Bitcoin, Ethereum, and IOTA are three of the biggest cryptocurrencies in the industry, but the biggest restriction is the lack of application past the marketplace. However, Volkswagen is rolling out new ideas that will allow these three tokens to participate in real-world purchases. They have decided to team up with their subsidiaries in a project that will integrate cryptocurrency and blockchain solutions into mainstream use.
In the announcement, Nicolai Bartkowiak of Volkswagen said,
“We’re building our own blockchain solution, regardless of whether they’re based on IOTA, Ethereum, or other crypto technologies… We want to create added value for our customers. More security, more transparency, and partnership approaches to projects.”
Bringing #blockchain systems to the road: We’re working full steam ahead on making super-safe #cryptosystems available to our customers. For filling the tank, unlocking your car – and all kinds of other possibilities: #bitcoin #ethereum #iota
— Volkswagen Group (@VWGroup) August 8, 2018
To add to this sentiment, the official Twitter profile for the Volkswagen Group posted the following:
“Bringing #blockchain systems to the road: We’re working full steam ahead on making super-safe #cryptosystems available to our customers. For filling the tank, unlocking your car – and all kinds of other possibilities: #bitcoin #ethereum #iota”
The official website continues to elaborate, saying that the company is “testing blockchain systems,” which will help them integrate the technology into their own vehicles. Some of the benefits that they list include the upgrades to their maintenance, general logistics, establishing vehicles that require no driver, and tamper-proof odometers. These changes give more integrity to the German company.
Volkswagen seems to be primarily excited over the changes that Bitcoin can bring, calling it the “most popular area of application for blockchain technology. The website also said that this token’s model for operation and use makes it “very secure.” It continues, saying, “Most of them have thus far been used for digital currency, such as Bitcoin, IOTA, and Ethereum. But this new technology is finding an ever-greater number of applications.”
Benjamin Sinram and Bartkowiak, who make up the IT department, want to use the cryptocurrency as a segue into blockchain technology, hoping to make their customers more familiar with its concept. With the ability to use blockchain for logistical purposes and digital applications, there is plenty to be helped as the company learns more. In reference to the real-world application of it, Bartkowiak said,
“Blockchain technology also offers a lot of opportunities when it comes to self-driving vehicles. It can protect cars from hackers better than other technologies, and help with automatic payments at fueling stations or car washes.”
Moving to Mainstream
Even though this is the first move to collaborate with cryptocurrency, Volkswagen is anything but new to the industry. Towards the beginning of 2018, they formed a partnership with IOTA, which is the 10th largest crypto globally, after they had already become a member of the supervisory board with the IOTA foundation.
Presently, there are three projects in the works. The first is to develop a mileage clocking system, which would make it harder to tamper with odometers, adding greater trust to the number that customers see when they buy a vehicle.
“Customers can save their odometer readings in a distributed ledger system at regular intervals. The data cannot be changed retroactively without somebody noticing that they’ve been manipulated.”
Porsche is working on a similar model to protect their cars from hackers, though they are still in the early stages.
Most of the work being done for this first application is by Volkswagen Financial Services, which is based out of Great Britain. They are simplifying the connection between customers and those that offer electric charging stations.
“Different providers have different terms and methods of payment, which can often make it complicated for customers to charge their electric vehicles. We want to make this easier and improve the customer experience with a new technology,” said Tobias Lipfert, who is a part of the Volkswagen Financial Services AG.
Volkswagen is part of a larger whole. Their subsidiaries include equally big names like Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, and Ducati, so their strides will end up impacting the rest of the companies as well. Using their resources, bringing cryptocurrency to mainstream should be an easily conquered mission.