More than one in 10 Americans are unfamiliar with cryptocurrencies, according to a new Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Bloomberg. What Happened: In a survey of 1,984 adults polled between Feb. 12-14, nearly half of the respondents said only that they’d heard of some of the coins, such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). Only 16% of respondents said they were very familiar with cryptocurrencies, while 28% said they were somewhat familiar. When queried on how cryptocurrencies worked, 61% of people who had heard of them admitted having minimal understanding of their workings, while only 14% of those familiar with the coins claimed to understand “very well” how they worked. Among the respondents who were familiar with cryptocurrencies, 43% doubted that they are a legitimate form of payment. Younger respondents weren’t unanimous in their faith in crypto: 58% of Gen Z respondents (defined as between 18 and 24 years old) who professed to having crypto knowledge said that digital currencies are either a very or somewhat legitimate form of payment, and 69% of millennials (those between 25 and 40 years old) shared that positive sentiment. Not Gaining Purchase: Looking ahead, roughly one-third of respondents predicted crypto will become a standard form of payment. But the current commotion over cryptocurrency did not impress most respondents: Only 8% predicted Bitcoin will rise above the $100,000 mark, while 4% predicted Bitcoin will plummet to $0. And 29% believed the subject will largely be forgotten in 10 years. Only 10% of people familiar with crypto said they used it on a regular basis to make purchases. “From the public standpoint, it’s not a cryptocurrency, it’s a cryptic-currency,” said John Gerzema, CEO of the Harris Poll. (Photo by André François McKenzie on Unsplash) See more from BenzingaClick here for options trades from BenzingaHome Prices, Values Continue To Soar: Breaking Down January DataDisney+ Presents Streaming Debut Of Original ‘Muppet Show’© 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved. First, a assessment of final week’s occasions: – EUR/USD. The sharp rise in bond yields within the US and Europe has hit not solely the inventory market, but in addition the “carry commerce”, offering help to funding currencies, primarily the euro and the US greenback. Recall that the funding foreign money is normally a foreign […] You’ll quickly have the ability to make funds utilizing your cryptocurrency funds through Google Pay and Samsung Pay, in Bitcoin has been a source of fascination for people all over the world. Prices of Bitcoin have been on an incline for some time now. This incline has mostly been a general trend for almost all cryptocurrencies. Trading at more than $55000 USD as of February 2021, Bitcoin is by far one of the more…
(Bloomberg) — The control room of the Texas electric grid is dominated by a Cineplex-sized screen along one wall. As outdoor temperatures plunged to arctic levels around the low-slung building 30 miles from Austin last Sunday night, all eyes were on it. The news wasn’t good.Electric demand for heat across the state was soaring, as expected, but green dots on the corner state map started flipping to red. Each was a regional power generator, and they were spontaneously shutting down — three coal plants followed quickly by a gas plant in Corpus Christi.Then another metric began to flash: frequency, a measure of electricity flow on the grid. The 60 hertz needed for stability fell to 59.93.Bill Magness, chief executive officer of the grid operator, was watching intently and understood instantly what was at stake. Below 59 and the state’s electrical system would face cascading blackouts that would take weeks or months to restore. In India in 2012, 700 million people were plunged into darkness in such a moment.Texas was “seconds and minutes” from such a catastrophe, Magness recalled. It shouldn’t have been happening. After the winter blackouts of 2011, plants should have protected themselves against such low temperatures. The basis of the Texas system is the market — demand soars, you make money. Demand was soaring last Sunday, but the plants were shutting down.If insufficient power came in, the grid wouldn’t be able to support the energy demand from customers and the other power plants that supply them, causing a cycle of dysfunction. So over the following hours, Magness ordered the largest forced power outage in U.S. history.More than 2,000 miles away in San Juan, Puerto Rico, power trader Adam Sinn had been sitting at his computer watching the frequency chart plummet in real time. He knew the dip would be enough to start forcing power plants offline, potentially causing more widespread blackouts. It was an unprecedented situation but, from his perspective, entirely avoidable.In fact, it was a crisis years in the making. Texas’s power grid is famously independent — and insular. Its self-contained grid is powered almost entirely in-state with limited import ability, thereby allowing the system to avoid federal oversight. It’s also an energy-only market, meaning the grid relies on price signals from extreme power prices to spur investments