In the current market, every industry today is battling complacency, preparing for disruption, and being flexible enough to adapt quickly. Each new technology brings a revolution that forces innovation in businesses and disrupts whole industries. History is filled with examples, from the internet to mobile web and cloud computing to Blockchain. As a result of these technological advancements, companies and industries were either irrevocably altered or rendered obsolete.
Blockchain technology has experienced a rapid rise in popularity over the past decade. It first gained widespread attention with the emergence of Bitcoin in 2009. But the potential uses of blockchain technology extend far beyond just cryptocurrency. Its decentralized and secure nature, combined with transparent and immutable tracking of information, makes it well-suited for a wide range of applications.
From financial transactions and supply chain management to healthcare and voting, we will discuss seven industries that will most likelyundergo significant change due to blockchain technology.
The Rise of Blockchain
Once considered solely as the digital force behind bitcoins, Blockchain has become the prime disruptor in many industries due to its unique, immutable, and decentralized nature. As per the data from Statista, in 2021, the global blockchain market was worth $5.85 billion and is expected to reach $1,235.71 billion by 2030, a CAGR of 82.8%. With its promise to revolutionize data management, storage, and transaction, this digital ledger technology attracts leading industries to reduce fraud, improve security, and increase transparency across sectors.
Blockchain is here to stay, so industry specialists cannot stop but enquire: Will the Blockchain help reduce costs and time with numerous processes, making them more efficient and cost-effective? Are smart contracts powerful enough to automate digital exchanges and streamline existing business processes? Will the Blockchain eventually take over all centralized structures? Well, that's a little too early to say.
In short, blockchain technology has the potential to be a powerful force for transforming some of the biggest industries and creating a more secure and efficient digital world. Here are how the following industries are and will continue to change with this revolutionizing technology.
Blockchain's biggest selling point is its decentralized structure, which eliminates the need for an intermediary. This will revolutionize finance sector by streamlining and securing financial processes, such as cross-border payments, trade finance, and identity verification. Banks and other financial institutions are making grounds to use Blockchain to automate and secure the process of settling financial transactions, which can reduce the risk of fraud, cut down service costs, increase transparency, and speed up the process.
Use cases: Blockchain-based platforms like Ripple are facilitating international money transfers, while Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have gained popularity as a decentralized form of digital currency.
The Supply chain industry asks for a harmonized work of many complex processes. By using a distributed ledger to track the movement of inventory, shipments, and transportation, it is possible to increase transparency, efficiency, and traceability throughout the supply chain, whereby preventing fraud and errors. In addition, smart contracts can help automate certain aspects of the supply chain, such as the triggering of payments, shipment approvals, and so on, predetermined conditions to greatly improve the effectiveness and efficiency of this critical aspect of the business.
Use cases: IBM has developed a blockchain-based supply chain platform called IBM Food Trust, which major food retailers and suppliers use to track the movement of food products from farm to store.
There are several ways Blockchain can improve the quality and efficiency of health care. Using this distributed ledger to securely store and share medical records will help reduce errors and improve patient care by giving medical professionals access to a complete and up-to-date record of a patient's health history.
In pharmacy, Blockchain can be used to track the distribution of prescription drugs, ensuring that they are safe and effective and helping to prevent counterfeiting and other forms of fraud.
Use cases: the start-up company MedRec is using Blockchain to create a decentralized medical record system that allows patients to control their medical records and grants healthcare providers secure and authorized access.
Thanks to Blockchain, we can finally have integral and transparent voting processes. Blockchain will allow voters to cast their votes to an immutable record that cannot be breached and can only be accessed via a verified identity. This could help to increase public trust in the electoral process by improving the fairness and reliability of elections and reducing the risk of voter fraud.
Use Cases: West Virginia piloted a blockchain-based voting system for military personnel in the 2018 elections.
Blockchain safeguards intellectual property by tracking the ownership and authenticity of works of art. By creating a digital record of ownership on the Blockchain, it becomes much easier to verify the authenticity of a work of art and track its ownership over time. This can create a more efficient and fair system for distributing and monetizing art by enabling artists to directly sell their art to their buyers and tracking the use of their work.
Use Cases: Creative Blockchain Network (CBN), a platform that uses blockchain technology to help artists and creatives protect and manage their intellectual property rights.
Blockchain can support the energy sector by facilitating the buying and selling of renewable energy between individuals and small-scale producers. By using a blockchain-based platform, it is possible to create a decentralized energy market that allows for the buying and selling of excess renewable energy. This will help increase the adoption of renewable energy and make it easier for individuals and small-scale producers to participate in the energy market.
Use cases: The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has funded a project to develop a blockchain-based platform for trading renewable energy.
Intermediaries and third parties make up a huge chunk of the overall Real estate sector. By enabling property transactions directly between parties without an intermediary, Blockchain will greatly improve the efficiency and transparency of property transactions. In addition, the use of distributed ledger to track ownership and property transfers can greatly reduce the potential for errors or fraud.
Use cases: Propy is a platform that allows users to buy and sell property using blockchain technology.
In conclusion, blockchain technology is already transforming a wide range of industries, and its potential is still being explored. From finance and healthcare to supply chain management and real estate, Blockchain is enabling more secure, efficient, and transparent systems that have the potential to revolutionize the way we do business. As more organizations adopt Blockchain and develop new applications for it, we expect even more significant changes in the years ahead.