A mining pool or a Bitcoin mining pool like CEX.io is a collection of miners working together to reduce the volatility of their profits. Learn about Mining Pool. It's like diversification in portfolio management - or where holding 10 stocks is better than holding 1.
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When miners try and find a hash for the right blocks, they are participating in a lottery.
If there are a thousand tickets and you keep one of those tickets then the probability of you winning the lottery is one in a thousand, but if you hold 100 tickets your chances are one in ten - so you can expect Win the lottery every 10 days. With one of your tickets, you would expect to win every 1000 lotteries.
However, if you can't afford to buy 100 tickets, you can join 99 other people and form a group and have to split the reward every time you win. This means that your cash flow will get less but more often and thus lower profit volatility.
The same is true for Bitcoin and crypto currency mining. If you have a 1TH machine and Bitcoin Network, then the total hash power is 1 PetaHash then you have 1 to 1000 chances of solving each block with 10 minutes. You can't even solve it in a shorter time but by joining together with other miners in a pool you can form a team and work with a predetermined amount of profits. hundred of the hashpower you contribute to the mine. So if you have 10 TH in a 100 TH pool and you win the reward of 25 Bitcoins - you will get 10% or 2,5 BTC.
Mining pools are a great way to easily generate your income, but they cost money - usually 1-2% of your winnings. Instead of keeping the Bitcoin miner you bought - you can rent it out by purchasing a mining contract that gives you the right to use a certain amount of hash energy for a specified period of time. These are called cloud mining.
See our guide on how to join a mining pool and compare Bitcoin mining contracts that you can buy at the time of notification!