific integrated circuits. ASICs are processors specially designed for a single computational task, as opposed to the multi-purpose processors used in computers and phones.
The currency of bitcoin is created by solving mathematical problems, with these calculations also maintaining the integrity of bitcoin transactions. As the number of bitcoins mined are increasing, these math problems also become increasingly difficult. This has led to miners moving on from using normal integrated graphics cards, to GPUs designed for gaming, and now to specially built ASICs.
It is not clear what products are exactly being produced by Samsung. However, the company currently supplies chips for a number of firms set up solely to mine cryptocurrencies, including the China-based Bitmain. The sale of this in turn, has resulted in the addition of around US$350 million to US$ 400 million to its quarterly revenue.