The Blockchain-Enabled Intelligent IoT Economy


VIII. Conclusions

As you might have noticed, the edges of the impact of one technology on the others and vice-versa often blur, and this is not by chance but an inevitable consequence of technologies that are born and developed to create an “intelligence flywheel.

In addition to unlocking a set of new technological scenarios, the integration of blockchain, IoT and AI has generated new powerful business models. The shift from product to service and ownership to access is the key to understand the magnitude of the changes in the tech ecosystem. Even more radically, product-as-a-service and product-sharing business models are emerging and winning in almost every markets, leaving the manufacturer in charge of the ownership as well as maintaining the full responsibility of the product and service operation.

It is counterintuitive and even a bit absurd, if you think about it, that the surge in the hardware industry is in fact shifting the attention toward a “servitization” model (Porter and Heppelmann, 2014), which clearly makes more sense where the cost of service is a significant part of the greater cost of ownership (that is the case in the current technology landscape).

This integration does not come without issues, as we have seen, both technical and commercial, as much as of design. Data democratization may also soon erode the data moat barrier AI companies are nowadays building their empires on. Software and algorithms are no longer private but rather open-source. Computational power is now affordable and will be processed directly on-device. What does it all mean for the evolution of the industry? Who knows. I have no idea of how these phenomena will shape our businesses and lives, but I am sure that the changes will happen at an exponential rate.

References

Deloitte (2016). “Blockchain Enigma. Paradox. Opportunity”. White Paper.

Hawking, S. (2000). “Unified Theory Is Getting Closer”, Hawking Predicts. Interview in San Jose Mercury News; 23 Jan 2000. 29A.

Nakamoto, S. (2008). “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”. White Paper.

O’Dwyer, K. J., Malone, D. (2014). “Bitcoin mining and its energy footprint”. 25th IET Irish Signals & Systems Conference 2014 and 2014 China-Ireland International Conference on Information and Communications Technologies (ISSC 2014/CIICT 2014), Limerick, pp. 280–285.

Outlier Ventures (2017). “Blockchain-Enabled Convergence”. White Paper.

Outlier Ventures (2018). “The Convergence Ecosystem”. White Paper.

Porter, M. E., Heppelmann, J. E. (2014). “How Smart, Connected Products Are Transforming Competition”. Harvard Business Review, 92, 64–88.

Reyna, A., Martin, C., Chen, J., Soler, E., Diaz, M. (2018). “On blockchain and its integration with IoT. Challenges and opportunities”. Future Generation Computer Systems 88: 173–190.

Sasson, E. B., Chiesa, A., Garman, C., Green, M., Miers, I., Tromer, E., Virza, M. (2014). “Zerocash: Decentralized anonymous payments from bitcoin”. In Security and Privacy (SP), 2014 IEEE Symposium on, pp. 459–474.

Unicredit (2016). “Blockchain Technology and Applications from a Financial Perspective”. Technical Report.

Zyskind, G., Nathan, O., Pentland, A. (2015). “Enigma: Decentralized computation platform with guaranteed privacy”. arXiv:1506.03471.



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