Blockchain has revolutionized several industries in India and abroad. Most people think that blockchain and bitcoin are synonymous, but that’s not the case. You may think of it as the technology used behind Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, but that doesn’t completely describe blockchain.
If you are wondering – What is it? How can it change the Indian ecosystem? Then keep calm, my friend, because you have come to the right place. Let’s dive deep in.
What is blockchain?
A blockchain is a digital ledger distributed across a network of computers or nodes. It records transactions in near real-time and is digitally unchangeable. In a business network, it makes it easier to record transactions and track assets. The asset can be a tangible asset like a house or intangible like a patent. You can record or trade anything of value on a blockchain.
The respective consensus of the network participants (called nodes) is required for each future transaction to be added to the ledger, generating a continual control method regarding manipulation, errors, and data quality.
The blockchain is immutable and irreversible. Hence it allows the entire process to be transparent and fraud-free. You must be wondering how this is possible. Blockchain uses a basic data structure is known as a Merkle tree or Hash tree, which provides immutability and irreversibility.
Why is Blockchain Important?
The internet brought several changes to our world, and it made it a completely different place. The internet helped us with gaining information, distribution, and communication. However, it failed to solve other major problems like providing trust and disintermediation. Instead, it gave us a big pool of information that is hardly trustable and some big intermediaries like amazon and google.
Blockchain has the potential to solve these problems and change our world in the coming years.
The world today is running on data and information. Every business and individual has a lot of data and information connected to it that ought to be secured. It is where blockchain comes into play. It delivers immediate, shareable, and entirely transparent information kept on an immutable ledger that permissioned network users can only view. Blockchain is excellent for delivering that information. One may track Orders, payments, accounts, production, and much more using a blockchain network.
Blockchain in Indian Ecosystem
Today, blockchain is a popular technology in the banking, insurance, and card industries. These industries are aware that blockchain has the potential to disrupt their traditional business models for the better.
Players in most of these industries are banding together to establish a consortium to reap the benefits of blockchain on a larger scale. However, there are other industries as well that are trying in their full capacity to incorporate blockchain.
Blockchain technology usage and investments in India are rapidly increasing across multiple industries. Moreover, many Indian state governments, including Telangana, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Maharashtra, are sponsoring blockchain businesses and projects and hosting conferences and hackathons on the subject, according to the report.
Let’s look at all the current and potential applications of blockchain in the Indian ecosystem-
ICICI and NBD collaboration
ICICI Bank and Emirates NBD collaborated with Infosys Finacle on a groundbreaking project to successfully execute international trade financing and remittance transactions utilizing blockchain. Hence, Emirates NBD became the first bank in the United Arab Emirates, and ICICI Bank became the first Indian bank to test a financial network based on blockchain.
Banks and KYC
Banks in India were first to see the benefits of blockchain for efficient banking operations, and they are effectively utilizing the technology’s KYC procedures.
SBI is the first bank to deploy blockchain for KYC and remittances. Axis, HDFC, and ICICI banks followed SBI and are now implementing blockchain for KYC and trade finance procedures.
Blockchain in the entertainment sector
Tech Mahindra has announced a new digital platform for the global media and entertainment sector called bCRMS (Blockchain-based Contracts and Rights Management System).
The technology will use IBM blockchain to help production houses and content providers track revenue, royalty payments, manage rights, and combat content piracy. Thus, a permissioned distributed ledger is all set to change supplier-to-manufacturer trade financing transactions.
TCS and Microsoft’s initiative
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has teamed up with Microsoft and R3 to promote blockchain adoption across industries. Track and trace, digital identification, asset monetization, assets in common, and tokenization are among the five Blockchain platforms it is developing.
Blockchain and Insurance
Cognizant has collaborated with insurance companies like ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, SBI Life Insurance, HDFC Life, Kotak Life, and others to develop a secure data-sharing solution based on the Corda blockchain technology. There are several problems in the claim management system that led to a significant amount of loss every year. Banks can use blockchain to address these problems effectively.
Blockchain Transactions Testing
Axis Bank and Kotak Mahindra are collaborating to test Blockchain transactions, focusing on cross-border remittance and trade settlements.
Blockchain-based public project
IndiaChain is a public project that will use blockchain to improve the functionality of government administration. It will incorporate blockchain for efficient and transparent government subsidy distribution, streamlined record-keeping, systematic tax monitoring, and controlled supply chain management. The project also intends to enter the education sector to keep a check on fake certificates and degrees.
The Hype for blockchain is currently at its apex. It is in the same position that the internet was in the 1990s. It’s still in its developing state, with most of its effective uses yet to be developed.
Despite all this, blockchain has the potential to change our world in the same way as the internet did. We can say that the future is blockchain, and it will completely disrupt the current systems.
Blockchain can change the business model of almost every industry. It is time to realize its potential and make the best out of blockchain technology.
It is good that India is incorporating blockchain technology in several industries in India. Yet, there is a lot left to discover and change.