Blockchain technology is now being spoken about as a technological breakthrough like Artificial Intelligence, IoT, and VR. It is expected to introduce massive changes in the way industries work, grow, develop and beyond all that, innovate. Blockchain technology, characterized by its decentralized network is a distributed an secure network that can facilitate data transmission and storage. Furthermore, it enables the growth of technologies like IoT and Machine Learning. A Deloitte report talks about how broader adoption and integration of the blockchain technology can facilitate seamless and faster innovation across industries.
Leveraging Blockchain in the path to innovation
The blockchain ledger system enables easy flow of digital assets in a secure manner thus adding value to various industrial chains and technological applications. The promise of permanent and tamper-proof data records wins the technology some brownie points from industries that are keen on efficient data storage systems. Hence, a sustainable ecosystem for innovative experimentation, research and development have been created due to the introduction of the blockchain technology across industries. While industries have already started implementing blockchain for record-storage and basic transactions, there is a scope of much larger applications of the technology in the real world.
The blockchain has started garnering attention for its scope of usage in industries like logistics and transportation. The Rotterdam port in Europe has set up a lab to study how blockchain can be applied to the energy and logistics sector. The team at Block lab has explored the use of the technology in stock financing in the port logistics sector, putting structure to large-scale networks, supply chains and markets among other subjects. Various other sectors like social media and manufacturing are also leveraging learnings from blockchain technology to make rapid advancements.
The key to more effective and informed innovation, however, is to standardize technology and integrate multiple blockchains within a value chain. The last few months have hyped blockchain to a level where it may stagnate if not dealt with smartly. Organizations should connect multiple blockchains for a seamless transaction of digital assets and hence faster operations.
How can blockchain lead to better innovations?
- Design a use case with a clear path to commercialization
As with any other project, PoCs (proof of concepts) that have a clear plan designed for wide-scale application and use, resonate better with the audience and the market. Hence, irrespective of the industry, it is necessary that blockchain is used to create additional revenue or cost savings opportunities for any use case. This would not only convince the market that blockchain is a lucrative option but will also set the stage for better project goals and clear objectives. This will then require clearly defined timelines and a skilled resource-set for the implementation of the project.
It is expected that once blockchain is leveraged for mass-adoption applications, these projects and innovations are going to be enterprise-centric. This will thus, pave way for innovation and healthy competition in the industry. That will lead to not only better products and services in the industry but also more licenses, patents, and whitepapers on innovative technologies being promoted within a sector.
- Standardize technology, business processes, and talent skillsets
Since the decentralized ledger technology is growing in scope and scale, standardized technologies, platforms, and skillsets become even more necessary by the passing day. If all technological infrastructure and skillsets of people involved are standardized and improved continuously, it will ensure that enterprises can share blockchain solutions seamlessly and can collaborate on the design, development, and deployment of applications. This would also ensure that the personnel in an organization can develop deep knowledge in a few prominent blockchain protocols instead of developing basic know-how in multiple protocols or platforms. This would help enterprises specialize in domains and create competitive solutions in the same.
Corporate giants like JP Morgan are already developing and launching ledger systems for their respective industries. This would provide industries with platforms to develop ideas and use the system to create the state of art technological applications for use across enterprises.
- Integrate multiple blockchains into one big network
Creating enterprise partnerships across and within blockchain-enabled enterprises promises greater monetary value and boost to the blockchain-based ROI. Furthermore, interoperability within the blockchain ecosystem will ensure we can customize and enhance blockchain solutions faster and more effectively. This will also make organizations agile in terms of technological infrastructure and skill set. Doing so would not only create a competitive environment for innovation, research and development but also define common processes and standards for R&D in the industry.
However, it is important to note that merging blockchains has a lot of constraints. It is only possible to do so once all historical data from one blockchain has been transferred onto the other blockchain. Once a network of blockchains is created, the convergence of protocols is set to accelerate. Moreover, with the advent of new protocols that support inter-technology, such ecosystems will be able to store and record data without any glitches, leaving them with more time to focus on industry-specific developments.
The blockchain is set to revolutionize the trend of research, development, and innovation across all industries. However, we will have to keep devising new methods to use the technology before it becomes flaccid in the industrial and technological scenario.