Technology is always evolving. In the last few decades technology has evolved dramatically and will continue evolving. In a relatively short time, people moved from sending simple messages using pigeons to using telegraphic means. Countless technological breakthroughs have allowed humans to do things that were not possible in the past. So far, the journey has been very sensational to say the least. By the looks of it, the journey is only going to get better and bigger from this point on. We believe that the next large technological revolution will be in the form of Blockchain Technology.
Where it all began
If you are familiar with Blockchain technology or worked with it in the past, chances are the name Satoshi Nakamoto came up before. This is the name of the entity that published the first detailed concept of the blockchain we know today back in 2008. It considered an entity because the mastermind behind it remains anonymous until today. Experts believe that it indeed is a group of people rather than an individual who came up with the design.
Some people believe that this supposed anonymity of the creator is an analogy to show how secure the blockchain can be. This fact might be true but for now it's pure speculation.
Nakamato created a perfectly secure blockchain design that is still used today. The blockchain consists of blocks containing information about transactions. Each block contains a hash, the senders address, the address the transaction is heading to and the hash of the previous block.
The first block on a blockchain is called the genesis block and does not contain any hash for the previous block. Each blocks hash is calculated using the blocks data. If any of the data is changed then the blocks hash will change. This means that every the hash for every block placed after a changed block needs to be recalculated. This can be done on a single powerful computer but to counter this Nakamoto made the blockchain peer to peer. This means that every computer on the blockchain has to recalculate the hash for every block. This makes the blockchain very secure and almost impossible to control.
After making all these adjustments, Nakamoto used the new and refined system as the base to develop a gem. That gen is the popular cryptocurrency that everyone and his grandpa knows about, Bitcoin. Bitcoins concept was simple, a robust currency that is not easy to control and is transparent.
The Future of Bitcoin
Bitcoin has grown significantly in the last 5 years. The Bitcoin blockchain was only 20GB back in 2014. Today bitcoins blockchain has grown more than 1000% to more than 260GB. This growth has been nothing but fascinating.
Jesse Lund, vice president of the blockchain and digital currencies department at IBM made a statement on bitcoin. He intimated his believes that bitcoin will be valued as high as $1 Million by the end of 2019. John McAfee had a few things to day about Lund's statement. McAfee stated that he agrees with Lund's price target but he thinks the timing is wrong. He claims that Satoshis coin would amount to that value by December 2020.
On topic of digital currencies, it would be unwise not to talk about Ethereum. A word that sounds like something from a periodic table is actually quite different. Ethereum is the crypto of choice, after bitcoin in relation to market capitalization.
One of the outstanding feature about Ethereum is that it's considered to be a platform coin. This means that it can facilitate the running and deployment of other blockchain applications. In addition to this attribute, Ethereum is extremely robust and popular.
Although Ethereum looks promising, it still hit a few big bumps on its road to success. It's once steady increase has met an end after it plummeted multiple times in the last couple of years. Being very similar to bitcoin means that the coin is subject to highs and lows. By the mere fact that is is more than just a cryptocurrency makes it very challenging to predict its gross value.
There is a lot of buss surrounding the future of Ethereum. Some experts believe that the currency is worthless and that is accomplished nothing. Others claim that the currency is a gold mine to come. Some people believe that the value per coin might go up to $100,000.
Expanding the Blockchain to the Banking sector
Countless concern surrounding the effectiveness and efficiency of traditional banking have been voiced. In most modern economies the banking sector has been overrun by a throne of monopolies. The banking problem lies in the service delivery.
When a market is saturated by a select few the focus of the companies shifts. From placing the customer needs and satisfaction ahead, companies start to focus on their profits alone. This means that companies might not necessarily be in line with the customers needs.
This monopoly started a trend of its own. The popularity of challenger banks erupted. Start-up banks that do not go by the traditional way of banking started appearing.
Thus the eruption of challenger banks to counter this situation. Their niche focuses on areas neglected by big banks, and are very customer oriented.
One founder of one such challenger bank made a comment. This pioneer has had a lot of experience working at major banks for over 30 years. She spoke out about the need for this revolution and mentioned how it was easier to start a bank. With her experience it was easier to start a bank rather than fix the old one.
The rise of challenger banks gives the banking industry to change tracks and start clean. In the age of cryptocurrencies, banks like that are the perfect pedestal to popularizing the blockchain. Popularizing the blockchain means it will be more common in day to day applications.
Most of these banks tend to offer cryptocurrency as an alternative payment currency.
Dimitry Lazarichev is one of Wirex's founder, a challenger bank that work with crypto. In an interview he revealed some important information about global transactions. He mentioned that cryptocurrency is more efficient and cheaper than conventional wire transfers. Most oh his clients go with that option.
The world is evolving quickly, new things are demanded and technology adapts. From self-driving cars to self-flying drones, the tech scene is about to change even more. The issue of trust is not a small one and blockchain is one way to tackle it.
All large industries but banks are consistently undergoing some sort of metamorphosis. The introduction of digital banking is one of the largest banking revolutions. It's time to revolutionize the currency itself.
Blockchain Technology in Government systems
Fortunately, we are living in the days when governments are embracing technology. Governments around the globe started implementing the blockchain in different applications. With it, come many seamless perks like the guarantee of tamper-free data storage. Here are a few examples.
To stop the sales of fake pharmaceuticals, authorities across the works teamed up. They started monitoring pharmaceutical imports to guarantee the quality and credibility. Blockchain technology was used in order to prevent the sale of fake medication.
The Brazilian government was also seen using blockchain technology. With the help of the blockchain and smart contracts they made sure corruption didn't get to funds. The system made sure that donations from organizations and the government reached the correct people.
Countries such as Venezuela and Singapore are working on blockchain projects too. Both countries are looking to revolutionize their national currency using the blockchain. Incorporating a currency into the blockchain will make exchanging currency easy. This will be achieved by making transactions fast and seamless.
Venezuela is ahead of most players in the list. This is because it is the first, and so far the only country to issue a digital currency by a federal government. The currency is called Petro.
The Downside of Crypto
Cryptocurrencies are a secure and reliable way to manage money. By it would not be wise to ignore the few issues that come with cryptocurrencies. For a long time, cryptocurrency has enabled criminal activities to go under the radar. The sales of illegal drugs and weapons have only been able to happen with crypto.
The reason that crypto is used by so many criminals it its anonymous nature. The ability to pay without any trace has attributed to much of its popularity on such platforms. In reality, most cryptocurrencies that are not privacy based have traceable transactions. Algorithms hosted by authorities can identify transactions linked to the dark-net.