So-called financial technology, or fintech, sucks up a lot of the oxygen when it comes to cryptos.
It’s understandable. No industry is more regulated than the financial sector, and more pervasively connected with governments and powerful business interests.
But decentralized, crypto powered trustless blockchain technologies are innovating with use cases across a wide range of industries.
A lengthy 2022 research paper by CB Insights covered some of the outside the fintech box projects.
The stall out in 2022 of the crypto sector is showing signs of thawing. No matter when it ends, many may look back at the period as a time opportunity, hopefully not missed.
Because a few interesting examples can serve to illustrate just how wide crypto disruption promises to go from here into the future.
Self-Executing Wills, Counterfeit Cut-Offs
The complications of carrying out last wishes is meeting smart contract and automated transaction crypto tech.
Zweispace, based in Japan, is developing a self-executing will platform built on blockchain technology that, among other things, can automatically distribute assets from inheritance trusts to beneficiaries upon confirmation of the trustee’s passing, reducing or even eliminating the role of Executors.
Tracking and ensuring provenance of real world items and processes is something crucial to many industries and their customers. And the proven transparency and integrity features of blockchains is well suited to provide solutions.
Automakers are leading the way in adopting blockchain technology.
The Mobility Open Blockchain Initiative (MOBI), a consortium that includes Ford, Honda, GM and others are using a shared ledger that can help track car maintenance histories, registrations, even across borders, thanks to a Vehicle Identity (VID) Standard component.
Daimler, meanwhile, is involved with Singapore’s Ocean Protocol, a decentralized data exchange, to examine how blockchain can distribute supply chain data among partners and hubs for production.
Platforms like Authena and Seal are helping companies in the perfume, food and other industries tag, track and authenticate products using IoT (Internet of Things) and blockchain technologies.
Seal uses a proprietary “pairing” technology that integrates a chip, discreetly and securely into a product, which is then bound to a digital counterpart on the blockchain.
According to the company, verification of product authenticity is instantaneous with a simple tap or scan with any smart device.
The Seal Network allows vendors—and buyers—to use their smartphone to verify the authenticity of what they’re purchasing. It could be a fine handbag, designer clothing, or practically anything else.
With counterfeit products defrauding consumers 2.81 trillion dollars in value annually, according to the company, the value of reliable authenticating tech is obvious.
More Flexibility For Riders and Drivers Just Down The Road?
Ride hailing apps like Uber and Lyft completely transformed the cab industry. Now those companies are facing competition from decentralized startups offering more flexibility.
India based Drife, built on Ethereum and web3 technology, has a DRF token which can be used in transactions, and staked for rewards. Drife drivers pay an annual fee to use the app rather than being charged a fee for each fare. Drife is competing for market share with Uber in India.
Company CEO Firdosh Sheikh has said she was an Uber “power user,” but learned that many drivers were frustrated with that platform’s commission rates and often opaque rules.
Sheikh was also dissatisfied with the customer experience, having little choice over fare prices or who provided the ride.
Sheikh decided a decentralized ride-share platform built on blockchain tech could lose the middle player corporation controlling the relationship between riders and drivers.
All the examples outlined show why and how crypto technologies are being taken up by entrepreneurs, start-ups, and larger companies that want to incorporate its efficiencies and advantages.