With an increasing number of miners, the Bitcoin network experienced a surge in mining difficulty, making it impossible for solo miners to get a block reward. Thus, the mining pool is created.
No longer limited by geographic locations, mining pools combine hashing power of miners and mining farms throughout the world. While miners are responsible for providing the hashing power, the mining pool processes the transactions. When bitcoins are received by the pool, they will be distributed to miners based on their own hashing power contribution, ensuring a stable rate of return.
Compared to solo mining, joining a mining pool brings a steady income stream. Currently, major mining pools with notable hashing power include F2Pool, Antpool, BW, BTCChina and BitFury. With the exception of BitFury, they’re all founded in China.