China’s non-crypto blockchain onboards Hong Kong Banks, the Ethereum Merge Aftershocks

The open-source, non-crypto based Spartan blockchain network of China has recently onboarded several banks from Hong Kong. A press release shared with the media and reports from CoinDesk reveal that more than 10 banks have been onboarded, including HSBC, Maxim and Emperor Group.

The Spartan blockchain does not employ cryptocurrencies. This is considered to be a way to exclude volatile digital money, and still allow blockchain technology to be used. Spartan is like the non-crypto version of Ethereum, Polygon, or Cosmos.

China has been strict with cryptocurrencies, starting with 2013 when it banned institutional participation followed by banning ICOs in 2017 at the height of the ICO craze. In 2021, it brought a blanket ban on all crypto trading and related activities, including tech and marketing support for crypto ventures. The most active government agency involved in enforcing these bans is the The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), and at least nine other agencies are also at work.

Non-crypto based NFTs are coming up

The Blockchain Services Network of China recently introduced a non-crypto based NFT infrastructure. One of the technology partners revealed that NFTs that were not linked to cryptocurrencies were not illegal.

The non-crypto NFT infrastructure is called BSN-Distributed Digital Certificate. Here users can obtain an API and build and manage platforms for NFTs. The Yen will be the currency used in buying and selling NFTs here. Red Date Technology is building this infrastructure.

Post Ethereum Merge, what happens to old mining pools and GPUs?

The Merge, taking place sometime next week or certainly by end of September, will make Ethereum mining obsolete. Those who continue to use the old POW system will not able to produce new blocks, and may have to switch to Ethereum Classic with a different POW mechanism, but rewards here will be thousands of times less. Antpool, one of the biggest miners, has recently reported aiming to spend $10 million for ETC mining.

Now that GPU mining will no longer be possible for Ethereum, what happens to the ETH mining pools? Several reports and notes released by the mining pools reveal that they intend to switch to other profitable ERC-20 tokens. On the Ethereum blockchain, there are many popular alt tokens that are minted, and beta testing for these has begun.

Also at stake is the future of Nvidia graphics cards used for mining Ether, whose prices are now dropping. Back in 2021, at the height of cryptocurrency boom, some of these GPUs were sold at double prices. A typical mining business holds thousands of these GPUs which are also of great importance for AI, cloud computing, and machine learning. Some of the most powerful of Nvidia cards are A4000, A5000, A6000 and A40.

What to mine after Ethereum?

Ethereum was the most profitable to mine, but once this comes to an end, miners will have to find other profitable coins and tokens. They may even have to keep a regular check on profitability, and keep several wallets.

The rewards for mining Dogecoin, Litecoin, Monero and other alt-coins are negligible compared to mining Ether.

ETHPoW – The Exodus, and a long march ahead

As per a Forbes report, some Chinese miners led by the creator of ETC hard fork, Chandler Guo, want to continue with POW Ethereum as it currently exists. This group wants to create a hard fork (a division of the existing ETH blockchain, like a branch dividing into two). The new coin will be called ETHW or ETHPoW.

Sources:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/colinharper/2022/08/21/ethereum-miners-will-have-few-good-options-after-the-merge/?sh=2bcae14d407a

https://www.coindesk.com/tech/2022/01/13/china-backed-bsn-to-release-infrastructure-this-month-to-support-nfts-report/

https://www.coindesk.com/business/2022/09/06/chinas-state-backed-open-source-blockchain-onboards-hk-conglomerates-hsbc-emperor-group/

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