21 Inc today confirmed its strategy to distribute Bitcoin Miners in consumer electronics and hardware products.
The formal endorsement of the company’s objectives followed only a brief report that already reported on the Bitcoin start-up’s ambitions – 21 Inc wanted to use the mining chips built into its hardware products to further promote Bitcoin micropayments and stimulate the general public to become familiar with Bitcoin. If you compare today’s plans with the original company plans from autumn 2014, you can see how the strategy has changed and adapted over time, even though the core message of the strategy remained virtually unchanged.
Focus on the end consumer
In a blog post on Medium, 21 Inc CEO Balaji Srinivasan discussed, for example, how this strategy could use Bitcoin to authenticate devices or subsidize smartphones in developing countries.
Nevertheless, the whole system built around the key product and the extent of product development were only confirmed by Srinivasan himself:
“Our team… has not only built a chip, but a complete chain of technologies around the chip. This also includes reference devices, data sheets, cloud backends and software protocols.”
As with 21 Inc’s recent announcements, no precise details were given about the company’s schedules or developments.
Srinivasan also announced a change in leadership: He announced that former CEO Matt Pauker would take over the board, but did not provide details of the change. IT giant Cisco and former ARM CSO Mark Templeteon were also named as investors, but there were no details about a possible upcoming financing round either.
In a mailing, 21 Inc is said to have informed various developers about the development kit of the “BitShare” mining chip. Registrations for the Dev-Kit are now accepted on the company’s website, but exact details about the delivery are also sought in vain.
Generate added value
As in the previous public statements, Srinivasan resisted speculative use cases from Bitcoin and describes how 21 Inc aims to generate added value for Bitcoin small amounts through a precisely defined area of application.
The most important are the operators of large data centers who can benefit greatly from the integration of BitShare chips. 21 Inc has already held discussions with AMD, Comcast and Intel on the integration of the chips.
“This means that any chip that performs a day-to-day function, such as equipping a graphics card chip with a BitShare chip, can generate a constant income with an intact power and Internet connection,” said Srinivasan.
Srinivasan firmly believes that companies of all sizes can save costs with the 21 Inc BitShare chips.
In addition to large companies, 21 Inc also wants to focus on individual consumers and encourage them to join the Bitcoin network.
As can be seen in the 2014 company overview, 21 Inc wants to unite large companies and individual consumers in a huge mining pool and thus significantly increase the mining power and thus the income of each individual.
In addition to the everyday use cases for the BitShare chip, Srinivasan emphasized the integration into mobile phones, which will benefit users in developing countries in particular. The Bitcoin balance created by mobile phones could be used for online payments at the point where credit cards are normally requested. Most people in developing countries usually don’t have an account or credit card.
In addition, the successful iPhone subsidy model could also be transferred to 21 Inc technology. Users could, for example, purchase the latest models more cheaply if, in return and over a longer period of time, they prospect for Bitcoin shares and use them to offset the difference. The telephone is quasi self-financing – at least in part.