(Bloomberg) -- Digital payments company Block Inc., formerly known as Square, has finished the development of its Bitcoin mining chip as Chief Executive Jack Dorsey continues to advocate for a more accessible and decentralized system — an effort he’s championed since 2021. 

The three-nanometer chip could be a major player in the fast-growing mining industry because such chips are a key component in creating some of the most advanced computers. 

The chip, which powers specialized computers to mine Bitcoin, has been a bottleneck for any newcomers to compete with the incumbent as the development process can be time-consuming and laden with hefty overhead costs. Only a handful of chip manufacturers based in Asia have seen significant profits amid the crypto boom, with Beijing-based Bitmain dominating the market, earning billions of dollars. Chipmaking giant Intel ended its Bitcoin mining series amid a crypto market rout in early 2023.  

“This marks an important milestone in our Bitcoin mining project,” the San Francisco-based company said in a statement Tuesday. “Additionally, with our chip design complete, we are excited to share that we are developing a full bitcoin mining system.” Dorsey first announced Block’s efforts to develop the Bitcoin mining system in 2021, along with the introduction of a hardware wallet for the cryptocurrency.

The company is “in the process of completing a full tapeout of the design with a leading global semiconductor foundry,” according to the statement. 

Bitcoin mining is an energy-intensive process in which miners use the machines, or rigs, to validate transaction data on the blockchain and earn a reward in the form of the token. Miners are coping with a heavy blow from the halving, a Bitcoin code update that drastically reduces their main revenue. More efficient machines can help them save power costs and make up some of the margins lost to the halving event which took place last week. 

“Our mining chip will utilize the most advanced semiconductor process currently available and will deliver the performance required for mining operators of all types to survive and thrive in the fifth mining epoch (the period following the recent 4th halving of the block subsidy) and beyond,” the company said.

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