Blockchain in transportation

Impact of Blockchain in Transportation Industry

Blockchain continues to remain a buzzword in technology circles. In the past couple of years, however, it started to find its practical implementation as well. The companies providing Blockchain and the ones incorporating it remained highly successful. Logistics and transportation industry is one of the primary beneficiaries with major players taking part.

This article reveals the ways in which Blockchain in transportation would be very fruitful. Later, it shares some of the notable case studies reflecting the degree of success. The following brief introduction to the technology is optional.

What is Blockchain Technology?

Unlike the widespread belief, Blockchain is not merely the alternative for traditional money transaction schemes. Instead, it is a platform using which businesses can replace the traditional methods of online payments. The replacement of these methods is only a use case of Blockchain. The technology has the potential to entirely redefine transport management for increasing efficiency, reducing operational time, and augmenting the profit margins.

Blockchain uses the concept of distributed ledger. In essence, the information is stored in a series of virtual blocks. Each new block connects to the previous one with a cryptographic hash. Apart from hash, every block contains transaction data along with timestamp to ensure chronological order of chain.

The data stored in blocks is immutable. This implies that the data once updated on a block cannot be changed. Thus, each transaction gets stored in a separate block whose content are not modifiable. SHA-256 is one of the most common hashing schemes.

The immutability feature follows from the fact that the longest blockchain is the most valid one. This longest change rule ensures that any individual trying to fork the chain somewhere in the middle and connecting it to another chain would have smaller resultant chain. Thus, the preference would still be given to longest chain.

Besides, any new chain with same transactional data would still be invalid because the hash ID would not be recognized by rest of the nodes. Therefore, it is practically impossible to tamper the details on blocks making Blockchain technology an impregnable one.

Blockchain in transportation and logistics

Although the possibilities are unbounded when it comes to applying Blockchain in transportation industry, yet following are some of the use cases which have already been proved successful.

Instant Payment Verification

Transaction in cryptocurrency is one of the many use cases of Blockchain. Bitcoin presents an instance. Unlike traditional banking where transactions are monitored centrally, Bitcoin is distributed. Each of the users with transaction records in a chain is able to view each block containing transaction details.

The sender can use blockchain as a proof that transaction was made while receiver can verify if the transaction is valid or not. In contrast, the traditional business method often runs in monetary disputes. Research indicates that up to $140 billion worth of payments disputes hit transportation industry every day.

Apart from verification of transaction, the fault tolerance ability ensures that the Blockchain never goes down. If one of the nodes with access to Blockchain is unavailable, the blocks are still accessible from rest of the nodes. The only way that a payment remains unverified at a given time would be the event where each node goes down, which is close to impossible.

Smart Contracts with Blockchain

It takes days and, at times, months to complete payments and the associated paper work in a transaction. Companies have to involve third party contractors who act as middlemen in streamlining the transaction process. The cost of operations surges further when acquire these middlemen.

Smart contracts eliminate the requirement to keep third parties and automate the process of payments. Both parties including sender and receiver prefix the terms for transaction and program the Blockchain in such a way that payments are performed as soon as receiving party receives the shipment.

Smart contracts are successful because both parties have an increased level of trust through this transparent transaction scheme. Each operation progresses instantaneously since immutable ledger denies any tampering and, hence completing the task without delays at any point.

Goods Tracking

One of the most crucial applications of Blockchain technology in transportation is the ability that it provides to track goods. In a traditional setting, counterfeiting of products is very common because retailers and end users are unable to verify the authenticity of items. Drug counterfeiting alone is inflicting a loss of over $200 billion annually to pharmaceutical industry.

Research reveals that 3.16% of total drugs produced are counterfeited resulting in substandard products. Furthermore, the reports from Asia, are more alarming with India alone having 25% of counterfeited drugs.
The application of Blockchain allows retailers and users to verify the origin of a drug. Since the original manufacturer develops its unique hash, the regulators can identify if a product belongs to original manufacturer or not.