in new power plants, batteries and other supplies.There is no way to contract power supply to meet the highest demand periods, something known as a capacity market on other grids. There are no mandates or penalties compelling generators to make supply available when it’s needed, or to cold-proof their equipment for storms like the one that slammed Texas last weekend.So, as the cold began shutting in natural gas supplies, freezing instruments at power plants and icing over wind turbines, there wasn’t enough back-up generation available to meet demand. As many as 5 million homes and businesses were abruptly thrust into frigid darkness for nearly four straight days as the crisis continued, ensnaring more than a dozen other states as far as away as California and roiling commodity markets across the globe.Now, as the snow across Texas melts and the lights come back on, answers remain hard to come by. What’s clear is that no one — neither the power plants that failed to cold-proof their equipment nor the grid operator charged with safeguarding the electric system — was prepared for such an extreme weather event. What happened in those two hours highlights just how vulnerable even the most sophisticated energy systems are to the vagaries of climate change, and how close it all came to crashing down. The warning signs started well before the cold set in. Nearly a week before the blackouts began, the operator of a wind farm in Texas alerted the grid manager, known as Ercot, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, that ice from the impending storm could force it offline, an early signal that capacity on the system would likely be compromised.On Thursday, a natural gas trader trying to secure supplies for his company’s power plants for the holiday weekend was surprised to see prices surging. The reason? There were concerns that gas production in West Texas was at risk of freezing off, which would crimp supplies for power generation. And Sinn, the owner of Aspire Commodities, noticed from his computer in San Juan that day-ahead power prices on Texas’s grid were climbing, a sign that the market was anticipating scarcity.By Saturday, a considerable amount of capacity was already offline, some of it for routine maintenance and some of it due to weather. This is because in Texas peak demand is associated with summer heat so many plants do routine maintenance in winter.Wind was the first to go, as dense fog settled over turbine fleets, freezing on contact. The slow build-up of moisture over several days caused some of the blades to ice over, while connection lines began to droop under the weight of the ice until power production from some wind farms completely ceased. But because the resource makes up a minor share of Texas’s wintertime power mix, grid operators didn’t view it as a big problem. Then gas generation began declining. That was inconvenient, but not unmanageable. There was still plenty of supply on the system.On Sunday, the mood in the control room grew tense. As the cold deepened, demand climbed sharply, hitting and then exceeding the state’s all-time winter peak. But the lights stayed on. Magness and his director of system operations, Dan Woodfin, watched the monitors from an adjoining room, satisfied that they had made it through the worst of the crisis.“We thought maybe we are OK for the rest of the night,” Magness said.They weren’t.At 11 p.m., the green dots on the monitor overlooking the control room turned red. Across the state, power plant owners started seeing instruments on their lines freezing and causing their plants to go down. In some cases, well shut-ins in West Texas caused gas supplies to dip, reducing pressure at gas plants and forcing them offline. At that point, virtually all of the generation falling off the grid came from coal or gas plants.“Contrary to some early hot takes, gas and coal were actually the biggest culprits in the crisis,” said Eric Fell, director of North America gas at Wood MacKenzie.Back in Taylor, the town northeast of Austin, where Ercot is based, orange and red emergency displays began flashing on the giant flat-screens that lined the operators’ workstations.“It happened very fast — there were several that went off in a row,” Magness said.In the span of 30 minutes, 2.6 gigawatts of capacity had disappeared from Texas’s power grid, enough to power half a million homes.“The key operators realized, this has got to stop. This isn’t allowed to happen,” said Magness.By that point, the temperature outside had fallen to 5 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 15 Celsius). Across the state, streets were icing over and snowbanks piling up. Demand kept climbing. And plants kept falling offline.No one in the room had anticipated this. And it was about to get worse.The generation outages were causing frequency to fall — as much as 0.5 hertz in a half-hour. “Then we started to see lots of generation come off,” Magness said.To stem the plunge, operators would have to start “shedding load.” All at once, control room staff began calling transmission operators across the state, ordering them to start cutting power to their customers.