In March of this year, Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, unseated Bill Gates for the position of richest man in the world. The feat was the result of a massive $40 billion jump in net worth – the largest ever, according to Forbes.
With Bezos, Zuckerberg, and others reaching the uppermost echelon of wealth, it’s easy to forget the days when the dot.com bubble burst and companies like Amazon were the pariahs of the stock market. The move from the bottom to the top reflects both the fickle public sentiment of investors, and the underlying fundamental value that made Amazon what it is today.
In a similar vein perhaps, the Bitcoin bubble has officially burst. Dropping nearly 80% from its highs at the end of 2017, the first and greatest cryptocurrency has come on tough times. We had a chance to interview Thomas Carter of DealBox, take a look at his key points as it relates to blockchain:
Fundamentals are key
Nevertheless, the underlying fundamental value that made Bitcoin boom and bust may someday create the next Jeff Bezos. Blockchain technology, the foundation that Bitcoin is built on, has already received substantial accolades in the press.
As a distributed ledger (think of a secure database shared over thousands of different computers), blockchain technology provides unique ways to solve problems that are facing various industries, from banking to logistics. In recent developments, both Facebook and Amazon Web Services are considering blockchain solutions. But perhaps nowhere is the potential for change more clear than in the communications industry.
The very nature of blockchain – secure, distributed information made accessible through private keys – provides a solution to the common speed/security problems facing communications. Below are four ways that blockchain technology will disrupt the way consumers and businesses think about and use communications systems going forward.
One of the first issues with all technology, and particularly with communications, is security. Recent developments in the cybersecurity industry have made this a ubiquitous issue for consumers and corporations alike.
However, blockchain technology, like that offered by SOMA, provides an elegant solution to this apparently insurmountable problem. By decentralizing data, the technology provides a way for only intended users to access any set of data. And new messaging systems have begun to capitalize on this powerful concept.
By allowing resource and service providers around the world to join the network transparently via blockchain technology, the company is able to build in much wider coverage and higher-quality services at lower prices than any single telecom operator can achieve in the upcoming 5G era. The blockchain-powered sharing economy can decentralize the physical footprint of the network, freeing the company from passing on costly overhead to its users.
Additionally, the security offered by blockchain technology is substantially more robust, and the blockchain startup is looking to build on that foundation.
Finally, through a decentralized cloud communication network, blockchain technology is able to create seamless integrations between applications. This greatly reduces the complexity of communication.
While communications providers and consumers are seeking security and speed, they are also pursuing cost effectiveness. Already a vastly cheaper option that customary telephony, Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, has a genuine future as a decentralized network system.
Current VoIP solutions require a centralized ‘landing point’ which routes the calling party’s signal to a receiving number. Generally, a centralized system requires fees for making that connection (think of a traditional phone operator), even if the system is digitized.
However, blockchain technology removes that centralized access point and replaces it with a distributed network that is shared by all the users on the network. This means that there is never a routing cost, as all routes are already established by the distributed ledger.
Finally, blockchain technology is creating a helpful solution for content delivery networks (or CDNs). Since the internet is really just an interconnected group of servers, for data to travel globally, it must pass through CDNs.
These provide a critical service for information transfer, but also represent an intrinsic cost for data transfer, as well as a weak point of security risk.
Blockchain technology provides a methodology for optimizing unused bandwidth from servers all over the world and linking them together into a complex nest of servers able to move data seamlessly throughout the world. And, because the data is all distributed and can only be accessed via private keys, such system provides maximal security for users.
Because blockchain technology decentralizes those points of bandwidth, any single server crash or service interruption can be almost instantly healed by rerouting through the many thousands of other nodes, or points on the network. Therefore, even from a reliability perspective, blockchain is solving CDN related issues.
As these examples show, the underlying fundamentals of blockchain technology promise to create a fast, simple and secure way of communicating. Because the distributed information is both secure and accessible, the technology provides a unique solution for bringing speed and security together.
The bubble/bust cycle of technology is nothing new. Because new technological innovations are exciting, investments flow in and move a market like a traditional bubble. However, with blockchain, like it’s dot.com predecessor, it seems the technology is here to stay.
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