The future of blockchain technology is looking bright, despite looking a bit uncertain. Over the past year, there has been a growing interest in the technology, but still very few projects coming to fruition. Looking ahead to 2017, some things will need to change, as the initial blockchain hype is over.
Can 2017 Become The Year of Blockchain Technology?
So far, there is no lack of excitement when it comes to blockchain technologies. A lot of capital has been pumped into projects and startups exploring this concept. However, the initial hype is pretty much over, and the time has to show some results. Some experts predict 2017 will be the year of “practicality” for blockchain.
Integrating this technology into existing systems will be one of the main challenges for 2017. There is a growing interest from financial institutions to do so, however. It is important to keep in mind this goes much further than just using blockchain for the internal structure. Unless multiple parties embrace this technology in the same sector, there is little point in experimenting with it. The year 2017 may kick off this integration process, although it won’t be completed for a few more years.
Although most financial institutions focus on private blockchains, the technology is still valid. Through strategic partnerships such as the R3 Consortium, innovation can thrive. Moreover, multiple parties will be willing to integrate the technology into their operations. Maybe we will even see the open blockchain standard being embraced, but for now, that is just an idyllic dream.
Real-world applications are direly needed to put the blockchain on the map. The time of hit and miss is over, although there will still be a large focus on creating new proofs of concept. The year 2017 will need to deliver on these real-world applications. For this, we will need to look well beyond the financial space, as that process is moving at a snail’s pace right now.
At the same time, next year will probably see even more competition among blockchain providers. That is never a bad thing, regardless of which standard they prefer to use. Competition drives innovation, from which both enterprises and consumers will reap the rewards. It would be an interesting time to develop APIs to access blockchain services for mainstream real-world usage; that much is certain.
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