The revenues Bitcoin miners have been able to rake in recently started growing, after falling to a 19-month low over the cryptocurrency ecosystem’s bear market. The revenue uptake was the first one since Bitcoin’s price boom.
According to blockchain research firm Diar, miner revenues in February hit a low they hadn’t seen since August of 2017, that forced miners running optimal equipment to deploy “massive” hash power in order to stay afloat, as their gross margins have been going down.
Per Diar, last month Bitcoin miner revenues were of $195 million, dropping 10% since the start of the year. In December of 2017, in comparison, fees alone gave miners a whopping $295 million worth of BTC. Fee-related revenue, however, has been dropping over the adoption of SegWit and the Lightning Network.
Given the market’s current situation, Diar noted the majority of the Bitcoin network is “likely to be running on the most recent equipment or else running at a loss.” This, as a rise in competition saw gross margins drop from 94% at the start of last year to 32% this year, although they recently grew to 39%.
The flagship cryptocurrency’s network has been seeing its hash rate keep on rising, presumably as miners try to compete with each other and deploy machines to stay afloat. As CryptoGlobe covered, it was recently revealed Bitmain is looking to deploy 100,000 ASICs, and that Chinese BTC miners are set to activate one million mining machines.
The blockchain research firm added, however, that current mining equipment may “no longer be enough to sustain long-term outlook with a looming coinbase reward having a little over a year away.”
Looking forward, Diar estimates mining operations will increase capital expenditure on the latest mining equipment to stay ahead. It adds Bitmain’s latest flagship model, the S15, has sold out twice.
Given the trend, bitcoin’s hashrate is set to keep on rising “bar a massive price drop.” Earlier this year, it rose to a three-month high as miners were showing renewed confidence in the market.