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Hundreds of millions of dollars are being poured into various blockchain investments around the world. Major companies such as IBM, JP Morgan, Spotify, and Eastman Kodak are already exploring various blockchain applications. So are governments.
If you are old enough, it is very reminiscent of the dot-com boom we experienced back in the 90s, with seemingly impossible promises of a more connected world.
Today, some critics will tell you that blockchain is just a fad, or that much of what it’s postulated to do can be achieved even without it. Again, all these opinions make it feel like the 90s all over again—when most people warned that the whole internet bubble would soon come to an end.
Yet, for as long as you had an internet business idea, there was always someone willing to pour in huge sums of money with big expectations.
Most of the early internet businesses failed, but also major players like Google, Amazon, and Facebook were launched. At the time, no one knew that Google would grow to destroy Yahoo and Alta Vista, or that Facebook would make Friendster pale in comparison.
The point is, no one truly knows what applications of blockchain will be like in the future. If the past has taught us anything, however, it’s that technology must evolve to pave the way for new solutions across industries.
Experts are aware that they can’t prophesy how the future blockchain-based IoT or identification system will look like and that the technology is simply too young. Nevertheless, here is what we could expect to see in the near future.
DLT-Based Government Systems
The advantages of distributed ledger technology (DLT) are undeniable. Already, Dubai has announced its intention to incorporate DLT-based digital structures in all government systems by 2020. The transition from systems that depend on paper to digital systems was initiated by computers and embraced by the internet, but trust, immutability, and transparency will be established through DLT. It’s here to stay.
Blockchain IDs for All
Today’s identity systems remain highly inefficient, plagued by insecurity, forgery, and a lack of interoperability. Blockchain-based identity systems are going to provide a single source of verification.
The data stored could include government records (such as birth dates), reputation and trust scores, certificates of attestation, tax records, healthcare records, and employment history.
Globally Distributed Data Models
In the coming years, data is going to have to be widely distributed, especially for the success of other technologies such as the Internet of Things.
Each one of the many blockchains we expect to have in the future is going to have to standardize interoperability. Collaboration through an open standard is inevitable if consumers are to truly benefit from this tech.
Transparency Across Industries
Today’s consumers are becoming increasingly empowered, and blockchain’s structure is designed to enhance that power. Most blockchains are going to have to be public and to ensure complete privacy and control of data by the users. Also, a single public DLT makes it easy to pinpoint hacking attempts.
These are but a few predictions of the future of blockchain. You can find out more by checking out the infographic below which covers everything essential about the technology—from applications that are already in use to numerical predictions sourced from multiple experts.