Food safety is one of the chief concerns in the world today. The United States alone suffers $15.6 billion loss due to foodborne diseases. Like drugs, Blockchain helps consumers in tracing the origin of three meals they take each day.

Also Read: Application of Blockchain Technology in Healthcare

Inefficiency in Load Management

One of the biggest challenges in trucking industry is to make the appropriate number of trucks available for distribution of goods. Fleet owners are frequently running into losses as most of the space remains empty in some trucks whereas others run out of space. As per American trucking Association, 90 percent of the worldwide trucking companies have six trucks or fewer. This problem results in either empty or partially-filled containers of trucks.

Blockchain can resolve this challenge by creating an excessive amount of trust among carriers and shippers. Besides, the trucking companies can collaborate with each other as well to develop a mutually beneficial relationship. The growing number of members of Blockchain in Transport Alliance (BiTA) is a highly encouraging factor and reflects that Blockchain will have a crucial say in future trucking.

Notable Case Studies for Blockchain in Transportation Industry

Although Blockchain is still in its rudimentary stages, yet a number of companies of all sizes is starting to implement the technology. Three of the most notable case studies are as under.

Walmart

In collaboration with IBM, Walmart is revolutionizing its supply chain management. The retail giant made essential for its suppliers to push each transactions on Blockchain. This practice creates an incredible amount of transparency, enabling consumers to verify the origin of each purchased item.

Previously, the company had to wait for seven days to verify the origin in case any doubt occurred regarding the authenticity of a retail product. In one such events where unhygienic lettuce resulted in a disease outbreak, the subsequent investigation took months before experts could trace the origin of problem. The incorporation of Blockchain reduced the time significantly to only 2.2 seconds.

TradeLens

This Blockchain solution developed by IBM in collaboration with Maersk – world’s leading shipping company – is providing a transaction platform for shippers and carriers. According to Maersk official reports, more than 100 supply chain operators are using this platform.

This Blockchain platform is one of its types and its success indicates that such solutions offer huge business opportunities. TradeLens is currently inviting large-scale shippers. Any investment in Blockchain for small scale businesses would be highly effective.

Batavia

It is a collaboration of five banks with a technological support from IBM resulting in a revamp of global trade finance. Batavia enables an automated and highly transparent transaction records for transportation through land, air, and sea routes. Besides assisting business owners and banks, Batavia is also helping insurance agents, operators, and consumers in eliminating the tedious and time consuming paper work.

What are you trying to accomplish?

Do you wish to take the leverage of Blockchain for your business? Is there a Blockchain-based startup idea in your mind? Mob Inspire is helping entrepreneurs in establishing startups for over a decade. Besides, our experts assist businesses in restructuring their corporate architecture, mobility, and tech infrastructure. Contact us today with your business problem and we will assist you in effectively solving it.

Blockchain technology in healthcare

Application of Blockchain Technology in Healthcare

The vulnerabilities of traditional database systems resulted in a decade of unending data breaches and the consequent financial losses. Fortunately, blockchain has emerged as a successful technology in ensuring data security. With an impressive CAGR of 64%, blockchain technology in healthcare is to set to reach $5.6 billion of market value by 2025.

What is blockchain technology?

Initially emerged as an alternative for traditional online payment methods, blockchain brings excessive transparency and security in data storage. This technology provides a way to store data in a dynamic collection of blocks. Each new block connects to the previous one making an unending chain.

Each stakeholder with access to the chain can view the information stored in blocks. However, information is immutable. In essence, the data in blocks is represented by hashes which disallow modifications. Thus, unlike traditional databases in hospitals, banks, and other institutions, there is no centralized authority in the blockchain.

Although blockchain can also be public, as in the case of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, yet healthcare requires private blockchain. In this approach, the blocks are accessible to only a limited number of people and groups associated with the department. Every node in the chain takes part in decision making. Thus, a modification in any block will require approval from all nodes.

Another factor making blockchain crucial for healthcare is its high degree of fault tolerance. Since this information storage scheme follows distributed rather than a centralized approach, the information will be accessible even if multiple nodes are down or unavailable.

