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Bitmain Releases a New ASIC Miner for the Equihash Algorithm

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Bitmain is clearly intent on introducing a lot more ASIC miners in quick succession. Their latest unit is the Antminer Z9 mini, which is primarily designed to mine cryptocurrencies relying on the Equihash algorithm. Although none of those currencies are even remotely popular, it seems there may still be some interest in this mining unit.

THE PURPOSE OF THE ANTMINER Z9 MINI

One has to commend Bitmain from suddenly releasing so many different ASIC miners. It seems the company has been working on ASIC chips for specific mining algorithms, including CryptoNight, Equihash, and a few others. This begs the question as to how long the Chinese firm has been “secretly” mining these cryptocurrencies and driving up the prices accordingly.

Even so, the release of the Antminer Z9 mini comes at a rather interesting time. For those unaware, there are a few cryptocurrencies which make use of this particular algorithm, although none of them will be on most speculators’ short lists right now. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a market for such currencies, but releasing a dedicated ASIC miner for them seems a bit odd. That is, unless Bitmain acknowledges that mining those coins with their own hardware is no longer profitable enough to keep going.

It remains to be seen how many people will actually order this mining unit, which is priced at $1,999. In exchange for their hard-earned money, customers will get a machine capable of hashing away at 10,000 solutions per second. The unit consumes 300 Watts of electricity, which is more than acceptable compared to some of the other goodies sold by the company. As with most other ASIC miners, customers should not expect a refund for any orders of this unit.Among the currencies using the Equihash algorithm are Bitcoin Gold, Zcash, Komodo, ZClassic, ZenCash, and a few others. Other than Zcash, it may not even be worth buying such an ASIC miner, although that decision should be made by users individually. We do know the Bitcoin Gold team is already preparing to fork away from this mining algorithm to avoid the ASIC threat altogether. Whether or not that’s a smart decision is something else entirely.

Unsurprisingly, Bitmain has no plans of accepting payments through Equihash currencies for this mining unit. Instead, they’ll stick with the same traditional options, such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash. Whether or not anyone will even purchase this unit remains to be seen, as none of the Equihash coins have gained much traction. It is another somewhat odd decision by Bitmain, although we will have to wait and see how things play out.

It is evident a lot of things are changing in the world of cryptocurrency right now. Bitmain seemingly has a finger in every pie, which means the company may be responsible for controlling most hashrates of individual currencies on the market today. Anything that is not an ERC20 token or non-mineable asset is potentially subject to Bitmain’s interference in one way or another. That is not a positive thought by any means.

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Facebook Unexpectedly Plants Its Flag in Crypto-Friendly Switzerland

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By CCN: Facebook has reportedly set up a fintech company dubbed Libra Networks in Switzerland. The move clearly correlates with the social media giant’s Project Libra.

According to Reuters, the focus of the fintech is on the blockchain, payments, data analytics, and investing.

Libra Networks, which was registered in Geneva on May 2, will provide financial and technology services. Also in its wheelhouse will be developing related hardware and software.

ANOTHER SECRET MOVE

Famed investor Michael Novogratz recently called Project Libra “stunningly important” to the crypto space.

Given Facebook’s history of boasting about its projects, you’d think it would be bragging about Project Libra. That’s not the case. The Switzerland move was done with no fanfare such as company press releases or blog posts. This seems to be the way Facebook has chosen to roll out its Project Libra.

It’s keeping close to the chest even where the project will be launched. In December, it hinted at plans to set up shop in India. Early reports suggest Zuckerberg’s cryptocurrency will facilitate overseas remittance payments for Indian WhatsApp users.

CURIOSITY GROWS 

Facebook launched Project Libra more than a year ago to allow money transfers between WhatsApp users. Over time, however, the scope of the project has expanded. That includes the decision to include e-commerce payments on Facebook and other websites as well as rewards for viewing ads, shopping online, and interacting with content.

When all is done, Facebook hopes to have a stablecoin that is pegged to the value of a local currency.

Switzerland has long been recognized as a leading hub of blockchain and cryptocurrency technology, with the Swiss town of Zug referred to as “Crypto Valley” throughout the world.

PRIVACY ISSUES HAUNT FACEBOOK

As Facebook was making arrangements for this Switzerland fintech, it was facing hiring problems on the domestic front. CCN reported that recruiters are complaining that it is increasingly harder to find talent for Facebook’s engineering jobs. Potential hires don’t like the myriad privacy issues that the social media platform has seemingly failed to get a handle on.

They’re taking their talents to other tech giants, like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.

The project has also drawn scrutiny from U.S. lawmakers. They are concerned that Project Libra will be plagued by Facebook’s failure to adequately secure users’ data

Source.ccn

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Well-known Ponzi scheme, Bitconnect is set for a relaunch on July 1

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It’s an interesting time in the crypto sphere. As the markets are setting new yearly highs and excitement builds around Bitcoin’s potential, news has begun circulating that someone is trying to revive BitConnect, a project best known for being a Ponzi scheme.

Bitconnect became one of the most hyped projects of 2017 after YouTube and Twitter personalities promoted the project to gain affiliate payouts. However, by 2018 it had become apparent that Bitconnect was a scam and a class action lawsuit was filed, followed by the arrest of the Asia head of Bitonnect.

As such, many were taken by surprise when Bitconnect 2.0 was announced late last year. While the website stated the infamous project would be relaunching soon, nothing of the sort has happened. However, as NullTX reports, an email has been doing the rounds which claims Bitconnect’s return is imminent. This is further corroborated by a tweet stating Bitcoinnect 2.0 will be officially launching on July 1, 2019.

A quick search on WHOIS reveals the domain name will expire this time next month, meaning the domain name will be taken offline before Bitconnect 2.0 even launches. Considering no one knows who’s in control of the domain, it’s going to be interesting to see how this plays out.

Source.chepicap

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Medvedev: Crypto Regulations not a priority for Russia

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  • The  Russian government is not thinking of regulating the cryptocurrency markets.
  • Crypto trade may start again in the nation.

Many industries have been appealing the Russian government to formulate laws to operate the market for digital assets because of the regulatory uncertainty of cryptocurrency. It has become difficult for firms to do business. However, those people can do business in Russia anytime soon. Medvedev said in a legal conference in St Petersburg that formulating digital asset regulations “is no longer a priority for the state,” adding:

“Nowadays, the popularity of cryptocurrency has decreased, and regulatory issues may not be so relevant.”

However, Medvedev did not say that the lawmakers are entirely uninterested in cryptocurrencies. He noted that trading in the digital asset markets could go up again. If and when that happens, the regulators will renew their interest towards cryptocurrencies.

 

source:fxstreet

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