The Ubcoin Team prepared a thorough article for you on how the companies use blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Among cases studied: Brisbane Airport, Microsoft Store, KODAK, The Royal Bank of Canada and even the United Nations.
Daily news feeds are full of news about blockchain technology and cryptocurrency. People are increasingly using cryptocurrencies, as of January 2018, there were over 1350 digital currencies, and people’s knowledge on blockchain technology is expanding. Large players such as corporations, and international organizations are ever more interested in decentralized solutions. Their interest is quite logical, as new technologies such as blockchain have proven viability, and great potential. Nevertheless blockchain technology has pros and cons. For example, on the one hand, companies can lead these innovations and adapt them to their businesses so it may bring profit. On the other hand, these innovations can change the structure of the market and weaken the positions of leading players if they won’t use them.
So, how do companies use decentralized solutions? According to this criterion, they can be divided into four groups:
- They do not change their line of business, but accept payments in new forms (cryptocurrencies);
- They improve their activities and functions through decentralized solutions using blockchain;
- They start or change their lines of business under the influence of the crypto trend;
- They criticize decentralized solutions and do not implement them.
The last group listed in the criterion is the least interesting and they do not offer anything progressive regarding blockchain technology. This group criticizes blockchain because its initial implementation has a high cost as the production of blockchain currency may require a large amount of electrical power. However, the first three groups of companies deserve attention. Specifically, the the methods in which they implement decentralized innovations into their businesses.
The first way of implementation is through new forms of payment. A company serves clients exactly as before and does not change the line of its business. Nevertheless, the company follows the cryptotrend and gives their clients the opportunity to pay for services or goods using cryptocurrency. For example, LOT Polish Airlines, airBaltic, Peach Aviation and TAR Airlines have followed this form of decentralized implementation by enabling their customers the ability to purchase tickets for bitcoins.
Another example is Brisbane Airport. Travellers will soon be able to use cryptocurrency payment system, including Bitcoin, Dash, Ethereum and other digital currencies, to shop at stores across both terminals of airport. A similar path was chosen by other companies such as, the Microsoft Store which now accepts Bitcoin currency as payment. Also the biggest hotel booking service in South Korea, Yeogi Eottae, allows customers to pay with cryptocurrencies.
The next way of implementing decentralized technologies is to introduce the tech into the line of business itself. Many large companies are considering the possibility of using of blockchain to store and protect information. For example, KODAK has developed its own blockchain-platform (KODAKOne) to store data on intellectual property rights for photographs. Moreover, the company has developed its own cryptocurrency (KODAKCoin) to pay for the use of photographs. Furthermore, The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) is going to use blockchain to store data on bidders and transactions as well. In 2015, the US stock exchange NASDAQ implemented blockchain technology, but its blockchain-platform is still in the beta phase. While there exists some scepticism regarding the motivation of these companies to use blockchain (reminiscent of 1990’s where everyone adding “dotcom” moniker earned a higher premium on their shares), efforts to embrace blockchain do deserve plaudits if done for the reasons of business, not creating empty hype.
Large players are actively using distributed ledger technology in other areas too. Such corporate giants as IBM, Walmart, Nestle, and Anheuser-Busch use blockchain to manage supplies, track goods and reduce transaction costs. Huawei is developing a system for verifying intellectual property rights based on blockchain, and American Express is actively exploring the possibility of using a distributed ledger to speed up the process of transactions.
International organizations are not lagging behind corporations as they also have been experimenting the use of decentralized technologies in their activities. The United Nations wants to use blockchain to control carbon dioxide emissions through the process of implementing the terms of the Paris Agreement into a blockchain scheme. The organization also wants to use the distributed ledger to store identity data. Thus, possibly helping to effectively track and prevent the slave trade. Even according to the International Monetary Fund, international regulation of cryptocurrencies may be based on the blockchain technology.
A separate subgroup of companies consist of banks and financial institutions. Many of them are skeptical of cryptocurrencies and decentralized technologies, because they are an alternative to the world of traditional finances. Banks, in turn, are representatives of these regulated centralized systems, therefore they are afraid of contingent regulatory penalties and the competition. Their actions can create obstacles for the growth of the cryptoindustry and banks most likely will have to go through many steps before taking on cryptocurrencies. However, today there are some exceptions that do not fear to introduce decentralized solutions into their activities. Royal Bank of Canada wants to use the blockchain to automatically assess the credit ratings of borrowers. The system based on customer data sets credit rating, determines the appropriate type of loan and generates a unique smart contract. Swiss banks represent those institutions that also see new opportunities in distributed ledger, the online bank Swissquote has a service for trading bitcoins. Additionally, Falcon Private Bankaccepts Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash and offers asset management services for bitcoins.
The last group in the classification is those companies that decided to start or change their lines of business under the influence of the cryptotrade. Some companies present innovative products. For example, a crypto-heater produced by Qarnot, which mines cryptocurrency while concurrently heating the home, or Safe-T mini — a physical cryptocurrency wallet produced by Archos. Some companies are using the blockchain buzz to make easy and quick money. On-line Plc and The Long Island Ice Tea have only changed their names to On-line Blockchain Plc and Long Blockchain Corporation and the price of their shares have increased dramatically. Such actions can hardly be called serious innovations.
Ultimately, decentralized solutions are a step towards the future. Blockchain technology is already being used to solve a variety of operational tasks, and cryptocurrencies are becoming a regular means of payment. As we see, acceptance of such innovations is a personal matter for each company. However, it is important to understand that technological progress does not stand still, therefore those players (primarily banks, payment systems and financial institutions) that avoid interaction with distributed ledger may eventually be replaced by those utilizing decentralized solutions.
Notably, Ubank is not a hesitant player in the blockchain paradigm. Ubank is actively introducing decentralized technologies in its line of business. That’s why Ubank is developing Ubcoin Market, powered by smart-contracts on Ethereum blockchain. The company wants to make an ideal peer-to-peer marketplace where you can easily buy and sell real goods for cryptomoney. Therefore, Ubcoin Market will become the decentralized solution for day-to-day buying and selling.
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