With the recent market excitement and business news in cryptocurrencies, the underlying blockchain technology has become a little more mainstream than some obscure digital currency. The technical and implementation details of blockchain remain a very confusing topic. The good news is that cloud providers are trying to help break down those implementation barriers. They are doing this by creating Blockchain as a Service (BAAS) delivery model. This is very similar to the other models as a service: Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), etc. that simplify very complex and costly implementations. There are very real business opportunities to apply blockchain to business solutions where ensuring raw data not being changed and/or compromised.
With a blockchain-powered solution, sensors could deliver temperature and humidity information to a smart contract, which would monitor the status of the environment against the terms agreed to by the supply chain participants.
Harvard Business Review
Harvard Business Review last fall published a paper on how business can leverage blockchain beyond cryptocurrencies. It uses a contractual service level agreement between an Ice Cream company and its supply chain vendors to keep ice cream frozen and the right conditions is paramount to food safety and overall quality. By leveraging temperature sensors on a truck and Internet of Things (IoT) sensors, the companies can use blockchain technology to assure compliance and store the temperature IoT sensor data storing it using blockchain to ensure that neither party modifies the data. This ensures the data is secure and not manipulated as it has contractual consequences of its accuracy. The hypothetical case study is a very interesting read that has real business applications.
As a Service
The major cloud providers are already providing templates on how to use Blockchain as a Service – with Google being the exception – in the links below: