In cryptocurrency years, Helium is middle-aged. Along with aging, the Helium miner side hustle has significantly changed since it started.
The Helium Network began in 2013 as a network of LoRa gateway hotspots that could be deployed throughout an area by agreements with building owners, typically paid in conventional currency. However, in 2017, the company’s funds were running low, so it switched to a new strategy: offering individuals payment in cryptocurrency to operate individually owned nodes in their homes or offices.
This was when the side hustle hype about becoming a Helium cryptocurrency miner ramped up. Before the crash in Bitcoin, the Helium hype was hot and heavy. Promotors were selling people helium mining units with the “you have to get in now” or “you’ve got to see the dream” sales messages.
Initially, when the Helium mining promotion hit, it became hard or impossible to purchase a helium miner. The small units were supposed to be $500, but with demand outstripping supply, the prices skyrocketed.
For example, here is one of the sales pitches people were being pounded with.
Damon was an early adopter through a friend in the iHub Global affiliate network. But unfortunately, he got the special insider rate, paid $500 for his miner, and had to split earnings with the network marketing company. Nevertheless, at the time, it was a reasonable way to get into Helium (HNT) mining since miners were so hard to get ahold of.
Reality Was Much Different Than the Hype for the Helium Miner
Rather than go the iHub route, I purchased a miner at a premium cost in 2022 for $1,000. I knew I had a killer location at my local metropolitan airport, surrounded by other miners. So I put the antenna on the top of my giant metal airplane hangar, which helped amplify my connection with other units to make cash.
I tested the Nebra Helium miner at that location and earned the following monthly amounts.
|Month||Amount Mined||Price||Total Earned|
I sold my hangar in May and no longer had access to that location. However, I had nearly made enough to pay for my Helium miner before the sale. Not a total loss.
Once I changed the location, I wondered if the Helium miner had some technical issue since it was barely doing anything. I was getting some quirky diagnostic readings on it. Was the unit dying, or was it Helium?
In looking around at miner prices in September, I found some affordable miners on eBay for $179.90.
When I purchased the second HNT miner, the hype was dying off as the price of HNT tanked, so more affordable miners could be found by September 2022.
As I’m writing this, the price of HNT is in the dumps. Currently, it is at $4.19 per coin.
Helium Caught Exaggerating
In July 2022, Helium was said to have engaged in some questionable marketing hype saying that Lime and Salesforce were customers using the network. That revelation didn’t tank the price. Cryptocurrency has been collapsing anyway.
An article from Mashable covered the outing. “Helium is often heralded as one of the most significant success stories in the Web3 space, even landing a coveted article in The New York Times earlier this year. Since 2019, the decentralized wireless network service, which bills itself as a peer-to-peer network for the Internet of Things, has touted rideshare company Lime as one of its marquee clients, claiming the company uses its service to geolocate rentable escooters. There are numerous mentions of this partnership on its website, along with the presence of Lime’s company logo, and in press coverage with various news outlets.”
My Helium Units Are Producing Squat
The latest unit I purchased and have located at my house is in a less population-dense area. However, the external antenna is located on a metal roof. So it would seem the results would not be as stellar, but if my metal roof experience held out, it might be okay.
In the last 30 days, the new miner generated 1.96 HNT coins worth $8.21. At this rate, it will take 22 months for me to recoup my miner purchase costs. But, of course, that’s if HNT doesn’t drop further. So I’m not holding my breath on that.
Damon Has Had His HNT Miner Operational For Longer
Damon’s HNT miner went live in October of 2021. The results were encouraging, as you can see but have been dropping ever since.
But remember, Damon was part of that affiliate network iHub Global and gave up 50% of his earnings.
When he reached out to the group and asked about selling his unit to someone else, he was told something like, “You’ve got to hang in there and see the vision.”
Well, I think the data speaks all the vision I need to see.
In September 2022, Damon’s miner earned 0.52 HNT at $4.43 for a total of $2.30, of which he gave up 50%.
You Can See What You Might Earn
The Helium Explorer website can give you a lot of market intelligence.
It is my go-to site for data, seeing the reality in Helium miner locations, and making money today.
For example, I’m going to pick a random address to show you what you can earn.
Using Raleigh, NC, as our example location, you can see many areas with miners already. However, don’t let that discourage you. Density does not seem to be as important as the actual location the miner is located in.
If you look at this block of miners near my old airport location, you can see they produce nothing or less than one HNT a month.
As I write this, other miners near downtown Raleigh are doing from zero to 5.12 per month.
And while 5.12 HNT per month is a much more significant number, at the current value of HNT, that’s less than $25 per month.
But population density alone is not the key to results.
One of the highest-performing miners today is located in Austria.
This miner is using an antenna reported to be more than 30 feet tall and has a tremendous amount of reach. It looks like it might be on top of a mountain.
The last month’s earnings were reported to be $293, but this albatross is an actual albatross, topping the best-earning charts over many months.
My Helium Side Hustle Thoughts
I feel I’ve laid this side hustle bear for you to make a well-informed decision if this is right for you.
HNT mining might still be something worth pursuing under the following conditions.
- You evaluate the area you will locate your miner and see what others are earning around you. Use the Helium Explorer website to do this.
- If you think there is potential, then look for a miner that is going to be inexpensive. eBay is an excellent place to look for new units people are unloading. Buying a used unit can be problematic since ownership must be transferred.
- Consider your opportunity to place an external antenna in an excellent location to reach the most number of other miners to earn rewards.
- Be so patient with this that you appear in a coma. If this pays off for you, it will be over for a long time.
I’m sticking to my HNT miner simply because I already own it. Otherwise, my vote at $5 per HNT is to pass it by as a side hustle.
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