Bitmain-backed mining pool BTC.com is expanding its offerings to include ethereum and ethereum classic, the company announced Thursday.
BTC.com, which claims to have mined 21 percent of all bitcoin blocks last year, will offer the new mining client through its pool.btc.com portal, and will also offer an ethereum block explorer and API, according to a press release. The service will allow miners to switch their hashing power from one pool to another, depending on the market.
The move is part of an effort to "help ethereum scale its mining infrastructure," the announcement stated.
Bitmain's project director Zhong Zhuang said that the firm hopes "to expand ethereum's network by relaying ... rewards through our [Full Pay Per Share] system," which rewards miners for participating in the pool.
Notably, the new pools will include GPU and CPU mining options, the release indicated, despite the fact that Bitmain released its first ethereum-focused application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) for ethereum earlier this year.
Zhuang explained that the decision to offer GPU and CPU mining comes from the depressed prices across the crypto market this year, telling CoinDesk that "GPU miners are versatile, still profitable and are not easily replaced in a bear market. It's common for miners to split investment into both."
"Also, there are already ASIC miners for ethereum and ethereum classic which are easier to set up and are dedicated to ethash mining. This will save us from supporting a huge list of GPU coins simultaneously."
Going forward, BTC.com may consider launching mining pools for "popular coins" such as litecoin, zcash and monero, though no concrete plans have yet been made, Zhuang said – although, before any new additions, the service would have to consider a token's network, the quality of its code, its development roadmap and trading volume.
Rachel Rose O'Leary also contributed reporting.
Ethereum image via Shutterstock