“As we shed load and the frequency continued to decline, we ordered another block of load shed and the frequency declined further, and we ordered another block of load shed,” said Woodfin, who slept in his office through the crisis.Operators removed 10 gigawatts of demand from 1:30 a.m. until 2:30 a.m., essentially cutting power to 2 million homes in one fell swoop.The utility that services San Antonio, CPS Energy, was one of those that got an order to cut power.“We excluded anything critical, any circuit that had a hospital or police,” CPS chief executive Paula Gold-Williams said Friday. “We kept the airport up.”Alton McCarver’s apartment in Austin was one of the homes that lost power. The IT worker woke shivering at 2:30 a.m., an hour after the blackouts began, and tried turning up the thermostat. “Even my dog, he was shaking in the house because he was so cold,” he said.McCarver wanted to take his wife and 9-year-old daughter to shelter with a friend who still had power, but the steep hills around their home were coated in ice and he didn’t think they could make the drive safely. “You’re hungry, you’re frustrated, you’re definitely cold,” he said. “I was mostly worried about my family.”The power cuts worked — at least in so far as Ercot managed to keep demand below rapidly falling supply.But the grid operator shed load so rapidly that some generators and market watchers have wondered whether they exacerbated the problem.What’s more, frequency continued to fluctuate through the early hours of the morning, potentially causing even more power plants to trip, according to Ercot market participants. The Sandy Creek coal plant near Waco was one them, falling offline at 1:56 a.m. in tandem with the frequency dip, according to data from the plant operator. Ercot, however, maintains that the frequency stayed above the level at which plants would trip.And as blackouts spread across the state, power was cut not only to homes and businesses but to the compressor stations that power natural gas pipelines — further cutting off the flow of supplies to power plants.Power supplies became so scarce that what were supposed to be “rolling” blackouts ended up lasting for days at a time, leaving millions of Texans without lights, heat and, eventually without water. Even the Ercot control center lost water, and had to bring in portable toilets for its staff. “It’s just catastrophic,” said Tony Clark, a former commissioner with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and a senior adviser at law firm Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP. By Friday, when Ercot declared that the emergency had ended, 14.4 million still lacked reliable access to public water supplies, and the crisis had already cost the state $50 billion in damages, according to Accuweather. The cost of power on Monday alone was $10 billion, according to estimates from Wood Mackenzie. The Public Utility Commission of Texas announced an investigation into the factors that led to the blackouts. But at least the lights were coming back on. In the afternoon, shell-shocked people trickled out of their homes to soak up the sun. “It feels crazy standing outside in the 40 degree sunlight,” said Cassie Moore, a 35-year-old writer and educator, who offered up her shower and washing machine to her boss and friends who were still without power or water. “In this same spot a few days ago I was worried that my dogs might freeze to death.”—With Javier Blas (Adds investigation by the Public Utility Commission of Texas in the 42nd paragraph. A previous version corrected the timing and scope of the generation decline at Sandy Creek coal plant in 37th paragraph, based on data shared by plant operator. )For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Forex Forecast and Cryptocurrencies Forecast for February 22 – 26, 2021 – Analytics & Forecasts – 20 February 2021
First, a assessment of final week’s occasions:
– EUR/USD. The sharp rise in bond yields within the US and Europe has hit not solely the inventory market, but in addition the “carry commerce”, offering help to funding currencies, primarily the euro and the US greenback. Recall that the funding foreign money is normally a foreign money with a low rate of interest. Implementing the carry commerce technique, merchants borrow it after which deposit it in one other foreign money, comparable to growing nations, with a better fee. And now the autumn in danger sentiment has led to an exit from such offers, and the strengthening of each EUR and USD. Apparently, this could clarify the consolidation of this pair. And if the preponderance was on the aspect of the greenback within the first half of the week, then, traders started to purchase up the cheaper euro ranging from Wednesday, February 17. Because of this, having began the week on the stage of 1.2120, the EUR/USD pair ended it virtually there, on the stage of 1.2115;
– GBP/USD. The pound continues to push north, approaching the 2018 highs. The pair broke by means of the psychologically essential stage of 1.4000 on Friday, February 19, recording a weekly excessive on the top of 1.4035. It accomplished the buying and selling session on the similar stage 1.4000, after a slight rebound.
