ASIC miners + 1559 + quick PoS… Potential problem?
Disclaimer: I'm just a guy who mines with my 3080 on my computer that I bought for gaming/school. Using the cash to help me pay off my college tuition. I don't really care about mining profits reducing because once it isn't profitable anymore I'll just continue to use my computer as I always have.
So I've been a little bit concerned with the changes that will happen to Ethereum in the next year. I think that they are all a step in the right direction, but due to them all occuring so close to eachother I believe this could have the potential for disaster. Here's why:
ASIC miners coming online: this isn't a problem on its own, but just keep this in mind for now. Some of the most efficient ASICs Eth has ever seen are coming online and are increasing network difficulty significantly. These are centralized mostly in China (see: Bitcoin), and estimates state they could currently represent anywhere from 10-40% of current network hashrate.
EIP 1559: Again, I think this is a great idea and a needed UX change for ETH. However, with ASICs coming online and increased difficulty, I fear this will kick many GPU miners off of the network. This is because ASIC miners cannot switch off the network, and they are also very power efficient and pay very little for power. Personally I think that by August/September, GPU mining will not be profitable anymore.
PoS merge: this could happen as early as October from what I have heard. Again, I think this is a great and necessary change. However, I believe that there is very high chance that by October, ASIC miners will comprise 60%+ of the network hashrate based on these two reasons alone. I do not think they will take the merge with open arms. You are talking about people who invested hundreds of thousands of dollars on massive ASIC farms that will be left useless after the merge to PoS. They have no resell value and cannot be used to mine anything else. By the time the merge occurs, they might not have made back their initial investment, and will be hoping to secure their profits at all costs. I think a 51% attack from ASIC miners is very likely to occur by the time of the merge.
If Eth shoots up to like double or more of what it is today, GPU miners will stay on and this is less likely to happen, but I wouldn't count on it. There are very simple things we can do to avoid this but it needs to be done sooner rather than later. I'm not asking for a delayed merge or to stop EIP-1559. I want both of those to happen. I'm asking that the community considers an implementation of ASIC resistance to help prevent an attack on the network.
I'm open to any discussion and counterargument. These are just my thoughts.