It looks like battery-draining cryptocurrency miners aren’t a problem for Google Play market anymore. Calendar 2, a popular scheduling app in Mac App Store recently embraced coin mining ability on users’ devices for the developers and users didn’t look very happy with this update.
What was the problem?
Qbix, the developer of Calendar 2 endowed the app with code to mine Monero. Albeit it was supposed to run upon users’ approval only, the bug allowed it to run indefinitely. Besides, it consumed more than the 10-20 percent of computing powers of the users’ devices. Due to the negative feedback it received, Qbix decided to remove the miner in the app.
In a statement given to Ars Technica, Qbix founder Gregory Magarshak said:
We have decided to REMOVE the miner in the app. The next version will remove the option to get free features via mining. This is for three reasons:
1) The company which provided us the miner library did not disclose its source code, and it would take too long for them to fix the root cause of the CPU issue.
2) The rollout had a perfect storm of bugs which made it seem like our company *wanted* to mine crypto-currency without people’s permission, and that goes against our whole ethos and vision for Qbix.
3) My own personal feeling that Proof of Work has a dangerous set of incentives which can lead to electricity waste on a global scale we’ve never seen before. We don’t want to get sucked into this set of incentives, and hopefully our decision to ultimately remove the miner will set some sort of precedent for other apps as well.
Ultimately, even though we technically could have remedied the situation and continued on benefiting from the pretty large income such a miner generates, we took the above as a sign that we should get out of the “mining business” before we get sucked into the Proof of Work morass of incentives.
It’s a relief for now but creates a concern about this recent trend among the developers. While many users aren’t aware of what they actually signed up for, they may end up with a bad computer performance with a poor battery life.