Preface – This post is part of the Blockchain Basics series.
Table of Contents
Business players have already started to work on different scenarios where blockchain can be utilized. Here we will discuss some of the Blockchain Use Cases. To make this part of Use Cases more effective and simple, we will initially discuss the problem statement, current scenario and then the effective blockchain based solution.
Use Case 1: Electricity Meter
Effective management of energy sector such that grids are balanced, and consumers are paying for what they get and at the same time power supplier/operator are transmitting the amount they have been paid for.
The power distribution in India is a very typical process. The power generators transmit power to grids and these grids supply the powers at home. These grids have local operators who collect data regarding power use, which is later used by operators to generate electricity bills. Once paid, they pay to the power generator. As we can already see the data regarding power consumption is being maintained at different location and individually at homes. If the local operator partners with users, then they can manipulate the consumption data. Also, there is no track of how much power is currently being used and where it is being used. Does anyone using, who is not authorized to use? Should the power to grid be increased or decreased to keep it stable?
To keep the power supply stable, to avoid unauthenticated use of power supply and to curb the corruption from consumption data, a blockchain can be implemented in such a way that it keeps track of power from power generator to supplier, from local operator to end user. In this way supplier will get to know if the energy supply is under theft or not. Power generator will get to know the amount of electricity required to keep the grid stable. The users will be paying exactly the amount they have used. The role of local operator can be eliminated, hence making the energy enterprise corruption free.
Use Case 2: Background check system
After induction of an employee in public or private sector, a background check needs to be conducted to check if the employee is authentic or not.
Several private organizations are there to help other enterprises to conduct background check. Government sector have their entirely different unit and employees to conduct background check. If the same employee switches job, the background check is repeated. Also, in case of passport registration, a background check with police level verification is conducted. These multiple background checks of same employee mean, double spending and waste of time, money and resources.
At every level of education, a background check is done at basic level to check if certificates are valid or not. These can be put into a blockchain. Later, during passport verification, the validation can be maintained into blockchain. If in a condition, a separate background is done, that too will be maintained in the blockchain. Hence, a single data to check if the person is authentic can be maintained via blockchain. Also, power to share data can be given to the user/employee itself.
Use Case 3: Supply Chain (Online shipment)
Online shopping is easier to access but the authenticity of the product needs to be verified.
Multiple online shopping websites are there. All websites have multiple vendors. These vendors too depend upon other vendors for supply. Once an item is ordered online, these vendors send that items to the user. These items can be a copy of original and this counterfeit practice can be conducted from any of the vendors or even by the delivery unit.
The goal of this use case is to take the authentic item from the manufacturer unit and deliver the same to the customer. In doing so, a blockchain needs to be constructed in such a way that each product is saved on blockchain with a unique ID at the manufacturer unit itself, the product data need to be updated based on its location (at which vendor the product has reached) and also if it is being delivered to the customer. If a fake product is delivered to a customer, the customer can track if the unique ID maintained upon the item is there in the blockchain or not, and if it is there, does its location is correct or not. In this way a blockchain will ensure original product delivery irrespective of vendors.
We have discussed some of the use cases of blockchain; likewise, multiple scenarios are there where we can implement a blockchain. To explore more, read blockchain use cases by IBM here.