IBM Spotlights ‘Trust’ as Latest and Greatest Importance of Blockchain Implementation Benefits
The blockchain is a technology that has the potential to bring great change to the world of business, and disrupt it in a lot of positive ways. However, in order to be able to do it, it requires something that many other modern businesses do — trust.
Think of numerous new business models that are based on peer-to-peer exchange, such as Uber rides or AirBnB. Whether it is accepting strangers into your home or entering a car of a complete stranger — trust is a necessary factor, which is required in massive quantities. The same is true for blockchain, where companies need to come together and become a part of the same network.
They need to be able to trust their partners, and more importantly, to believe that the value of working closely with partners is worth it and that it will help them outperform the competition. The trust is necessary as data needs to be shared openly, including insights, operational processes, as well as the total list of participating partners.
The Benefits Of Joining The Network
The investments in DLT sector continue to grow rapidly, meaning that it is more important than ever for companies to start considering blockchain implementation as part of their business model's structure. Of course, there are numerous issues that need to be considered and polished, and IBM has recognized them in their recent blockchain study.
The study took different perspectives, and it managed to view the blockchain from a critical standpoint. It noted that the blockchain utility network requires industry players to establish trust between one another, and partner up in order to benefit from a greater value that such a move might bring. The value is driven by teamwork between companies, and everyone involved can benefit as the network continues to expand and grow.
A number of companies already recognized this and such effects can be seen in the TradeLens blockchain-based shipping network. Meanwhile, network effects gained thanks to the influence of companies such as IBM or Maersk can easily be sustained. Not only do these firms already trust their partners, but the blockchain they are sharing can easily accommodate for scaling.
TradeLens' network saw a massive growth since it was established, currently has over 100 partners. Up to 40 of them are shippers, and nearly 50 represent ports and terminals. In addition, there are eight government authorities. The result, according to one survey, is that about one-third of partners see massive amounts of capital, with over $1.2 trillion dedicated to launching new platform business models.
These are massive investments which can serve as an example of how the business market has the potential to shift towards a more democratic way of operating, as well as what the benefits might include. The biggest obstacle is the mentality, and significant progress was noticed in this aspect as well.
The Evolution Of Blockchain Networks
As mentioned, the interest in integrating blockchain into various businesses' is growing, but it is not without its own issues. One such problem is identifying a proper strategy for bringing established businesses together and joining them with the technology that also requires thoughtful design and careful implementation. It is also believed that the success of these businesses depends on their established use case since this single aspect sets a precedent for the advancement of the entire network. In other words, it all comes back to the collaborations between players within the industry.
The influence of the players if, of course, necessary for the network's success. However, it is more than that, as there is also a strong need for the governance of these interactions. In order for success to be achieved, there needs to be a carefully nurtured trust between partners who act as network participants.
Further, the use of blockchain will have additional consequences, such as the near-elimination of the need to trust exchange partners. This is due to the increased use of smart contracts and transparency that is one of their greatest aspects. The use of smart contracts stresses accountability, but network players will still have to be able to rely on one another, particularly because the blockchain industry is still in its early stage, and so are these networks. This is what makes it difficult to predict what exact changes the networks might bring, or which direction the transformations of the business model might take.
The blockchain industry still has a long way to go, but in order to progress further, it requires time, as well as trust. This will lead to better, faster development, with fewer setbacks, and many problems solved within each industry that chooses to accept the new technology.