The American foreign money misplaced to the British one amid weak information from the US labor market. Traders anticipated a lower within the variety of preliminary functions for unemployment advantages from 848 thousand to 765 thousand, whereas, quite the opposite, it rose to 861 thousand over the week. The variety of secondary functions was not encouraging both, it decreased from 4.558 million to 4.494 million, as a substitute of the forecasted 4.413 million. Traders had been quick to recall the statements of the FRS officers that it might take multiple 12 months to return the labor market to the earlier ranges, and that it was essential to take new measures to help the US financial system.
However the information on the buyer market and enterprise exercise, launched within the UK final week, regarded fairly good. The Markit index in February was at 49.7 towards 39.5, solely barely in need of 50, the edge that separates progress in financial exercise from its fall. These figures have as soon as once more strengthened the arrogance of consumers of the British foreign money that the Financial institution of England will chorus from allocating new funds below QE and from reducing the rate of interest. Because of this, the GBP/USD pair went additional up, taking the subsequent essential milestone – 1.4000;
– USD/JPY. The principle developments of this pair, in addition to EUR/USD, had been decided final week by disappointing information from the US labor market and a pointy rise in authorities bond yields. The Japanese GDP information launched on Monday 15 February, though was considerably higher than the forecast (3.0% versus 2.3%), had no impact on market sentiment, as soon as once more exhibiting that the speed of this pair is being fashioned within the USA.
Recall that the opinions of specialists final week had been divided virtually equally: 40% supported the expansion of the pair, 30% had been for its fall and as a lot for lateral motion. And, generally, everybody turned out to be proper. The pair grew for the primary half of the week, reaching a top of 106.20, then it fell, and the end of the five-day interval happened close to the place the place it had already began on February 08 – at 105.40;
– cryptocurrencies. As we predicted, bitcoin has hit the $50,000 bar and is quoted at $55,000 on the time of writing. Ranging from February 01, the principle cryptocurrency added about 60% in weight, the expansion of Ethereum (ETH/USD) amounted to rather less than 50%, the chief on this three was Litecoin (LTC/USD) with 80%.
Basically, the state of affairs for the digital market is sort of constructive. Even conservative constructions comparable to American banks have turned their views in its course. The oldest US financial institution, BNY Mellon, has introduced the beginning of labor with bitcoin and different digital property. One other main US financial institution, JPMorgan Chase, can also be able to help bitcoin buying and selling. It grew to become recognized that JPMorgan Chase organized a digital assembly in January with the participation of 1000’s of merchants and gross sales professionals from completely different components of the world, throughout which it inquired about their curiosity in buying and selling BTC. And final week, one other financial institution, Goldman Sachs, held a closed discussion board for workers and prospects on the subject of cryptocurrencies, at which the speaker was Mike Novogratz, CEO of Galaxy Digital.
The statements of plenty of US politicians and officers even have a constructive affect on the value of digital property. For instance, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez introduced that he had already taken plenty of steps to legalize cryptocurrency. “We’ve got made bitcoin an obtainable foreign money for potential traders. As well as, workers can obtain salaries in cryptocurrency, which is a big step ahead,” he wrote on Twitter. Candidate for mayor of New York and former candidate for US President Andrew Younger supported his colleague, saying that he’ll attempt to make the monetary heart of the world turn out to be a middle for cryptocurrencies as nicely. And St. Louis Fed chief James Bullard referred to as bitcoin a rival for gold.
Institutional traders proceed to purchase each cryptocurrencies and shares of miners and crypto funds. So, the Grayscale Investments fund added 20,000 ETH to its Ethereum portfolio final week, bringing its quantity to $6 billion. One other impetus for the expansion of the BTC/USD pair was MicroStrategy’s determination to boost one other $900 million to purchase bitcoins.
