One of the applications of blockchain technology – in the IoT segment – sees a vote of confidence as professionals expect the emergence of a new industry – blockchain IoT, or BIoT. Whether this particular application of DLT will amount to wide adoption or not, the IoT industry certainly is expected to see significant development and investments in 2018 and beyond.
Pick #1. 4 Technology Trends That Will Transform Our World in 2018
Trend #1. IoT becomes BIoT
Combining IoT with blockchain – or BIoT – ushers in a whole host of new services and businesses. For example, BIoT can be used to track shipments of pharmaceuticals and to create smart cities in which connected heating systems better controls energy use and connected traffic lights better manage rush hour.
In 2018, companies will begin to use Application Programming Interfaces, or software used to connect different databases and computer services. Combined with the blockchain Internet of things, it will be as easy to get data from sensors in a warehouse as accessing websites on our mobile phones. When manufacturers, retailers, regulators, and transportation companies have real-time data from sensors embedded on products, trucks, and ships, everyone in the distribution chain can benefit from insights that they were previously unable to get. With BIoT, companies and consumers can also be assured that their most valuable data on the blockchain cannot be hacked.
Pick #2. FinTech Pioneer Sees Money in the Masses (China)
Caixin: What are the most promising FinTech trends over the next decade?
Tang Ning (Founder & CEO of financial conglomerate CreditEase): We see small business lending being a key area of growth. In the past 10 years, creative lending models have done a good job at serving individuals, but there is much more to be done for small businesses.
Another area of growth we see is digital wealth management for the mass affluent investor base, another group that has been underserved. Today, investments in the capital market tend to be speculative, and the investment horizon is short, which is not in line with long-term value creation. This is detrimental to people in an increasingly aging society. With this kind of investment attitude, investors will not be able to meet their financial goals for retirement several decades down the road.
We also see the emergence of insurance tech. With the development of technology, we can match thousands of insurance products with business and consumer needs, a task that machines can carry out much more effectively than human insurance agents.
Pick #3. ICO to Build Next-Generation AI Raises $36 Million in 60 Seconds
SingularityNET aims to create a decentralized marketplace of AIs, where each AI can interact with one another (and pay one another) as needed to solve customers’ problems. Founder Ben Goertzel gave an example:
“If you need a document summarized, as a user you can put a request into SingularityNet…
You may get bids from 20 different document summary nodes and you may choose one with the right balance of reputation and price.
But now that document summary node if it hits something in the document it can’t deal with, it can outsource that. If the document summary node that you’re paying hits an embedded video, it can outsource that to a video summarizing node and it can then pay it some fraction of the money it was paid. Or, if it sees a quote in Russian, it can outsource that to a Russian to English translation node that can do that translation, then send it back to the document summary node.”