Beyond Cryptos: What Are the Other Applications for Blockchain?

Blockchain technology is changing the world as we know it – faster than you think.

Corporations, governments, you name it are rapidly adopting the technology. It’s even impacting the food you eat.

For example, IBM just launched its blockchain-based ledger that will track food supply chains. Known as IBM’s Food Trust Ledger, it will allow food retailers, suppliers and growers to see the supply chain in real-time. It’ll enhance transparency and create a way to trace food origin and safety.

Even Ticketmaster is using the technology.

Ticketmaster acquired Upgraded, a blockchain technology company that services the live event industry. Reportedly, Upgraded can convert traditional tickets into secure interactive digital assets. It’ll help provide protection and peace-of-mind for the customer.

Blockchain is Changing the World

If you think of a traditional database like a spreadsheet, the blockchain distributes it so that the spreadsheet runs on millions of computers.

It also uses state of the art cryptography. Therefore, once a user adds the information, it is virtually impossible to extract again without the original passcode.

The technology has only just begun to transform industries, though.

Countless industries can become more efficient and effective when they implement this technology. This is why the demand for blockchain engineers is skyrocketing. Everyone wants to get a slice of the action and there is a shortage of talent to do so.

In the banking sector for example, the technology allows for quicker transactions, lower costs and enhanced transparency. No longer will you have to wait countless working days for a transfer to process or suffer through exorbitant charges for sending money across borders.

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Blockchain Technology and the Health Sector

Data breaches are nightmares. But blockchain may offer a solution.

The financial aftermath can cost a company an average of $3.86 million, a 6% jump year over year. A 2018 Cost of Data Breach study found the average cost of a lost record is $148.  That’s a 4.8% year over year increase. Globally, U.S. companies experience the highest average cost per data breach at $7.9 million.

Among all of the companies hit, healthcare takes quite a beating. In fact, data breaches can cost $408 per stolen record in the industry.

At the moment, the average cost per lost or stolen record for healthcare organizations is $408, compared to $148 within other industries. While data breaches are only getting worse, the solution may be blockchain technology.

Patient records could be more secure -- That’s because the technology stores data in blocks that can’t be altered or accessed without a key code. 

Drug companies can keep track of supply chain -- At all times, pharmaceutical companies must track every movement of drug delivery. That includes the manufacturing to end points in the chain. When blockchain is used, companies may have a full record of transport of drugs. That leaves little opportunity for theft at any point of transfer.

Blockchain Technology and Agriculture

The “Big 4” of agricultural companies have plans to use blockchain to help advance the global grain trade, including Archer Daniels Midland Company, Bunge, Cargill, and Louis Dreyfus. All are looking to digitize international agricultural shipping transactions “for the benefit of the entire industry.”

Driven by opportunities to increase transparency and efficiency for customers, global agribusinesses are turning to emerging digital technologies – including blockchain and artificial intelligence options – to reduce resource- and time-intensive processes associated with the global agricultural commodity value chain, says the latest press release. 

The initial goal is to replace a system that relies on paper contracts with an automated electronic system. Longer term, each is looking to improve upon quality and reliability of documents and data.  In addition, they want great visibility across supply-chain movements, leading to lower costs. Also, they want increased efficiency and transparency that would allow to better serve customers and consumers.

In short when it comes to blockchain, it’s not just cryptocurrency you should be aware of.

The technology is quickly making its presence known just about everywhere. In fact, it’ll slowly change the world as you know it.

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