The global impact of “mining” cryptocurrencies can be seen in the GPU shortage due to ether mining. And the latest report warns of a shortage of mass storage, both HDDs and SSDs.
Chia is a new cryptocurrency based on storage and not on computing power, motivating miners to buy hundreds of HDD and SDD units instead of GPU.
While the popular cryptocurrencies Bitcoin and Ether primarily require a lot of computing power, this new Chia Cryptocurrency requires a lot of storage space. The blockchain relies on “Proof of Space and Time” instead of “Proof of Work” and should make use of the storage space that is not required by computer systems.
Chia Cryptocurrency is the concept from BitTorrent inventor Bram Cohen is supposed to save resources and energy, in contrast to Bitcoin and Ether, for which huge mining farms now devour vast amounts of hardware and electricity.
Chia has not yet been traded at all, but that doesn’t stop mining farms from already stashing hardware. According to HKEPC, miners in Hong Kong are already stocking up on HDDs and SSDs. Allegedly, the stock of HDDs with storage capacities of 4 TB to 18 TB has already been decimated.
The MyDrivers website also reports major price increases for HDDs, in particular, models with 18 TB are said to have become much more expensive.
While classic hard drives are probably preferred for Chia mining due to the lower price per gigabyte, SSDs are also said to have moved into the interest of miners. The demand for fast NVMe SSDs is also increasing — the Chinese memory manufacturer Jiahe Jinwei said that some SSD models with high storage capacity were sold out in a very short time. Jiahe Jinwei, on the other hand, has announced that it will bring a special mining SSD onto the market.
It remains to be seen how the cryptocurrency Chia and mining will develop and whether the resulting increased demand for mass storage will also have global effects.