Numerous companies are trying to find new applications of bitcoin’s underlying technology block chain.
Bitcoin and its underlying technology block chain have gained a lot of attention over the last 2 years. The best way to describe the block chain is as a public ledger.
Individuals and companies can download the Bitcoin software and gain access to the block chain.
They can search on it and also submit transactions to the network. Companies like chain.com help developers build Bitcoin applications and highlight block chain’s true capabilities.
Entrepreneurs around the world are working relentlessly to harness the technology and use it for something other than bitcoin transactions.
They believe that the block chain has potential to surpass the traditional financial systems and also how financial assets are transferred and recorded.
The block chain would be great for any application which requires a trusted intermediary for verification. Chain.com is companies which can help developers build such bitcoin applications.
Co-founder of Chain.com Adam Ludwin explained “There’s a race going on to extend the block chain’s capabilities.” The new batch of applications built on the block chain is already being highlighted in the Bitcoin conferences and online forums.
Many financial institutes and multinational telecommunications companies are trying to take advantage of the block chain. Chain.com caters around 5000 users.
According to Mr. Ludwin, 20% of them are developing non-financial block-chain applications. The figure was below 10% 12 months ago.
As the investors are beginning to bet on the technology, companies working on block chain applications are securing chunks of financing.
Blockstream is trying to increase the block chain’s capabilities. In November, it raised $21m while Ripple Labs raised $9m.
Khosla Ventures is a VC firm which supports bitcoin related companies like Blockstream and Chain.
Keith Rabois from Khosla said the company’s investments were influenced by the belief that block chain would ultimately change the way society sees transactions.
He said, “Anytime there’s a broker — anytime there’s an expert attesting to the validity of something — all of that could be obviated by the block chain.
It’s not a guaranteed success, but the upside is so large that as a venture investor, it’s an extremely attractive investment opportunity.”
Many companies like Philippines-based Coins.ph are using the block chain to develop new ways to transfer money.
Coins.ph used block chain’s p2p technology to boost global payments and the remittance business. The lowered cost and faster transactions make this possible.
Most start-ups focus on financial applications on the block chain while very little experiment with other uses of the platform. However, the gap is narrowing and companies are seeking new applications of the block chain.
BlockSign uses the block chain to verify signed documents while Filecoin has plans to build a marketplace for storing data using block chain.
PeerNova is developing an innovative technology which will use the block chain to prove document authenticity.
Naveed Sherwani, the firm’s chief executive, said “Our entire system of contracts is based on a trusted third party. [But with the block chain,] there is no third party anymore.”