Bitmain is about to launch a USD 18 billion initial public offering (IPO) on the Hong Kong stock exchange and is becoming quite innovative and creative with the devices offered to mine cryptocurrency. Bitmain has released two different models of mining Wi-Fi routers, a router that can mine X11 cryptocurrencies like Dash and a router that can mine blake2b cryptocurrencies like Siacoin.
Once the Wi-Fi routers are connected to the internet, they automatically begin to mine on Bitmain’s Antpool, one of the biggest cryptocurrency mining pools in the world. The blake2b mining router mines Siacoin at 11.54 GH/s while consuming 22.6 W of energy, and the X11 mining router mines Dash, formerly DarkCoin, at 300 MH/s while consuming 24.37 W of energy. The router can be tinkered with to mine other blake2b coins but if users choose to do that then efficiency and performance are no longer guaranteed, likewise for the X11 router.
A Wi-Fi router mining cryptocurrency at all times is an interesting prospect. In places like college dorms and apartments where electricity is included in the rent these routers theoretically might be able to pay for the internet service, especially since they are being sold at the incredibly low rate of less than BTC 0.01 (USD 63 at time of writing) for each mining router.
The cryptocurrency mining router is not the first time a common piece of household technology has been turned into a cryptocurrency mining rig. Canaan, the second largest manufacturer of crypto mining equipment, has created a TV that mines cryptocurrency. A French company, Qarnot, has produced a cryptocurrency mining rig which acts as a heater. This might not really be anything new though, since all cryptocurrency mining equipment generates a lot of heat.