Total, the availability / demand ratio stays in favor of bitcoin: 150,000 BTC cash had been mined and virtually 360,000 had been purchased again during the last 5 months of 2020, and traders hope that this stability will proceed sooner or later.
On the similar time, consumers have a look at the pinnacle of Tesla Elon Musk, whose tweets alone push the quotes sharply upward. Nevertheless, the US Securities and Trade Fee (SEC) is now concerned with his “creativity” on Twitter, contemplating that the billionaire’s calls to purchase digital property fall below the regulation on the supply and promoting of securities and could be considered unregistered brokerage actions and makes an attempt to control the market. If confirmed, Elon Musk may face large fines. Within the meantime, the entrepreneur stated that he was taking a break and would now not submit tweets, no less than within the close to future.
As for the whole cryptocurrency market capitalization, even with out Musk’s tweets, it grew over the week from $1,458 billion to $1,625 billion. And the Crypto Worry & Greed Index is slowly however inexorably approaching its most worth of 100 factors. It has now reached 93, which signifies a robust overheating of the market.
As for the forecast for the approaching week, summarizing the views of plenty of specialists, in addition to forecasts made on the idea of quite a lot of strategies of technical and graphical evaluation, we will say the next:
– EUR/USD. The European Union continues to be below blockade of restrictions because of the COVID-19 pandemic. However in the USA, not every thing is as rosy as anticipated. Weak information on the labor market, the expansion of preliminary functions for unemployment advantages put stress on the greenback.
It may be understood from the statements of ECB executives that even when bond yields in Europe proceed to rise, the financial institution is unlikely to extend the amount of the quantitative easing (QE) programme. Officers from the Governing Council of the ECB imagine that the measures they’ve taken are fairly adequate, it simply takes a while for them to have the utmost constructive impact.
The state of affairs is strictly the other on the opposite aspect of the Atlantic Ocean. Judging by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s appeals to the US Congress and the Federal Reserve minutes printed on February 18, QE volumes will proceed to extend. The comfortable financial coverage will proceed till the financial system of this nation exhibits regular progress. The following measure would be the adoption of one other stimulus package deal value $1.9 trillion.
In such a state of affairs it’s logical to anticipate a weakening of the greenback within the medium time period, and the rise of the EUR/USD pair first to the zone of 1.2200-1.2300, after which return to the January excessive of 1.2350. 65% of analysts agree with this state of affairs. However as for the weekly forecast, the image is completely different.
The bulk (70%) of specialists imagine that the pair ought to retest the help within the 1.2020 zone within the close to future and attempt to attain the February 05 low of 1.1955. This bearish improvement is supported by 15% of the oscillators on H4 and D1, which give indicators that the pair is overbought.
The remainder of the oscillators, in addition to 75% of the pattern indicators, are coloured inexperienced. However graphical evaluation on each time frames attracts consolidation within the vary 1.2020-1.2155.
As for the occasions of the week, right here the speeches of the pinnacle of the ECB Christine Lagarde on Monday 22 February and the pinnacle of the Federal Reserve Jerome Powell within the US Congress on Wednesday 24 February are of curiosity, in addition to annual information on GDP and the amount of orders for capital and sturdy items in the USA to be printed on Thursday 25 February;
– GBP/USD. It’s clear that 100% of the pattern indicators and 85% of oscillators on H4 and D1 level north. The remaining 15% of the oscillators give indicators that the pair is overbought. The overwhelming majority of analysts (75%) are additionally awaiting a correction to the south. True, of their opinion, this will likely not occur within the coming week, however within the first half of March. Assist ranges are 1.3950, 1.3850, 1.3775, 1.3600.
The potential for British foreign money progress has not but been exhausted up to now. And every thing will depend upon whose structural issues, the US or the UK, will put extra stress on their nationwide currencies. This refers not solely to quantitative easing and rates of interest, but in addition the problem and yield of presidency securities, in addition to the danger of excessive inflation on account of excessively excessive price range spending.
