Bitmain Has a New 7nm ASIC Chip for Mining Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash

On Monday (February 18th), Chinese crypto mining giant Bitmain Technologies Limited ("Bitmain") announced a new next generation 7nm ASCI chip for mining cryptocurrencies that use the SHA256 algorithm for Proof of Work (PoW).

Bitmain says that its new BM1397 chip "achieves new feats in performance, chip area and energy efficiency" for SHA256 mining, and it "requires lower power and can offer an energy consumption to computing ratio as low as 30J/TH," which is "a 28.6 percent improvement in power efficiency in comparison with Bitmain’s previous 7nm chip, the BM1391." 

Bitmain will be announcing two new Antminer models that will use the BM1397 chip—the S17 and the T17—at a future date.

It is important to note that the BM1397 is Bitmain's second generation 7nm ASCI chip. Its first generation ASIC chip was the BM1391, which was used in the Antminer S15 and T15, which were announced on 6 November 2018 and launched on 28 November 2018. The Antminer S15 has a "high-performance mode can achieve a hash rate of 28 TH/s with a power efficiency as low as 57 J/TH," while the Antminer T15 has a "high-performance mode sees a hash rate of 23 TH/s and a power efficiency as low as 67 J/TH."

Last month, South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported that Bitmain was "poised to name a new chief executive to replace company co-founders Wu Jihan and Zhan Ketuan" according to "people with knowledge of the matter," and that the "potential successor is Wang Haichao, who currently holds the position of product engineering director at the Beijing-based company, but has already taken over duties from co-chief executive Wu and Zhan in a transition period that started in December."

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Kraken OTC Head Says It’s Too Early to Call Bitcoin a 'Safe Haven' Asset

Michael LaVere
  • Kraken head of OTC trading Nelson Minier says it's too early to call bitcoin a "safe haven" asset.
  • Compares the current atmosphere of crypto trading to how Wall Street used to be. 

Nelson Minier, head of over-the-counter (OTC) trading at crypto exchange Kraken, says that it is too early to call bitcoin a “safe haven” asset, despite the cryptocurrency gaining popularity in that regard. 

Too Early for Save Haven Status

In an interview with Nasdaq TradeTalks, Minier compared the current state of bitcoin and crypto-assets trading to how Wall Street used to operate in the past. 

According to Minier, 

Wall Street ain't what it used to be. The first 15 years I was on Wall Street, it was fun. I was very fortunate. I started in the CDS market which feels a lot like crypto. Here you have a lot of financial innovation, a lot of trading. It feels very much like that...there's a lot of energy and enthusiasm about this progress and where it's going.

Bitcoin has been gaining popularity as a so-called “safe haven” asset. According to the growing belief among analysts and investors, BTC is an attractive alternative to fiat and the traditional stock markets as a hedge against economic downturn. 

However, Minier believes it’s too early to label bitcoin as a safe haven, given the high price volatility. 

He continued, 

So, I’m not so sure that it’s a safe haven asset yet, but I do think that it’s starting to act like one. I think that people are starting to portfolio manage, are starting to come in slowly. And when the market is getting shaky you saw Bitcoin rise, I mean, you wouldn’t see that before, it was trading like a risky asset.

Despite calling bitcoin's safe haven status premature, Minier admitted that “we're heading that way for sure.”