Mine Apple data into the cloud

Mining Bitcoin on the Mac: This is how mining works under macOS (and why you don't get rich with it)

What about cryptocurrencies on the iPhone and iPad?

We say deliberately on the Mac, because Apple has rightly banned mining apps for cryptocurrencies from the App Store. Because they consume so much energy that they quickly empty the battery. This also has a negative effect on the durability of your smartphone.

You can very well use a so-called "wallet", that is, a purse for crypto currencies on your iPhone or iPad. Most of them are comparable in operation, although not always as comfortable as an app from your house bank. You can deposit or withdraw currency.

Bitcoin mining on the Mac, is that possible?

First of all: Yes, of course you can also “mine” bitcoins on the Mac.

Nowadays there are two types of "cryptocurrency mining". One is comparable to a mix of leasing and fund savings. Because you rent suitable mining hardware from suitable platforms, some of which are even quite dubious, and are then promised a "return". Basically, however, this return is gradually decreasing. Because you always keep the same mining hardware over a term of, for example, 12 or 24 months. The algorithms to be calculated, which then discard Bitcoins, are becoming more and more complex and so the time until you generate them is becoming longer and longer. We strongly advise against such an investment. You can also invest in highly speculative funds and have a similar risk.

The other way to get Bitcoins is actually to provide computing power yourself. There are a few apps, also for the Mac, that are able to calculate the algorithms.

How does mining for cryptocurrencies work?

Before we introduce you to specific options for mining on the Mac, we would like to clarify the basics. The idea of ​​the blockchain and comparable decentralized systems behind cryptocurrencies provides that a pot full of gold is available at the beginning. So those who are there from the start get the most. Put simply, your computing power is used to anonymously verify transactions. You will be compensated for helping with this. The difficulty, however, is that the data to be calculated becomes more and more complex over time. So it takes a lot longer to mine bitcoins today than it did at the beginning of this crypto currency in 2009 (see Wikipedia).

Options over options

You can even mine for cryptocurrencies "completely by yourself". The appropriate software then connects you directly to the "blockchain". But because calculating Bitcoins has become so complex, it is absolutely not a worthwhile undertaking.

There is also something like cooperatives. There are so-called "mining pools" in which each of the participants is assigned a part of a problem that is complex to be calculated and whose resources are used for this purpose. You are stronger in a group. It is comparable to playing the lottery in a syndicate. It will come as no surprise to you that the very largest “syndicates” for Bitcoins are located in China. It is estimated that 81 percent of the network transactions achieved by the mining pools now come from China. In fact, many participants from other countries also contribute to this. Because the larger a pool, the greater the chance of a return. One difficulty at this point is that you will only get the generated crypto currency paid out when a certain amount is reached. Because Bitcoin transfers cost cyber money. If the mining community's account has been hacked in the meantime - which has happened in the past - your money may also be gone.

In addition, there is the previously mentioned “cloud mining”, in which you rent the resources and others take over the mining for you and distribute a return (or not). But that can be very expensive. Several thousand euros are often due in advance, and you will then only receive a “possible” return after months.

Mining on the Mac, specifically

You download mining software to the Mac or use a browser-based solution. Depending on which software you are using, you can choose one of the methods discussed above. If you want to join a pool, enter the pool data. You can then use the mining community's web interface to find out how much you have contributed to calculating tokens and how large your share is. But don't be surprised that this is negligibly small.

As a rule, you also enter your own Bitcoin address so that the "money" is paid out there. You can get this address by setting up your own wallet or opening an "account" at one of the cryptocurrency trading venues such as Coinbase or via Bitcoin.de. Both trading venues are particularly suitable for beginners, as they create a connection between the local currency and the cryptocurrency.

Beware of hidden fees

On trading platforms like Coinbase you can trade different cryptocurrencies, more or less in "real time". You top up the account there by bank transfer or credit card. But that's exactly where a cost trap lies buried. Because some banks now charge separate fees on cryptocurrency transactions. So be careful not to be surprised afterwards.

For "real" crypto mining, providers develop both special hardware and software. On the one hand, you can make mining more effective by optimizing the algorithms. On the other hand, you can use hardware that is particularly good for solving the tasks at hand. The trend is towards alliances of graphics cards. Because GPUs are better suited than CPUs to run the algorithms.

MacMiner is a graphical interface for various command line mining apps, including CGMiner and others. As such, it is suitable for entry. Because you would have to compile the other apps yourself before you can use them.

  • CGMiner (currently the most popular software, source code on Github),
  • MacMiner (compiled by CGMiner and others),
  • BFGMiner (must be compiled).

Note: Mining and trading cryptocurrencies is not risk-free. In any case, you should make sure that you do not keep this digital money secret from the eyes of the tax authorities. Profits from speculative transactions are taxable. If the tax office ever finds out about you, it will be expensive.

Bitcoin is not the only cryptocurrency on the market. There are dozens of them (Ethereum, Monero and others). Each one uses a comparable or different software architecture and therefore also requires different calculations. Every crypto currency has advantages and disadvantages and every new issue is always a risky promise of quick profit. Do a lot of research before you get involved with cryptocurrencies.

After a hype in recent years, there is currently a lull in the market. Because of the current financial crisis on the stock markets, one would have thought that right now crypto currencies would stabilize and gain. But just as gold is currently not a real alternative for a secure investment, Bitcoin and Co. are certainly not. They have shown that they cannot be an antithesis to general market trends.