While opinions are divided on cryptocurrencies with their proponents and critics being equally passionate about both ends of the spectrum, there is one thing that they agree upon, the usage of blockchain technology.
Even though the central concept of blockchain technology was introduced years before Bitcoin came into the picture in 2008, the cryptocurrency did present blockchain’s utility in a never seen before capacity. While most people were either in awe or dismissal of the concept of a digital currency, some of them saw the bigger picture not with cryptocurrencies in mind, but with the technology that the digital currency was created with.
One such name that comes to mind is IBM, which, after years of research and work on the blockchain front, now has a dedicated business division that focuses explicitly on deploying blockchain solutions for enterprises all over the world. Very recently, IBM partnered with Maersk to implement a worldwide blockchain network for shipping companies, a system that could change shipping procedures as we now know it.
It has also worked with other corporations and non-profit organizations and has been making headlines over the past few years.
Other big names in the blockchain front include Oracle and Microsoft, which also provide blockchain as a service to global enterprises. However, the list does not end there, and the list of great minds working in the blockchain sector is only growing each day.
Due to the security, transparency, and ease-of-access that it provides over a network, blockchain technology, and its associated functions are now deemed by various parts of the technological industry as a world-changing phenomenon, just like the internet in the late 90s.
So businesses are adopting it… what’s next?
With the blockchain technology is now being welcomed by these corporations, it is a no-brainer that it will only make further progress as time passes by.
However, that poses another question on how businesses can further benefit from this technology and create an ecosystem that does not only allow them to interact with their customers with ease but also makes the lives of non-technological users easier as well.
With this thought, several concepts keep surfacing every day, with some of them being as sound and logical as to have the potential to get adopted soon, while some of them, only sound nice on paper but fall flat on execution.
However, innovation is one of the core aspects of the cryptocurrency and blockchain community, which is why considering these concepts and learning more about them is only beneficial in the long run.
The idea of tokens for each business
One such concept that has been making the rounds through the community is the adaptation of native tokens by established businesses – that are not just created by startups to run initial coin offerings (ICOs) but which could act as transaction ready digital currency within the company’s platform.
The rough concept for this idea states that any enterprise whether it offers cellphones, music, video content, or groceries, can have their native tokens which are able to be exchanged with fiat.
The idea presented with this also proposes that the digital currency provides privileges such as discounts or faster delivery times to these companies’ customers among several other possible benefits, and is created in such a manner that it can be traded for the same value in fiat in case the customer decides not to want to have the “tokens” with the same corporation anymore.
Pros: It could create a mutually beneficial and never-seen-before ecosystem for both businesses and customers.
Cons: It will pose restrictions with regulation and anti-money laundering with governments, which could be a hindrance in its execution.
Contribution through public blockchains
Most of the blockchain technologies being developed by the corporations are permissioned blockchains, which means that not everyone can access all data on the ledger or write to the ledger to create new blocks.
However, the concept related to this aspect suggests changing that.
The idea is to create “public blockchains,” which will provide these organizations with the ability to interact with their users in a never seen before capacity.
Pros: Everything will be available to users that can contribute to the platform with their ideas within the system’s functionalities. Platforms such as Buzzfeed might be very interested in this kind of a blockchain so that it could have more and more people contribute with content on the platform and also earn benefits as they participate.
Cons: While the concept of interaction could remind people of Twitter, a social media platform that now allows anyone to connect with people that they never imagined they could ever share their thoughts with; the idea of allowing the public to access data on a blockchain reminiscent of Bitcoin, which in its definition is “censor-proof”, seems far-fetched for most product-based businesses.
For instance, any company offering its products or financial information will not be comfortable to allow everyone access to everything that is available on its blockchain platform, including but not limited to financial data.
These ideas are creative concepts which might have the potential for adaptability one day. However, since the blockchain technology is still evolving, it is too soon for concepts of such capacity to come to fruition.
That being said, the world of blockchain has opened doors to a new world of possibilities and we, for one, cannot wait to hear the next set of ideas that pick up traction within the community.