The competitive world of Bitcoin collecting has spawned a wave of supercomputers techies hope will make them a small fortune – even if they cost tens of thousands of dollars to power.
Specially developed Bitcoin ‘mining’ computers are either homemade or can be purchased from one of the growing number of online stores dedicated to cashing in on the supply side of the cult currency trend.
There are 21 million Bitcoins hidden across an internet-based network, which are expected to all be found by 2040. To unearth them computers have to solve the complex processor-intensive equations which hold them.
The more powerful the machine the better it is at solving the riddle.
So unsurprisingly canny computer-makers are developing high-powered souped-up computers so they can so they can do it repeatedly and rapidly and collect the most coins.
Allowed to work for hours on end, the mining machines can unlock many of the potentially lucrative coins – essentially computer codes – which are then used as currency online making their collectors potentially very rich.
A recent 24-hour period of work yielded Bitcoin miners around the globe $681,000 in profit.
And Bitcoin mining is being seen as so lucrative the digital drills themselves are selling for a small fortune.
The best machine on the market, according to Gizmodo, is the Avalon ASIC which at $6,800 isn’t cheap given its only function is plucking bits of code from the ether.
‘Money cannot buy a better Bitcoin mining machine,’ Gizmodo writes.
‘It was designed and built front to back with Bitcoin mining and Bitcoin mining alone in mind. It cannot do anything else, but it cannot be beat at what it does. It’s the beginning of the end of revolutions in Bitcoin mining. It is the endgame of an arms race.’