The Blockchain is the technology behind the digital asset, Bitcoin. The Blockchain decentralized network is a public ledger that allows immutable digital transactions to be distributed but not copied. The Blockchain was invented to support Bitcoin and has been operational since the first transaction between Satoshi Nakamoto and Hal Finney on 12 January 2009 in block 170. It is an ingenious invention that is evolving as uses, not only for FinTech, are being innovated by the tech community. Blockchain technology is revolutionary and soon consumers will be transacting on the blockchain without knowledge thereof.
According to the World Economic Forum, This is the technology that could help us make globalization work for everyone – “The challenge that lies ahead is how to make globalization work for everyone, not just privileged few. The blockchain, a decentralized ledger that verifies and permanently records transactions, may help us achieve this goal. In fact, the democratizing potential of this technology could be key to ushering in a new era of globalism.”
One of the most important aspects of implementing a Blockchain solution is that parties across the board need to be able to communicate with each other vs developing their own little island. Think of the internet and when it first started. Many large enterprises created their own form of internet called the “intranet”. Even though private intranets are still operational, enterprises communicate with others via the public internet. Similarly with the Blockchain – there is much development on private Blockchains and some stakeholders are proposing that Blockchains are alterable for internal purposes – Read this report on Accenture’s stance on the subject.
Collaboration amongst all stakeholders including Governments is vital to ensure the Blockchain delivers the efficiency expected. Indian Central Bank Research Institute Completed a Blockchain Test involving regulators, banks, financial insitutions and clearinghouses.
Even Sir Richard Branson is getting involved – an exclusive summit on Necker Island during 2016, men in flip flops plotted how to overturn the global economy. Here is one person’s account – My Wet and Wild Bitcoin Weekend On Richard Branson’s Island Refuge
There was considerable hype around the Blockchain during 2016, with the formation of various consortium’s. One of the largest consortium’s, R3, started on September 15, 2015 with 9 financial companies: Barclays, BBVA, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Royal Bank of Scotland, State Street, and UBS (Wikipedia). After a year, a few of these banks decided to move away from the consortium to focus on their business strategy, innovation and implementation of the Blockchain. Read more on why R3’s Bank exits are not bad for the Blockchain group. The R3 Consortium continues to grow in membership – Read more about R3 on their website.
Then there is the Hyperledger project which is an open source collaborative effort. It was created “To advance cross-industry blockchain technologies. It is a global collaboration including leaders in finance, banking, IoT, supply chain, manufacturing and technology.” Find out more here
Here are some innovative Blockchain projects:-
Read more about the New Blockchain Assets Working Group Wall Street ‘Works’ Blockchain
Here are the top 10 Mistakes in Enterprise Blockchain Projects – learn how not to make them!
2016 can go down in the history books at the Year of the Blockchain hype, collaboration and positioning for 2017. Take a look at the Bitcoin and Blockchain predictions for the year.
Need to learn the basics of how the Blockchain works? Watch this short explainer video for better understanding.
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