We outlined within the first a part of the assessment how the information from the US labor market affected the pair’s habits. Comparable macro statistics on the UK labour market are anticipated to be launched within the coming week, on Tuesday 23 February. And if it appears to be like fairly optimistic, you may anticipate the continuation of the uptrend of the GBP/USD pair. Different occasions embody a speech by the British Prime Minister the day earlier than. Though, most definitely, Boris Johnson will do with out a lot specifics, and can enthusiastically speak concerning the successes of his Cupboard within the combat towards the pandemic, the file tempo of vaccinations, and the way relations with the EU are growing after Brexit;
– USD/JPY … 104.40-105.40 is the zone that the pair has visited many instances over the previous 30 weeks. This enables us to talk of it because the Pivot Level of the medium-term sideways channel 102.60-107.00. By the way in which, the utmost buying and selling vary of 440 factors on the semi-annual phase is definitely not so nice. In October, for instance, the pair made 240-point throws in simply someday.
In the intervening time, solely 35% of specialists imagine that the pair has not but accomplished its motion to the higher border of this buying and selling vary. True, 75% of oscillators and 80% of pattern indicators on D1 are on their aspect, which provides extra weight to this forecast. Resistance ranges are 105.70, 106.20, the goal is 107.00.
The alternative view is held by 65% of analysts, with the quantity rising to 80% when transferring from a weekly to a month-to-month forecast. They’ve the same variety of indicators on their aspect, on H4 this time. Assist ranges are 105.00, 104.40, 103.60, the goal is 102.60.
Graphical evaluation exhibits fluctuations of the pair within the buying and selling vary 104.40-106.20 with a predominance of bearish sentiment.
– cryptocurrencies. As bitcoin costs develop, there are fewer consumers out there. Essentially the most cautious ones left again in December, when the coin reached its earlier all-time excessive of $20,000. The following part of closing lengthy positions adopted after bitcoin’s rise to $40,000. Solely essentially the most die-hard traders and crypto followers have made it to the $50,000 stage.
Bitcoin is overbought. However after the value stepped over $55,000 on Friday night February 19, there was no energetic sale. The market froze in anticipation. Alarming indicators are already coming, although.
First, the share of sellers is rising, which has elevated from 18% to 35% over the previous two weeks. Second, about 2/Three of merchants purchase perpetual futures contracts utilizing leverage, leading to larger funding charges and fee prices whereas sustaining lengthy positions. And third, the shares of miners went down.
Nevertheless, in keeping with plenty of specialists, it’s not value ready for the onset of a brand new crypto winter. Although it could be a deep one, it’s only a correction. Furthermore, at small volumes there’s a likelihood of progress of bitcoin as much as $60,000-65,000 even by inertia. And there, a brand new wave of purchases could be triggered by FOMO – Misplaced Revenue Syndrome (Worry Of Lacking Out). In any case, worry and greed are recognized to drive the market.
Lisa Edwards, sister of self-proclaimed bitcoin creator Craig Wright, has predicted that the primary cryptocurrency would rise to $142,000. Primarily based on Elliott Wave Idea, she advised that digital gold would rise to $90,000 by Might 2021, decline to $55,000 by January 2022, and skyrocketing to $142,000 in March 2023. After that, in keeping with Edwards, the cryptocurrency market expects a bearish pattern.
However although the expansion of the BTC/USD pair might proceed within the close to future, you could be very cautious about purchases at present ranges. Most analysts take into account them to be fairly dangerous and recommend ready for a rollback, and solely then open new lengthy positions.
NordFX Analytical Group
Discover: These supplies usually are not funding suggestions or pointers for working in monetary markets and are meant for informational functions solely. Buying and selling in monetary markets is dangerous and may end up in an entire lack of deposited funds.
Google Pay and Samsung Pay will soon let you pay with cryptocurrencies
You’ll quickly have the ability to make funds utilizing your cryptocurrency funds through Google Pay and Samsung Pay, in line with a current announcement from cryptocurrency funds supplier BitPay. Just some days in the past, the corporate introduced Apple Pay help for its BitPay Card, permitting customers to make funds utilizing Bitcoin and different cryptocurrencies on the platform. It now plans to carry comparable performance to Google Pay and Samsung Pay.
