Financial services are a ripe target for Blockchain projects because today’s banking systems are still based on archaic ideas that have been faithfully and painfully digitized, and because these systems are archaic, they are expensive to maintain and operate. Banks almost have a good reason to charge the high service fees they do – their systems are not efficient. These systems have many layers of redundant data, as everyone involved with a transaction has to have their version of the transaction details. And then there is the business of ensuring that there is a trusted third party to clear all these transactions – requiring even more versions of the same data. Blockchain technology holds out the promise of addressing these issues, as each transaction will be captured in just ONE block on the chain, and because it is a distributed database, security and integrity is built-in and assured. It may take some time to build up trust in these new systems, given that the verifiers of Blockchain transactions are not the traditional clearing houses that banks use and trust today. Trust by the banks in a new technology will take time, and even more time will be needed for that trust to trickle down to consumers.
Another company that may soon be ready to give CC’s and Blockchain a big boost is Amazon. It looks like Amazon is getting ready to launch their very own crypto currency. This is a company with revenues the size of a good-sized country, and they are in a position to issue a digital token that would be fully convertible with other CC’s, and fiat currencies too. A move like this would enable Amazon to:
- issue (AMAZON) coins to reward and incentivize developers on any of its platforms
- issue coins to consumers to use for in-app purchases
- issue coins to game players for in-game purchase of virtual goodies
- issue coins to regular customers as part of a loyalty programme
Amazon may have the ideal ecosystem of customers and partners to make this all happen. Worldwide they have about 300 million customer accounts, roughly the population of the USA, and they have 100,000 sellers on their platforms, with millions of items for sale. There is hardly a more mainstream company than Amazon, with a massive, vibrant economy all linked in. Amazon’s imminent entry into the world of CC’s may signal the adoption of blockchain technology by mainstream institutions on a large scale. What could be just around the corner if an AMAZON coin comes into play is the likes of a DISNEY Coin, a DELTA AIRLINES coin, a CARNIVAL CRUISES coin, a HOME DEPOT coin – you get the picture.