Bitmain’s announcement concerning a new high-speed hardware AntMiner X3 that has been built for mining the privacy-oriented Monero evoked a negative reaction from the Monero developers.
Instead of greeting a new potential partner, Monero postponed its software upgrade in order to change the rules of the system so as to “prevent DoS attacks by ASICs.” Besides, Monero plans to upgrade the algorithm twice a month to prevent hardware manufacturers from catching up.
In a recent Reddit post, Monero unequivocally condemns ASICs as a threat to the coin decentralization. “Between now and then I will do everything in my power to help the community prevent the proliferation of centralisation-inducing ASICs on the Monero network,” states Riccardo “Fluffypony” Spagni on GitHub, Monero’s core developer.
Riccardo Spagni also warned potential customers on Twitter that Antminer X3 won’t be able to mine the coin.
In an announcement made on February 11, 2018, Monero team also hypothesizes on the security risks of ASICs centralization:
“This creates a single point of failure. For instance, a government could require these ASIC manufacturers to add a “kill-switch” which allows them to shut down a miner remotely or otherwise control it. This threat has the potential to destroy the whole network. In a similar fashion, governments could require miners to have a license to buy and operate ASICs, thereby confining ASICs to a certain group of licensed people.”
Now it’s time for the community to decide whether to accept and support the new hardware or not.