In its official Apple Pay help announcement, BitPay revealed that it’s planning to carry Google Pay and Samsung Pay help later this quarter. As soon as it formally rolls out, customers will have the ability to add their BitPay Card to each Google Pay and Samsung Pay and make funds utilizing their cryptocurrency funds. The service will mechanically convert supported cryptocurrencies, together with Bitcoin, Bitcoin Money, Ether, USDC, GUSD, PAX, and BUSD, into fiat forex for the funds. The service shall be supported in every single place you need to use a standard Mastercard debit card.
In an announcement about the identical, BitPay’s CEO Stephen Pair, stated, “We’ve hundreds of BitPay Pockets app clients utilizing the BitPay Card who’re all the time on the lookout for new locations and methods to spend their crypto. Including Apple Pay and shortly Google and Samsung Pay makes it simple and handy to make use of the BitPay Card in additional locations from day-to-day gadgets to luxurious purchases.”
As of now, BitPay hasn’t shared an actual launch date for Google Pay and Samsung Pay help. However because it’s already obtainable on Apple Pay, it shouldn’t be lengthy earlier than it rolls out to Android customers. As Android Authority points out, this isn’t the primary cryptocurrency service to supply integration with a significant cellular funds platform. In style cryptocurrency alternate Coinbase announced similar functionality for its Coinbase Card in March final 12 months, permitting customers to pay with cryptocurrencies through Google Pay.
Mining Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies using Raspberry Pi
Author: Darhan Saami
Bitcoin has been a source of fascination for people all over the world. Prices of Bitcoin have been on an incline for some time now. This incline has mostly been a general trend for almost all cryptocurrencies. Trading at more than 48000 USD as of February 2021, Bitcoin is by far one of the more popular cryptocurrencies in the world. Since Bitcoin offers excellent returns, and Raspberry Pi is a very affordable gadget, we will evaluate whether mining Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies using Raspberry Pi is worth it?
In simple terms, cryptocurrency mining is the process that uses computers to solve cryptographic equations. This process ultimately helps us obtain cryptocurrencies. These complex cryptographic functions are solved, and then their record is processed and saved in a public ledger known as the blockchain. Furthermore, mining also depends a lot on luck. Therefore, the more powerful your computer is, the greater your chance of mining cryptocurrencies at greater efficiency.
Bitcoin uses the same method for its mining process. Although it is trendy, it is not the only frenzy cryptocurrency out there. Many users recommend alternate cryptocurrencies for compatibility with Raspberry Pi.
To start mining cryptocurrencies on your Raspberry Pi, you will require some additional accessories while setting up. In the following lines, we will give a short overview of the accessories you might need:
- Raspberry Pi 3 or 4, preferably.
- SD card running Raspbian compatible with network access.
- Any screen and keypad kit compatible with your Raspberry Pi. We recommend Adafruit 16×2 LCD.
- An I2C device.
- You will also have to install Adafruit Pi code libraries on your Raspberry Pi before commencing the mining process.
- A USB Bitcoin mining device. However, you do not need to mine Bitcoin only.
- A powered USB hub. You will need it for USB-powered mining devices. Typically, a USB power hub can power up to 4 mining devices.
- A Bitcoin wallet.
- A mining pool account.
The first thing you will need to do to get going is to download a Bitcoin wallet. It is a computer program that gives you a unique wallet address. This address is a unique string of letters and numbers which will receive and store Bitcoins. You can download this program from the following link:
Once downloaded, you will have to complete the installation setup before you can run the program. Once that is done, you will have to save a file called wallet.dat onto your computer. This file is your Bitcoin wallet. It is crucial to keep it safe, as losing it means you will also lose all your Bitcoins along with the file.
Once you have your wallet, the next step is to create a mining pool account. The pool serves as a platform to allow multiple people to mine collectively. Since Bitcoin algorithms are very complex, larger groups of people can mine at a greater efficiency than a single device mining all by itself. There are plenty of mining pools around, and you can use any one of them. The pool I used to mine my Bitcoin is called Slush’s Pool.
Once you have created a mining pool account, it will ask you for your unique wallet address or a Bitcoin payout address to store your Bitcoin. Having provided, all you need to do is create one or multiple worker accounts on the mining pool. A worker has unique login credentials. You could even create more than one worker in case some of them fail at mining your cryptocurrency. A worker can be created by going to ‘My Account’ and then clicking on ‘Register New Worker’ and giving it a name.
