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Blockchain is a powerful force for change. And this potential already shows. As the blockchain’s most well-known real-life application, cryptocurrencies are taking the world by storm. Even Wall Street institutions now value cryptocurrencies as legitimate assets, while Bitcoin ATMs are on the rise worldwide. But blockchain technology is having an impact beyond crypto-traders. So, let us take a look at some practical applications of the decentralised network known as blockchain.
Blockchain: how does it work?
Blockchain has been such a hot topic lately that the word has made it to the dictionary. But what is this technology exactly? Simply put, blockchain is a system that makes a digital record of every cryptocurrency transaction. This ever-increasing list of records, known as blocks, is then secured by cryptography. Thus, transactions made on this digital ledger are impossible to corrupt or manipulate. Besides, there is no need for bank or government intervention, since blockchain transactions are independent of any central authority.
4 practical applications of blockchain technology
Blockchain is reinventing business. And smart contracts are an efficient tool for companies to cut out on time loss and expenses. Indeed, these self-executing contracts mean that no third-party gets involved as the contract itself acts as an intermediary. Therefore, the lack of go-between is not only cost-effective. It also helps to streamline tedious tasks. And since each transaction is processed automatically, their completion is only a matter of minutes.
Besides, such contracts allow both buyer and seller to keep track of the transaction history throughout the operation. This transparency is a perfect way to increase trust between both parties, from real estate purchase agreements to art deals.
Copyright protection and royalty distribution
Intellectual property theft has long plagued artists. In the music industry, for instance, the sharing of songs online makes it impossible to track their circulation. As a result, musicians generate less profit from their creative work.
So, thanks to blockchain, artists can use smart contracts to create a decentralised database that facilitates royalty distribution. Art creators then receive a percentage every time a transaction goes on the record. And the art market already jumped on the blockchain bandwagon, thanks to the rise of NFTs.
For crypto-traders, the days of merely mining Bitcoin are long gone. Now is the time of non-fungible tokens. And blockchain-based cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum and Solana are fuelling the NFT craze. In essence, these tokens are unique digital collectibles that speculators buy and trade to diversify their portfolio. Thus, anything has the potential to be tokenised, from Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s first-ever tweet to an artwork.
And the art market is exceptionally fond of NFTs. Indeed, a blockchain transaction provides proof of ownership akin to a certificate of authenticity, which allows distinguishing an original work from a copy. But NFTs are also breaking boundaries in the marketing industry, from luxury brand Burberry to fast-food giant Pizza Hut.
International payment processing
Transferring money overseas is a tedious process. So is buying an item in a different currency. And on top of long transaction delays, international money transfers leverage heavy fees. But cryptocurrencies make it easy to proceed to instant transfers across borders. In addition, all crypto assets are worth the same anywhere on the planet. Businesses can, therefore, sell digital products at the same price worldwide.
Likewise, online entertainment platforms can tap into a larger market with the help of cryptocurrencies. That is why Bitcoin casinos and sportsbooks are particularly popular in regions where land-based gambling is prohibited, such as the Middle East. So, to make the most of their betting experience, players in the MENA region can find helpful reviews online. But Bitcoin is not the only payment method on the table. Broad options cater to all players’ needs, such as Skrill or ecoPayz. Thus, gamblers can access a comprehensive list of reliable platforms, along with advice on how to wager safely.
As of today, there are already several applications of the blockchain. The list goes on, from digital ID to healthcare data, or financial services. And many more practical uses of this technology are on the way. However, blockchain technology definitely has its pros and cons. What’s for sure, though, is that the blockchain revolution is here to stay.
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