In January, the first mention of Intel’s application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) was revealed in an agenda for the International Solid State Circuit Conference. Less than a month later, Senior Vice President General Manager Raja M. Koduri Announced on Intel’s Newsroom page that the company is developing a more efficient means to harness computing power with a new ASIC chip.
Koduri specifically states that Intel’s focus on blockchain where they “will engage and promote an open and secure blockchain ecosystem and will help advance this technology in a responsible and sustainable way.”
Koduri mentions Intel’s commitment for scalable and sustainable solutions with their products. “We are mindful that some blockchains require an enormous amount of computing power, which unfortunately translates to an immense amount of energy…which is why we are focusing our efforts on realizing the full potential of blockchain by developing the most energy-efficient computing technologies at scale,” he says.
Intel’s blockchain accelerator chips are currently set to ship later this year and have companies like Argo Blockchain, Block (formerly known as Square), and Griid as their first customers. Based on an agreement, Intel has guaranteed that it will sell 25% of their available supply to Griid. This agreement will take effect during a period of two years after the reservation quantity has been fulfilled.
Koduri’s announcement also reveals that Intel has devoted company resources toward the development of cryptography, hashing techniques, and ultra-low voltage circuits for decades. “We expect that our circuit innovations will deliver a blockchain accelerator that has over 1000x better performance per watt than mainstream GPUs for SHA-256 based mining” says Koduri. It is important to note that GPUs produce much less hashpower for mining and are less energy intensive than ASICs.
More information on the new ASIC chips will be shared later this month at the International Solid State Circuit Conference.