Now you are ready to set up your Raspberry Pi device.
The operating system used by Raspberry Pi is called the Raspbian. We recommend you use a fresh Raspbian installation before commencing the mining process. It is reasonably easy to install the Raspbian. If you are unsure about installing it, you can check our other blog or run a Google search about a guide on how to install NOOBS on a Raspberry Pi using Mac or Windows.
It is important to note that cryptocurrency mining consumes lots of units of power. Therefore it is recommended that you use a powered USB hub during this process. Bitcoin needs excessive and stable power input, so you could also mine alternate cryptocurrencies that require lesser units of power, perhaps.
Now that you have attached a powered USB hub to your Raspberry Pi, the next step is to install the required libraries for Bitcoin mining. For this, you will need to do some coding too. The miner that you are to install is a source file. You will have to convert it into binary before you can install it. Furthermore, there are other libraries and dependencies that you need to install before you start mining. Up next, we will provide you with steps that you can follow to install what you need.
Go to your Raspbian desktop and double-click on LCTerminaland.
Type in the following pieces of code on the program:
These codes will take a few minutes to compile. Do not worry if your screen gets spammed with lines of code that you cannot understand. It is also normal for this process to take a while, so do not fret. The above lines of code serve the purpose of installing dependencies on your Raspberry Pi. Once this process gets completed, you want to download the BFGMiner. You can download the BFGMiner by typing in the following set of commands:
Again, you will have to wait for a while until this code gets compiled. The screen in front of you will get clustered yet again. However, now you are almost done, and you can start mining. Provided that you have used the same mining pool as me, Slush’s Pool, you can type in the following commands to start mining:
./bfgminer -o stratum.bitcoin.cz:3333 -O username.worker:password -S all
Congratulations! You have successfully started mining Bitcoin on your Raspberry Pi. Information on the screen is not necessarily easy to comprehend, so we will give you a list of things you may look out for.
- Current mining speed: this gives you the speed at which you are currently mining. The rule of thumb is that the more your speed, the merrier it is.
- Number of accepted shares: This shows the number of shares accepted by your miner in the pool. A larger number of shares means a better payoff.
You are now mining Bitcoin in a very power-efficient way. Raspberry Pi typically consumes 4 Watts of power compared to regular miners, which have power ratings above 700W. While there are advantages associated with Raspberry Pi’s power efficiency, they are far outweighed monetarily by traditional miners that can mine significantly higher rates earning more quantifiable profits. You can connect more Raspberry Pi’s to increase the speed of mining.
At this point, we must consider the trade-offs of mining Bitcoin using a Raspberry Pi. Raspberry Pi is not a suitable device to mine cryptocurrencies if you want to earn profits because of its lower power consumption, which eventually translates into less Bitcoin mined. Typically, even 24 hours of mining using a Raspberry Pi would likely earn you Bitcoin equivalent to less than 1 penny, despite its astronomical exchange rates. Therefore, we do not see much of a commercial value in using Raspberry Pi to mine Bitcoin. However, it is an excellent and affordable choice set up to mine for other purposes. These purposes could entail learning or teaching others how to mine cryptocurrencies. You could also experiment around with various other cryptocurrencies to get a greater grasp of mining. All of this could come in handy before you decide to invest in regular miners that are far more expensive and contribute to excessive and unpleasant noise.
This experiment is an excellent example of the sheer number of things one could do with a Raspberry Pi. While mining Bitcoin on a Raspberry initially sounds like a very cool thing to do, I found this an unnecessary utility of the Raspberry Pi. Apart from education-related uses, it does not offer great commercial benefits. We will not recommend you invest in a Raspberry Pi just for the sake of mining some cryptocurrencies. Despite Bitcoin’s astronomical exchange rates, it might take you a long time only to break your costs of setting up this system even. There are an incredible number of things you could do on a Raspberry Pi. We recommend you put it to a better purpose.
If you’d like to try this, you can get a Raspberry Pi here.
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