The meaning of the term hash rate is the speed at which a computer is able to perform hashing computations. For cryptocurrencies, it represents the performance and efficiency of a mining machine.
Understanding the term
Hash rate refers to the measure of the total computational power used by a proof-of-work cryptocurrency network to process transactions. In other words, hash rate measures how fast a cryptocurrency miner completes these computations.
In mining, the hash rate is, therefore, directly proportional to a miner or mining pool’s profitability. If the hash rate is higher, it is an indication that the profitability of mining a block will be higher. This increases the chances of a miner receiving a block reward.
The hash rate is measured in hashes per second(h/s) along with an SI prefix such as tera, giga, and mega. For instance, a hash rate of 1Th/s means that a blockchain network computes one trillion hashes per second. ASIC miners which have more computational power are now available in the market. As a result, the hash rate for Bitcoin started rising very fast, causing a steep increase in mining difficulty.
The hash rate is the most crucial metric for assessing the strength and security of a blockchain network. As more machines are used by honest miners to discover the next block, the hash rate rises. This makes it harder for malicious agents to disrupt the network.