U.S. tech giant Intel has opted to discontinue its relatively new Bitcoin mining product line, the Blockscale 1000 chip series. This move comes a year after the introduction of the standalone crypto-mining chip, which was anticipated to surpass leading ASICs in power and energy efficiency.
Intel discontinues Blockscale 1000 chip series
Intel revealed on Wednesday that as it focuses on its IDM 2.0 strategy, which involves using third-party foundries for manufacturing products like graphics and chipsets, the Blockscale 1000 Series ASIC would be discontinued. Nonetheless, the company will continue to support existing Blockscale customers.
Initially, Intel had planned to ship its Blockscale ASIC in the third quarter of 2022, with companies such as Argo Blockchain, Block (previously Square), GRIID Infrastructure, and Hive Blockchain as its first customers. Hive Blockchain even lauded Intel’s chips for significantly improving its ASIC fleet’s efficiency.
However, the company now expects to cease taking orders for Blockscale within five months and halt chip shipments by April 20th next year, according to a document on Intel’s website.
The crypto winter and falling bitcoin prices have negatively impacted Intel’s clients, especially those who took on high-interest debt during the bull market in an attempt to scale rapidly. In February 2022, Intel’s former graphics chief, Raja Koduri, announced energy-efficient computing technology and the creation of a custom computing group.
However, after Intel split the unit to focus on “critical growth engines,” Koduri returned to his previous role as a chief architect before leaving the company to found an AI-focused software company.
While Intel has suggested that it is not entirely withdrawing from the Bitcoin market, stating that it continues to “monitor market opportunities,” other chipmakers such as Nvidia and AMD have also experienced varying degrees of impact from the bear market. Their gaming graphics cards were popular among Ethereum miners before the network’s switch to proof of stake last year.