A new article out today on Android Central by Jerry Hildenbrand discusses similarities between smartphones and computers that could eventually lead to the cost of phones increasing exponentially as a result of increasing demand for blockchain mining hardware.
Current markets price phones at super high prices already, with new flagship iPhone and Samsung phones costing in excess of $1000 in some areas, the increasing demand for technology in general has caused the mobile phone market to boom. I believe this however is down to fashion trends, rather than a demand for cutting edge technology.
In his article, Hildenbrand outlines the process of creating Random Access Memory Modules (RAM) that are used in both mobile phones and of course in computers that require increased memory for blockchain mining. He says:
“It will make a small difference in the cost of RAM. But even if the cost of a RAM module doubles, we're only talking a few dollars at most because of the way a phone is built and how it's different from RAM sticks you put in a PC.”
In this, he is referring to the increased demand for RAM modules on the whole causing an increase in their price. Specifically, within blockchain mining, if people want the technology, they will buy it.
Hildenbrand’s argument seems to resonate the idea that people won’t pay extra for mobile phones if the price goes up, due to a generic demand for their core parts for blockchain mining, as, I have mentioned, phones have a much more value in terms of their fashion sentiment, essentially blockchain mining isn’t really a viable application for smartphones, yet at least.
So, whilst some developers are starting to worry that as the price of hardware goes up, the price of the final product will go up, Hildenbrand suggests that this won’t be the case as the manufacturers know an increase in price would have a colossal affect on sales, therefore, as they make the working parts themselves anyway, it seems more viable for them to absorb the cost and only apply some of that back to the customer. In short, even if the base price of all working phone parts triples, Hildenbrand believes we as consumers, will only see a small fraction of that.
I feel that this is an interesting topic to explore and perhaps as technology develops, the idea of blockchain mining phones that can partake in serious mining activity may become a more attractive prospect. Ultimately however, smartphones already do a hell of a lot, I don’t believe that blockchain mining is something that smartphones are missing out on just yet. In terms of the core materials that are similar in phones and computers, as Hildenbrand points out, specific phone RAM modules for example are produced by the phone manufacturers anyway, they know how much their upper price cap is so really, outside of inflation obviously, why would they start charging more money for phones when the demand for the technology is not yet there?
A message to those who are worried about this – stop worrying, for now.