Blockchain has certainly attracted a lot of attention since the last year. It was only after the success of Bitcoin that the world came to know about the underlying fundamental technology that made it possible, namely Blockchain. More often not both these terms are used interchangeably, which further creates confusion for readers.
To simply state, Bitcoin is only one of the applications of Blockchain technology. While former is a cryptocurrency used for transaction, latter maintains the ledger of Bitcoin transaction. The only difference is that all transactions made are digital and cannot be changed at any point of time.
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Bitcoin – Tip of the Iceberg!
An open decentralized database, which relies on peer to peer network, Blockchain has questioned the very existence of third parties in transactions. Any transaction made on Blockchain needs a verification by others in the network which makes it a transparent system. A public ledger where each step is accounted for.
Many industries now look upon Blockchain as their savior against the dark dingy world of cybercrimes and intermediary party related conflicts. As technology evolves, issues are only going to increase and its time a solution was found.
Blockchain – Silver lining in the Cloud
Blockchain technology has taken the tech world by storm. It is expected to be used by countries in various fields some of them being tax collection, banks, transfer of money overseas etc. Big names like IBM have already started to look into options on how this technology can be availed to benefit them. Here are a few spaces where this technology is expected to or can make an impact.
1. Smart Contracts
Contracts have been a cause of innumerable disputes for centuries, of which some are famous globally. From time immemorial, many scandals and acts of deceit have been involved around contracts. Blockchain is going to choke the biggest issue of contracts, third party involvement. The technology will allow parties involved to exchange money, property or anything that is of value without any conflicts.
It will be a simple, transparent because of peer verification involved and cost effective system. A smart contract will be able to set the rule and penalties as well as ensure that they are followed and completed.
2. Oil Industry
This will be a mighty big leap in the industry if implemented. Oil industry has come a long way in terms of technology, however when it comes to data they seem to be lagging far behind. A lot of data transaction still happens on paper which has led to many discrepancies and financial tribulations across the globe. Implementation of this technology is expected to reduce the operational cost with the removal of third party involvement and increase supply chain efficiency.
Secure real-time data would be generated during transactions. With Blockchain in oil industry the trade will become transparent, non-time consuming and ethical. There will be reduction in cost and protection against threats. With no middle men and above-mentioned factors, the price volatility associated with the oil industry will hopefully be curbed.
3. Blockchain Cloud
Cloud services when introduced, brought about a massive change in how we see storage. From carrying bulky CD’s, USB’s and Hard Disks it all boiled down to accessing data anywhere anytime only with a username and password. To top it, you could save as much as you wish to and it’s easy on the pocket.so where’s the issue? Data leaks, cyber security to name a few. With time the cybercrime levels will only notch up, which creates an urgent demand to stay a step ahead of them at all times.
With Blockchain Cloud, the data instead of being stored at a central place would be distributed across the network. This would also reduce dependency on third party applications and drastically reduce the risk of data stealing.
This would be a much welcome application of the technology by most of the countries. Although for years, many developed countries have wanted to make voting digital however, crime breech has been the only deterrent. With Blockchain, a user would be able to vote anonymously and at the same time will be assured that his vote has been transmitted and is secure as blockchain does not allow any changes once an entry is recorded.
A political party in Denmark has already effectively used this technology in the year 2014. This would also be easy for the users and increase the voting turnover which has reduced in many countries because of lack of trust amongst the voters.
Although there are still many questions about the feasibility of blockchain in the music industry but if this happens it will be a big respite for many who have suffered because of music piracy and feuds for decades now. There is a constant tiff between the Music companies and streaming services because each feel that the other is killing their business. The worst hit in all this tussle and other issues have been the artists, the fuel that runs the industry.
So how is it expected to bring about a change? Peer to Peer network of Blockchain will allow transfer of data and anything valuable without the need of a third party. Inter connected network will not allow any data change without verification by others on the network.
It is expected that artists will be able to publish their music with unique codes and time stamp. This will ensure that originality of the song is maintained. It will kill the problem of piracy, modification and illegal distribution.
Every song will have its information encrypted which will be verified by various sources on the network. So, next time someone pays to listen to a song, the rightful people will get paid for it and not the middle men. There will be a direct interaction between the artists and consumers. The smart contracts will come into play and the artists will be paid according to the usage.
We don’t know yet how much time would it take to implement Blockchain technology in industries other than bank and finance. But, for now it seems that the times ahead will be safe, secure and more transparent!