Blockchain technology has definitely come to stay, and the best part is that its applications are not limited to cryptocurrencies alone. This underlying technology of cryptocurrencies has a lot of interesting applications even in our daily lives.
Blockchain technology has revolutionized the modus operandi of a number of industries and new use cases arise everyday, which are currently being explored.
In this article, you’ll learn about top ten applications of blockchain beyond cryptocurrency.
Top Ten Applications of Blockchain Technology:
- Cross-border Payments
- Decentralized Finance
- Smart Contracts
- Non-fungible Tokens (NFTs)
- Database Management
- Supply Chain/Shipping
Before the advent of blockchain technology, making payments across borders was quite hectic. The funds would take days to reflect, and the cost of traditional money transfer services was quite high.
This has now been transformed by blockchain technology: payments are faster, cheaper and transaction fees are lower. Blockchain payments are now also being increasingly adopted as means of payments in some countries.
With a smartphone and an internet connection, anyone can access financial services with blockchain technology.
The bureaucracy and stress of traditional banking have been overcome. Anyone can make investments, access or give loans, earn full interests, and mortgages without the banks or governing bodies securely.
Smart contracts have been in existence since the 90’s, but have been given a makeover by blockchain technology. Smart contracts are different from regular contracts because they are automatically executed when contract terms are met.
The Ethereum smart contract protocol, the first to be built on the blockchain, is the most widely used smart contract. Applications and software ranging from browsers and improved payment systems to storage systems, cloud storage, and music catalogues have been built on this blockchain.
Apart from the benefits they offer individually, they’ve also provided developers with a safe way to earn without the interference of financial institutions.
The idea of buying and selling digital pieces of items has completely been transformed through blockchain technology.
While NFTs are much more than random abstract art, the whole processes of minting and transfer of ownership of NFTs are done completely on a blockchain. Blockchain makes it safe and easy to buy, sell and earn royalties on NFT projects.
Play to earn games has been a huge development, heralded by blockchain technology. Players are given unique addresses to play games on the blockchain, earn rewards from winning games, and also purchase items in the decentralized marketplace, without manipulation from gaming industries.
Blockchain is useful in insurance to keep insurance records, and provide fair and fast verification of insurance claims. There is also decentralized finance insurance, to protect against crypto wallet theft and losses made due to the high cryptocurrency volatility.
While a usual database management system has huge plusses, it can still be subject to manipulation, a crash can affect all the records, it could be mistakenly deleted, an unauthorized party might gain access to it and all other disadvantages associated with centralized data keeping.
A blockchain is practically a database, since it stores records, but has the advantage of being decentralized, transparent and secure. The records on it are also permanent and cannot be changed to avoid sinister activity or data manipulation.
So if you have any sensitive data to store that you don’t want hacked or manipulated, a blockchain-based database is your best bet.
The application of blockchain in healthcare is an extension of its application in database management systems.
Blockchain-based systems manage patient data and prevent errors. They also provide safe passage of this information between hospitals, laboratories, as well as privacy, since medical information is quite sensitive.
There is also a seamless conjunction of medical insurance in blockchain technology used for healthcare.
With blockchain, voting systems have become more transparent preventing vote fraud. Since data cannot be duplicated on a blockchain, it prevents double voting and manipulation. Its decentralized nature also makes the voting system accessible to authorized parties and the public depending on its settings.
Using blockchain based shipping networks improves communication between traders, tracks good progress and improves trust. This is because payment is made on the blockchain, and will only be possible when contract agreements are met. This improves trust and protects both the buyer and seller.