Some businesses are also trying to utilize blockchain as an analytics platform and to address large storage issues. However, the technology proved its mettle the most in ensuring data security since its advent in 2009.

Use of Blockchain Technology in Healthcare

Blockchain is a horizontal innovation technology which implies that it is applicable in many disparate industries. Logistics and delivery industry and banking sector are a couple of examples. However, healthcare is one of the top beneficiaries of this technology.

Prevention of Drug Counterfeiting

Counterfeiting is at the core of issues regarding healthcare in general and pharmaceutical industry in particular. This illegal market is generating revenue of over $200 billion a year. Fake drugs are not only causing a massive financial loss to registered drug manufacturers.

It is also wreaking havoc with the public’s health. WHO confirms that 15-20% of fake drugs lack either correct constituents or appropriate percentage of ingredients.

The application of blockchain is significant in drug traceability because it eliminates every possibility of data tampering. The technology allows drug manufacturers to generate an immutable hash.

This unique hash ID enables retailers, and hence patients, to distinguish the original product from counterfeited ones. Thus, a blockchain dedicated to drug manufacturers can serve as a certificate of legitimation for pharmaceutical companies.

Patient Data: Management and Processing

The arrival of electronic patient record (EPR) two decades back apparently brought great relief to healthcare departments. However, hackers soon started to exploit the vulnerabilities in these centralized systems.

The ransomware attacks of May 2017 fueled the need for blockchain technology in the healthcare industry. This intrusion managed to encrypt and modify millions of records in over 150 countries.

Consequently, the national health services (NHS) of the UK alone suffered approximately £92 million. With such humongous losses, the governments are ensuring to make quick and flexible blockchain regulations.

Blockchain technology in healthcare enables practitioners to store data in blocks and associated a hash ID with it. This ID allows easy retrieval of data and makes the block tamperproof.

One of the most attractive features of block technology in healthcare is the transparency of records. Patients decide about who should view personal information. Moreover, the authorized individuals cannot share the data with anyone sans permission from the patient.

Permissions for Clinical Trials

Research and practical implementations are part and parcel of healthcare. All of the medical breakthroughs would have been impossible if experiments of drugs on humans were disallowed. The return on investment of manufacturing companies depends on the outcome of experimentation. Thus, many companies tilt the outcome in their favor by manipulating with records.

Blockchain prevents such manipulations. It uses smart contracts to sanction the permission for acquiring patient’s record or using a patient for experimentation. Since blockchain is a network of participating computers, one cannot change any dataset without the consent of majority of nodes in the network. This network also includes patient and healthcare regulators.

Studies indicate that the percentage of unreported clinical trials in Europe was as high as 90%. Blockchain limits the access to retrieval and modification of data. Only the authorized personnel can access while others can request for gaining permission.

Simplifying Telemedicine

Patients demonstrate trust deficit while dealing with the traditional healthcare system. They often complain of getting surcharged and lengthy procedure to meet prerequisites.

Blockchain addresses this challenge by providing the ability to generate smart contracts. This term often misleads because such a contract is not a digital document. Instead, it defines a code which suggests the terms of interaction and data use between various stakeholders.

Explore Blockchain Solutions by Mob inspire

The enforcement of smart contracts depends on the consensus of majority of stakeholders. Therefore, a contract comes into practice as soon as more than 50% of authorized users of blockchain agree and terms.

Blockchain healthcare startups including Zenome and HIT Foundation provide smart contracts to legitimize the process of research using patient’s history.

Blockchain for Your Business

Benefits of blockchain technology in healthcare are evident from both business value and facilitation of patients. The factors of transparency and excessive data security make it inevitable for health industry.

This is why governments are actively participating in developing a regulatory framework. The regulations for blockchain are far less rigid so that more entrepreneurs can be encouraged to invest in this sector.

Mob Inspire is assisting companies for over a decade in streamlining their businesses. We carry the privilege of successfully growing multiple startups and pulling struggling enterprises out of crises. Contact us today so that we can discuss the opportunities of growing together.