New guidelines issued by Apple’s App Store have banned crypto mining on iOS devices, a move which is apparently prompted by a concern for rapid draining of batteries.
“Apps, including any third party advertisements displayed within them, may not run unrelated background processes, such as cryptocurrency mining,” the new policy states in part.
The company goes on to explain that apps should not generate excessive heat, drain battery energy or place unnecessary strain on the device resources.
All of these are characteristics of crypto mining, which involves solving complex mathematical puzzles. Due to the complexity of the puzzles and the competitive nature of the activity, miners require powerful computers which consume an extraordinary amount of energy giving off lots of heat in the process.
In order to maximize on efficiency, miners in many cases create device networks, which may include iPads and iPhones. But the new directive extends to all Apple devices including phones, tablets and laptops.
Cloud-Based Mining Still a Possibility
The only way a miner could continue to carry out crypto mining on iOS devices would be if the process is carried out off-device, for instance, using cloud-based mining.
Generating excessive heat and drawing an extraordinary amount of power are both potentially harmful for devices.
Apple’s restrictions against crypto mining on iOS devices call to mind a similar move by Google Chrome. In February this year, the search engine announced that it would ban all crypto mining extensions from the Chrome Store.
On Apple devices, apps and crypto wallets that facilitate the transmission or transaction of digital coins are still allowed to operate.
However, any apps that facilitate Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) should strictly originate from established financial institutions and must be in compliance with local regulations.
App developers who try to make extra cash by having other people’s devices mine for them in the background will be among the people most affected by these new regulations.