The blockchain technology has come a long way since the advent of Bitcoin in 2008. Fast cross-border payments, food provenance, digital voting, protection of intellectual rights management, smart contracts and more have emerged as popular use-cases of the technology.
The utility of the blockchain technology can be gauged from its increasing adoption. According to Statista, the spending on blockchain technology is expected to reach 15.9 billion by 2023. The blockchain industry is growing exponentially. If you’re a blockchain developer or a technologist, here are a few blockchain trends that are expected to pick up in 2020.
- Blockchain as a Service (BaaS)
In the past few years, as-a-service model has grown by leaps and bounds in the industry. So it was inevitable that blockchain-as-as service (BaaS) will emerge. BaaS allows start-ups and enterprises to build blockchain-based applications — Dapps, smart contracts, and more – without setting up blockchain networks. Amazon, IBM, and Microsoft are a few companies that currently offer BaaS.
BaaS market is expected to reach $24.94 by 2027.
- Federated Blockchain Networks
Blockchain networks are categorized as private, public, and federated (or Hybrid) network. Bitcoin is an example for a public blockchain network. Companies use a private blockchain network to optimize their business processes. Walmart food tracking network can be categorized as a private blockchain network. Federated blockchain network are where a node is validated by multiple authorities. For instance, imagine an industry-wide blockchain network in which a group of companies validate a transaction, instead of one authority.
The application of federated blockchain network is expected to increase in 2020.
- Stable coins will emerge
Bitcoin, Ripple, Ether, and other cryptocurrencies are highly volatile. This means their value fluctuates constantly which is extremely challenging to regulate for the industry. In the wake of this, stable coins (whose value will rely on fiat currency) are rising. Tether, TrueUSD, USD Coin, and Gemini Dollar are a few examples of stable coins.
- Merging of social media and blockchain
Social media is a source of huge amounts of data. The number of users on social media networks is expected to increase to 3.43 billion by 2023, according to Statista. This calls for user data and privacy protection, and content relevance. Merging social media with blockchain will pave the way for data protection and ensure the untraceability of user data.
Data privacy and security is an all-time concern in the industry. Blockchain technology will see an entry in this field.
- Blockchain and IoT
The amount of interconnected devices is expected to increase to 26 million in 2020. The architecture of connected devices is a reason for data hacks and security. Vendors are looking for ways to ramp the security of connected devices. The increasing number of devices makes the IoT network more vulnerable.
Three things that make the IoT network more secure with the help of blockchain are:
- Blockchain is a private network, so everyone on the network can see the blocks. Users will still have the private keys to control their transactions on the network.
- Blockchain is a decentralized network. So there’s no single point of failure.
- Blockchain secures the database as data can’t be altered.
- Blockchain and AI
Artificial intelligence is pervading all spheres of business. According to IDC, spending on artificial intelligence is expected to reach $57.6 billion in 2020. Integration of blockchain with artificial intelligence will improve applications much more by increasing efficiency.
Further, blockchain can trace back decisions made by machine learning to understand how a decision was made. This way artificial intelligence will be more understandable and coherent to users. Some computing power, data protection, and data monetization are some examples of applications of artificial intelligence in the blockchain.