The Bitcoin and Blockchain technology allow society to bypass the need for doing business with certain third parties or middlemen. They make life more efficient in a sense.
The Blockchain has the possibility to massively affect certain industries that we as a society have had to rely on, well, forever actually.
Let’s dive into what industries the Blockchain can disrupt, we will focus primarily on those that have high costs, middlemen, aren’t completely transparent (voting), and are inefficient.
Real estate and rentals
The transactional nature of the real estate industry is confusing, inefficient, and, perhaps most importantly, extremely expensive. There is a long string of middlemen (think brokers, titling agencies, inspectors, etc.) who slow down the process, amplify human error, and drive up the costs of doing business.
A public, distributed blockchain ledger that acts as a living database for all deals, negotiations, and settlements in the industry can overcome many of these shortcomings and reduce the need for “trust managers.”
Investing in real estate and renting out properties is somewhat inefficient. Sure, you do have services like Airbnb that can be used for short-term rentals to great success. However, both hosts and potential visitors need to pay a fat fee to the Airbnb platform. Simply because they act as middlemen and aggregators.
The traditional property renting process requires you to draft a lease agreement, go through a rental agency, sign a ton of papers, and waste time that could be better spent.
Don’t even get me started on buying property from someone. Do you know how much paperwork is involved in that? A lot. There’s going to be a high-quality real estate ICO that will announce itself soon. Don’t bother looking now, because what you will find, won’t be it. And I can’t disclose any details yet, but I will let you guys know when I can.
So, with Blockchain technology, we can bypass the need for middlemen when renting an apartment or buying a home.
Let me give an example of how the smart contracts based off of the Ethereum Blockchain would help us out.
Imagine that you need a place to live, and I happen to have a pretty chill flat that you like. I trust you and you trust me. I am also comfortable in providing you with access to the flat if you give me money.
Why on earth would we need an agent then? Ah, to make sure that everything is documented and legally binding.
Cool, but I won’t just make a smart contract with predetermined conditions?
For example, if you send me ETH by December 1st, you get a digital access code to my flat via the smart contract on the 5th of December. Don’t send me money, don’t get a key. Send me money and don’t get a key, get your money back. Simple, quick, cheap.
You get the idea.
Having the right to vote for something is important. However, votes also raise a lot of commotion and furor.
The U.S presidential election of 2016 can act as the perfect example. People are still complaining about the possibility of Russia influencing the voting outcome.
Additionally, the factor of human error, unethical actions, hackers, and other nonsense needs to be taken into consideration here.
The bottom line is that maintaining a centralized voting system is difficult and the people behind managing it can definitely not be trusted entirely.
Blockchain technology, with its immutable cryptographic transaction storing mechanisms, could do away with all of that.
Votes cast on a Blockchain system cannot be altered, copied, deleted, or stolen. Everything on the ledger, clear as day, available for everyone to see.
The use case of Blockchain technology in regards to voting is quite obvious.
The Blockchain allows for everything to be traceable back to its source. Can you imagine what that could mean for shipping?
A lot of products and items are forged on a regular basis. You might shill out a lot of some for some tech that you believed to be authentic, only to find out that it was fake later on.
Additionally, a lot of transportation and freight industries are stuffed to the brim with third parties and fees for having to function and communicate with one another.
The Blockchain can alleviate most of the stress in the shipping industry thanks to its unchangeable records, coherent data, superior transaction tracking, automatic fulfillment, and supreme accountability.
Imagine being able to track every single piece of a product that you buy in a store all the way back to its source, and feeling confident that you get what you pay for and not a knockoff.
Cybersecurity and data protection
In 2016, the average annual loss per company worldwide due to protecting against cyber threats was nearly $17 million in the United States alone. By 2019, it is expected that cybercrime will cost businesses (in total) of $2 trillion. With growing costs and risks to both our personal and professional security, the threat of cyber attacks is clearly an important problem.
Do you guys remember the Target credit card hack of 2013? When over 40,000,000 customer accounts containing sensitive information and credit card data were stolen?
Cybersecurity and data protection are big issues. The costs associated with keeping customer data safe are growing too. Last year, the United States spent almost $20 million on cybersecurity.
Thankfully the Blockchain is designed to be pretty much impregnable. It’s impossible to hack just one transaction on the Blockchain because of the proof-of-work system in place. So a hacker would have to compromise the ENTIRE Blockchain in order to do his deed. I sincerely doubt that a hacker with enough computing power to do that exists.
Therefore, Blockchains can be used to fend off or even prevent hacks and cyber attacks by businesses where they could easily be implemented. Which is pretty much any business really.
As a matter of fact, just recently, 14 European insurance providers decided to partner with Deloitte and few other companies to implement a Blockchain system to protect client data in a highly secure manner.
But actually, the Blockchain will disrupt every industry, not just the ones mentioned above.