In this article, you will learn about several trends that will transform the blockchain industry in 2020.
Blockchain and cryptocurrencies have been in the news for both the right and wrong reasons for quite some time now. From security and privacy issues to its wider adoption, 2019 was a fascinating year for the blockchain industry.
We saw new cryptocurrencies, partnerships and blockchain protocols. Even the US and Chinese governments have started taking keen interest in blockchain technology. 2020 will be no different.
Do you want to implement blockchain technology in your business and want to accept cryptocurrency payments? Do you want to make money online by buying and selling cryptocurrencies? If the answer to both these questions is yes, then you might want to know about the latest trends and technologies. How will the industry evolve in 2020 and beyond?
Blockchain as a Service (BaaS)
You might be familiar with Infrastructure as a Service, Software as a Service and Platform as a Service but have you ever heard about Blockchain as a Service? I can bet, you have not. Blockchain as a Service is basically a cloud-based service which enables users to develop their own digital products by using blockchain technology.
You can create anything from decentralized applications, independent services or smart contracts. Companies like Microsoft and Amazon are leading the way in terms of BaaS services and transforming the future of blockchain applications.
Stablecoins Go Mainstream
There is no denying the fact that Bitcoin is one of the most popular cryptocurrencies, to the extent that most people refer to blockchain technology as bitcoin. Just like every other cryptocurrency, bitcoin also has its downsides. It is volatile in nature, which means that its value can fluctuate very quickly. To overcome this weakness, Stablecoins were introduced.
As the name suggests, each coin has a stable value, which makes it stand out from other cryptocurrencies out there. Although stablecoins are still at early stages, Facebook’s announcement of introducing its own stable cryptocurrency called Libra, gave them a much-required boost. 2020 will be the year when we will see stablecoins spread even more.
With investors, merchants and even consumers looking for alternative currencies that do not fluctuate in value, Stablecoins can serve as a perfect alternative due to the stable price.
Even though, stablecoins are only being developed by the private sector, we will see governments join in the action very soon.
Federated Blockchain Networks
There are four types of blockchain networks.
In a federated blockchain network environment, multiple authorities control nodes in blockchain network instead of a single authority. This means that a group validates blocks on various nodes before a transaction can be processed. This adds extra layer of security and prevents unlawful transactions to pass through. More and more businesses will opt for a federated blockchain model as it offers more room for customization and is a great choice for specific use cases and applications.
IoT and Blockchain Merge
As cybersecurity attacks become more sophisticated, we might see complex security issues pop up. IoT will be on the receiving end of this as we see a surge in IoT devices and network hacking incidents in 2020. The centralized architecture of IoT complicates matters even worse.
With billions of connected devices, hackers have a large attack surface to target. This means that compromising IoT devices is easy and they can use these compromised devices as a way to access critical business infrastructures. Keep an eye on unattended devices because they become the prime target for hackers.
Blockchain will play a pivotal role in improving IoT security. Blockchain is public and therefore transparent. This means that everyone involved in the transaction can see the blocks and the transaction.
What’s more, blockchain is decentralized which means that no single authority can approve the transaction, making it much more secure as compared to centralized systems. You can only add new data to the database but cannot tinker with existing data in the ledger.
Just like large scale enterprises, government agencies can also take advantage of distributed ledger for handling large amounts of data. By streamlining data management, blockchain can enhance the productivity and efficiency of government agencies.
Apart from that, we might also see governments and financial institutions such as banks adopt blockchain powered currencies. The future of digital money looks brighter than ever and it will replace paper money sooner than we think. This will be a big step towards blockchain adoption as the cryptocurrency goes mainstream.
AI and Machine Learning
Automation and artificial intelligence will accelerate development of blockchain applications. Blockchain can be used to record ledger data and variables. By using machine learning on the recorded data, it becomes easier to make the right decisions.
Cryptocurrency mining and implementing blockchain technology demands a lot of resources so we need a technology that can make blockchain more efficient. That is exactly what AI and machine learning can do.
With AI spending at an all-time high, we might see businesses shift towards artificial intelligence with blockchain integration. This will give rise to new applications such as data protection, data monetization, smart computing and we can expect trustworthy decisions from AI and blockchain integration.
Rising Demand for Blockchain Experts
Expertise in blockchain technologies and crypto assets will make you stand out from the crowd. Since there are only a handful of professionals specializing in blockchain technology and growing number of business applications, there will be high demand for professionals skilled in blockchain technologies. Businesses implementing blockchain technologies will be ready to pay top dollar to hire those professionals.
Universities are already introducing degrees in Blockchain, but it will not be sufficient as the number of graduating students won’t be enough to fill in the new job roles. To bridge that talent gap, companies will organize training programs which will prepare their employees to handle blockchain networks.