Benefits of Blockchain technology, same technology on which virtual currencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) are based, holds the potential for a lot of benefits in various sectors including shipping, retail, accounting, financial markets, and energy. The technology also holds potential for use in elections as well as in conducting financial transactions across the globe.
1. Money transfer
Though there are various services that already exist for sending money across the globe such as PayPal, Western Union, MoneyGram and so on, virtual currencies have heralded the possibility of cheaper, faster and secure payment systems. Additionally cryptocurrencies have the advantage of not having restrictions such as geographical location and so on.
2. Tracking energy usage
Technologies based on blockchain have emerged and these promise to track energy usage accurately. These technologies include Brooklyn?s Exergy and Netherlands? Powerpeers. With these technologies energy users are able to tell what kind of source generated the electricity they are consuming.
In the past the tracking of renewable energy was done using tradable certificates which were issued by authorities. These certificates have their limitations which blockchain can address.
3. Financial markets
Blockchain technology has a role to play with regards to the trading of commodities and securities. The main securities exchange of Australia is leading the way with regards to this as it has deployed a system powered by the technology for its operations.
Trust is fundamental with regards to elections. The electorate also need to be sure that the results will not be manipulated. Due to its decentralized nature which gives it immutability blockchain has been considered for use in elections.
In Moscow for instance the technology is being tested for use in local government elections. One of the benefits that is likely to result from this is the reduction of electoral fraud cases.
5. Smart contracts
Contractual transactions are not only time-consuming but they can also be expensive since in some cases legal expertise may need to be hired. Smart contracts, which are basically agreements based on blockchain which are automatically signed, validated and enforced, are thus a solution saving businesses time and money.
When transactions are recorded on blockchain they are safe not only from human error but also from tampering. And because the nature of the blockchain technology is such that the verification of records happens as they are moved from a blockchain node to another, a traceable audit trail is left behind.
7. Food safety
Blockchain can be used to enhance food safety since whenever there is a problem it is possible to ?retrace footsteps? all the way to the origin. This can assist in investigations as well as in remedial measures.
8. Supply chain
With regards to the management of the supply chain, the benefits of blockchain technology include offering traceability as well as reducing costs. This means that with this technology the movement of goods can be tracked much more effectively and efficiently saving time and costs.
Additionally transparency is enhanced as processes that include payments and ownership transfer are simplified.
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