The history of blockchain technology is proving to be an interesting one. It began as the foundation of numerous cryptocurrencies, such as the world-famous Bitcoin. Over the years, it would gain a new name for itself by spreading across an array of industries. It is as disruptive as it is revolutionary, with many pre-existing systems already accepting blockchain integration.
And this is only the beginning. The technology holds so much potential to impact other fields that it has not yet touched.
A similar topic was covered in two previous articles: “Use Cases for Blockchain” and “Blockchain Applications in the Real World.” However, a lot has changed since the publication of those pieces. Now that we are in a new decade, it is worth taking a look at the technology’s progress. Likewise, where it could go from here.
Blockchain technology is a decentralized ledger that keeps a record of a digital asset’s origin. The technology is quite simple to understand when you take its name literally. It is a “chain” consisting of “blocks” that are full of valuable information. Blockchain, at its core, is a specific type of database. The tech basically exists as a shared database consisting of various entries that need confirmation from peer-to-peer networks. What’s more, they need to undergo encryption.
Over time, its strengths and benefits would capture the attention of various fields. Its popularity would help display the application of blockchain technology in finance. However, entrepreneurs believe that the tech has more potential than just disrupting the world of finance. In fact, it could transform many more industries. By design, the data residing on a blockchain cannot go through any modifications. This is a key factor in its reputation as a valid disruptor for different industries, such as healthcare and cybersecurity.
Overall, there are countless use cases for a transparent – not to mention verifiable – record of transaction data. This is especially prevalent seeing as how blockchains operate via a decentralized platform that requires no central supervision. This makes them completely resistant to any attempts at fraud.
Companies utilize blockchain as a means to drive greater transparency and accuracy across the digital information ecosystem. In doing so, they increase awareness of the technology in numerous industries that would otherwise have no connection to it. Infrastructure, public policy, the sky’s the limit.
Capturing the attention of industries
Blockchain is revolutionary tech and it has an impressive amount of application across various industries. In the modern era, it is obvious that the competition among businesses is as high as it is cutthroat. In order to gain a competitive advantage over the others, your business strategies need to be relevant. Put simply, they must flow with whatever trends appeal to your consumers.
This technology is actually one of several trends that offer the perfect solutions to help businesses flourish. Whether they be finance, eCommerce, or even gaming, blockchain can help them grow. Some intrinsic blockchain features that provide assistance for businesses to evolve include the following:
- The technology is decentralized
- There is a guarantee of transparency
- High-quality security for data
- It promotes peer-to-peer communication
- It is traceable and cannot undergo any changes
Despite some challenges, blockchain continues to be a key ingredient and primary foundation in the creation of new developments. The amount of projects it has helped create and industries it has disrupted is staggering. On top of that, there is a sense of diversity among these projects and industries due to their different purposes.
Regardless of if your business is big or small, your company must maintain an efficient supply chain. One that has very few flaws in its system. Data-driven supply chain management (SCM) provides stable visibility for overseeing every crucial piece of information concerning a company’s goods and services. This ranges from acquisition to production and the eventual delivery to consumers. However, human errors are still damaging to this sector.
As blockchain technology integration increases in frequency, the entire operation becomes a lot more simple. Setting aside the elimination of superfluous regulators, it provides a transparent platform where every data exchange is time-stamped. Moreover, they are sequentially put into storage in the decentralized ledger. This covers everything from procurement to manufacturing and delivery. This system makes keeping track of the information quite smooth for certain company members.
Hedge funds and trading stock
For a long time, companies have been working hard to simplify buying, selling, and trading stocks. Nowadays, new blockchain-centric startups are trying to automate and secure this process more accurately and competently than any previous solutions.
Partnerships with trading exchanges and networks will boost blockchain’s popularity even further. Blockchain company, Chain, has successfully aided in coordinating a live blockchain integration. It would go on to connect Nasdaq’s stock exchange with the banking infrastructure of Citi. Numerai is taking the general model of hedge funds (i.e. hiring various traders and quants) and decentralizing it. They send encrypted datasets to its quants and request that they create predictive models. The best contributors will receive a reward in the form of Numerai’s native token, Numeraire.
Numerai made an announcement in October of 2020 of a new project: Numerai Signals. It will accept signals from models that receive training from any type of dataset beyond just its own. At the time, the company was saving $50 million worth of its Numeraire as rewards for those who submit the most original signals.
Wills are a specific type of contract that provides an optimal use case for blockchain smart contracts. On top of verifying the departed’s death, litigation in relation to the will typically involve challenges to a will’s authenticity. That is to say, whether or not the legal interpretation corroborates the deceased’s intentions.
Indeed, incorporating blockchain technology will not completely eliminate these challenges. However, the application will make it easier to pinpoint factual information and provide valid transaction data. Not only that but it can help dispute any claims that lack merit.
Japanese startup, Zweispace, has a Smarter Contract platform that is helping them create a self-executing will system. By also using a blockchain, they can automatically distribute an inheritance trust’s assets to beneficiaries upon receiving confirmation of the trustee’s death. This will remove any need for executors, as well as prevent court battles concerning the will’s integrity.
Shipment location info
A majority of logistics companies nowadays only offer the details of main locations, such as city hubs, collection centres, and sorting facilities. The precise live location details are rarely – if ever- known. This means that if the system fails, then all of the data is gone.
With blockchain, users can easily implement a system that gathers location data from an array of interconnected systems. They can also provide their customers with the exact location details. This project’s application has the potential to extend to other fields. Airlines can track down lost baggage and car rental services can track rented cars.
When there’s competition, innovation will surely follow. However, the number of businesses that are fighting for the most amount of attention nowadays is mind-boggling. This is why upping one’s game is important, especially when it comes to marketing businesses with inventive ideas.
Blockchain network integration with marketing activities effectively addresses the basic needs of the customers. Generally speaking, these are transparency and proper protection of data. Moreover, this tech will allow business owners to monitor their patrons’ behaviour regarding their products and services. Smart marketers can even leverage the results (i.e. data) that these observations capture. Doing so will enable them to create a strong marketing campaign that can generate incredible sales.
There are a lot of fake charities out there. When a disaster strikes, you can bet they will come out of the woodwork to exploit people’s generosity. These organizations regularly loot donations in the name of charity. A disgusting thing to do, no doubt.
Many people wish to donate money to a good cause, but they are wary about where the money is going. Will it reach those in need?
Blockchain gives those making charitable donations the ability to keep track of where their monetary gifts are going. Similarly, it lets them know when they arrive and whose hands they fall into. Blockchain can bring transparency to online charity trusts. Contributors can watch the donation’s journey in real-time and confirm whether or not it reaches those who deserve it.
Using blockchain technology to secure data can lead to a comparatively safer journey. On top of that, it will provide another layer of convenience for the traveler.
Turning a conventional, material ticket into a digital token introduces a brand new layer of security. With smart contracts as part of the ticket token, airlines can control the sale and use of tickets. In doing so, they will provide verified experiences for their patrons. Furthermore, it can help construct accurate logs of aircraft maintenance and prevent instances of overbooking, among other things.
Russian air service, S7 Airlines, deployed a private Ethereum blockchain and smart contracts to distribute and sell tickets. The platform has allegedly cut down the times of airline/agent settlements from 14 days to a little over 20 seconds. In 2019, the airline was successful in reaching $1 million in monthly ticket sales stemming from its blockchain.
Blockchain technology has gone on to change the technology industry forever. Moreover, it has garnered a reputation as being a viable option for a lot of traditional businesses. At the rate it is developing and disrupting pre-existing systems, it is not outlandish to assume that it will continue to flourish.