Blockchain was originally developed to make cryptocurrency viable in an environment of rapidly advancing technologies and complex security requirements. The technology soon became a hot trend thanks to the emergence and subsequent success of bitcoin, and proceeded to evolve beyond being just a framework for cryptocurrency exchanges.
As a matter of fact, blockchain’s fundamental principles themselves make the technology useful for businesses across a variety of industries. Though many of the proposed potential applications of blockchain are theoretical, many companies have succeeded in leveraging the technology to derive surprising outcomes different from coin exchanges.
Here are a few ways how businesses effectively harness blockchain technology.
When almost every kind of information – personal & professional, of a consumer are being exchanged online, there would obviously be security concerns. Accounts with personal data are increasing in social media channels, and most of said data are stored and secured on cloud. Even so, there’s still a looming threat of identity theft.
Someone with ill intentions need only put in a little effort to get access to personal data of an internet user. The data can then be used to cause irreparable damage. Considering the threat and associated risks, actions that require identity verification generally follow the practice of asking for physical evidence that can’t be instantaneously copied like credit/debit card or some certificates. But the processes involved can take a lot of time.
Businesses have now started to use blockchain to decentralize proof of identity ensuring that there is no single point of failure or weak links in the chain. Cyber-criminals won’t be able to take any action that compromises the data. A good example is Civic, a security company. They implemented a platform that uses biometric data to access blockchain-driven multi factor authentication. This way their users will find it easier to handle even the most secure actions without any complex login formalities or physical evidences.
Cloud storage improvements
Modern businesses generate tremendous amounts of data that also hide many insights that could help businesses improve themselves in terms of productivity and growth. With so much data involved, businesses started relying heavily on cloud technologies. Cloud servers can store all that data and keep them secure. The data can be accessed via any device or platform at any time with valid credentials.
However, cloud servers are still machines that are maintained by singular entities. If the security of the company that provides the cloud storage service is breached, the service itself is considered to be compromised and unsafe.
To avoid such a scenario, Storj – a startup founded in 2014, came forward with the goal of growing or expanding network cloud storage to a point where it won’t rely on governing bodies by using blockchain technology. Users will only need to pay flat fees for storing/downloading data, and can put up their own storage space as a repository to earn money. Traditional cloud storage services use CDNs (Content Delivery Networks) to cache files and hasten delivery. Blockchain-based cloud storage can make things even faster and better.
Clean-up of gem trading industries
The gem trading industry generally has always been questioned for its unethical practices and lack of transparency. Though the buyers and sellers are continents apart, there’s massive amounts of money involved in the industry which occasionally leads to controversies that demand transparency.
Highly unethical practices in the gems trading industry including mistreatment and exploitation of miners, trading of fake gemstones, exaggerated specifications, purity ratings etc. all lack transparency. All these issues can be solved by a blockchain ledger – every transaction becomes accessible to anyone who wants to take a look, which in turn makes it very difficult for traders to get away with their illegal and unethical practices.
The challenge lies in making the use of such a blockchain system implicitly mandatory in the industry. Everledger, a Fintech startup, is currently pursuing this goal by providing a blockchain system that tracks buying and selling of diamonds. They are working on further expanding the technology to cover the rising percentage of diamond trade.
Green energy system
This is probably one of the most unique ways how blockchain is being harnessed. Blockchain grants a lot of benefits, but is resource-intensive. Proof-of-work calculations demand great processing power which deters many businesses from using blockchain.
Now bring solar power into the scene. Though it has never actually gone mainstream, solar power is still the key to renewable energy. Solar panels are just too expensive to install and maintain, and don’t always deliver expected power output efficiently. But, the technology is advancing.
By connecting power meters to blockchain nodes, people with solar panels can sell electricity they don’t use or buy electricity when they need it without the involvement of energy companies. There won’t be confusion regarding reward rates and systems as the entire thing will be community-driven. Consensus algorithms can verify and validate transactions. Solar Bankers, an energy company, is working towards making off-grid, reliable green energy systems.
Provide processing power???
Blockchain can provide processing power?
Golem – an open source, decentralized supercomputer is how. The supercomputer doesn’t have any centralized processing, and can be accessed by anyone. It derives power from blockchain mining, and allows its customers to rent its immense aggregated power. Companies and research firms that require great amounts of processing power to calculate complicated things, like for instance weather patterns, no longer need to invest in on-premises computing systems. Power that would’ve gone to waste is thus made highly productive.
Blockchain has already gone mainstream when it comes to cryptocurrencies. Considering the fact that many eCommerce organizations are willing to add bitcoin support and many others have already started experimenting with blockchain for enhancing cyber-security, it’s safe to say that the technology is here to stay for a long time.
Cryptocurrencies are the center of attention at the moment. But meaningful blockchain solutions like the ones mentioned above will soon make blockchain something that future generations will look at with awe.
If you want to learn what new-gen technologies can do for your business, AoT technologies is where you will find answers. Drop us a message now.