On the official website, they proudly declare that “THE WORLD IS NOW OPEN FOR BUSINESS”. Their mission statement invokes the Idealism of wanting to change the world of business and the way the world conducts its financial transactions.
We are on a mission to build a more open, accessible, and fair financial future, one piece of software at a time. Our technology is revolutionizing the financial services industry by empowering millions across the globe to authenticate and transact immediately and without costly intermediaries.
Blockchain prides themselves as the world’s leading software platform for digital assets. Stating that they offer the largest production block chain platform in the world, they have posited that they are using modern technology to build a radically better financial system.
But! It is not just all about finance. Looking closely at the Blockchain technology, experts have found other use for the platforms’ network and this is the real revolution – Blockchain as a service (BaaS).
The Blockchain technology is nested on a distributed database that maintains a continuously growing list of ordered records called blocks. Each block contains a timestamp and links to a previous block. By design, the data on Blockchains can not be modified, the data in a block cannot be altered retroactively. By making use of a peer-to-peer network and a distributed time stamping server, a Blockchain database can be managed autonomously. Blockchains are an open and distributed ledger that can record transactions between two parties efficiently and store these records in a verifiable and permanent way. Blockchain can also be programmed to trigger transactions automatically.
The prospect of BaaS is reinforced with the investment in the technology and adoption by two of the world’s major IT giants. Microsoft has Azure and IBM, Bluemix.
BUT WHAT IS BaaS?
Since Blockchains are secure by design and an example of a distributed computing system with high fault tolerance, decentralized consensus can therefore be achieved with a Blockchain. This feature makes Blockchains suitable for application in the performance of other functions such as recording of events, maintaining medical records, and other records’ management activities. This is because it has the capacity of tracking other types of data in private Blockchain networks in addition to money. In layman terms, the interconnectivity of the blocks and the ability to maintain data integrity opens a window of limitless opportunity for use of the platform/technology.
Microsoft and ConsenSys collaborated to create Ethereum Blockchain as a service (EBaaS) on Microsoft Azure in November 2015. The service is aimed at empowering partners and developers to experiment with distributed ledger technology by offering them “a single-click, cloud-based Blockchain developer environment.”
IBM is the biggest backer of BaaS with their collaboration with Linux on their Hyperledger Project. This is to help developers build secure distributed ledgers that can be used to exchange anything of value. IBM runs it’s BaaS on its open standards cloud applications platform Bluemix.
BaaS is gradually gaining traction as not only banks but also large corporations in other sectors are also exploring the opportunities that BaaS holds.