One of the most fascinating things about blockchain is that it is still very much in its infancy and at this stage, it is very difficult to tell where it is heading. When the technology was first designed, it was only meant to function as a decentralised ledger for the cryptocurrency Bitcoin. Fast forward almost 10 years and it is on the cusp of disrupting every industry imaginable from corporate services to healthcare to logistics.
So far, 2018 has been a whirlwind of new developments and use cases, but the best is yet to come. Here is what we are looking forward to in the second half of 2018.
It is a well-known fact that the blockchain network is a little bit sluggish. As a result, many projects have popped up alongside various altcoins and their own, faster blockchains. All of these projects will continue to compete with each other meaning we can expect to see a dramatic increase in the speed of new networks in the coming months.
We have had a glimpse at the potential that smart contracts have to offer, but there is so much more to come. Various professional industries such as the legal and insurance sector are set to be completely transformed by the power of blockchain.
It seems probable that in the next few months to a year, we could see all insurance claims being settled automatically based on algorithms that are stored with smart contracts. All of the information that one might need to process a claim will be stored in one place, and the outcome will be decided based on certain standards and actions being satisfied. In other words, the process of settling an insurance claim can be done without the need for any human interaction.
Not only will this increase the accuracy of claim settling but it will significantly decrease the cost for insurance companies which could lead to them reducing premiums if they are so inclined.
One of the most eagerly anticipated uses of blockchain is a decentralised autonomous organisation of DAO. Over $150 million of venture capital funds have been raised to create and launch the first DAO back in 2016 but unfortunately, the project was the victim of hackers and was quickly cancelled.
Since then, the hype surrounding DAOs died down but there is still plenty of work going on in the sector to improve its capability. May still believe that we are not far from seeing the first business or corporation that is managed by a program, rather than a human. Scary stuff!
Whilst it is difficult to predict the direction that blockchain will take, we can safely say that so far we have only scratched the surface of its capabilities.