Now it gets serious: How Facebook, Nike and Samsung launch the second wave of blockchain adaptation
So far, most corporate messages have been similar to Blockchain adaptation. Most pilot projects were carried out on private blockchains. Typical use cases are the tracking of supply chains, the settlement of securities transactions or the execution of smart contracts to make processes more efficient. Now a second wave of corporate blockchain use cases is approaching us. Why this is more of a tsunami and affects each and every one of us directly.
The previous blockchain projects of major banks, energy service providers or logistics companies were primarily aimed at optimizing their own infrastructure and value chain. That’s why many of these companies have joined forces to conduct stakeholder transactions and make them more efficient using blockchain features. For the private end customer it was practically never, but above all about their own background processes.
Currently, however, a second wave of corporate applications is approaching us. This time the end customer is in the foreground. It’s about concrete blockchain services and cryptocurrencies for the end user and not for the company’s own value chain – Blockchain goes B2C. The corporations that bring about this change are, however, in part new players whose business model deviates significantly from the previous blockchain pioneers.
Facebook, Samsung and Nike get into starting position
What do Facebook, Samsung and Nike have in common? All three companies have a two-digit percentage of the world’s total population as customers. Also, blockchain strategies are emerging in all three groups. Among other things, the following news has been in focus in recent weeks:
- Facebook is working on its own cryptocurrency and blockchain infrastructure.
- Samsung integrates dApps and an Ether Wallet in the new smartphone Samsung Galaxy S10.
- Insider sources report that Samsung is working on Blockchain. Own token not excluded.
- Nike signs a patent for crypto-related goods and services under the name CRYPTOKICKS.
There were similar news and rumors from corporate competitors such as Apple or LG, whose customer segment is similarly widespread. Crucial here is that all groups have an extremely large number of customers to private consumers and therefore their ecosystem can use particularly well for block chain transactions with end customers. The customer is actively involved in the new transaction infrastructure when, for example, he handles tokens using a smartphone dApp. Even though Facebook and Nike are still thinking about how their crypto services will look in the future, there are obvious use cases.
The blockchain strategy of the corporations
Unlike crypto start-ups, these players already have hundreds of millions of customers around the world. As a result, they are able to overstrain their crypto services in their business model slowly and without overstraining their customers or users. The old “non-blockchain model” remains in place, while additionally providing crypto-related services, with proven customer benefit. Of course, customers will continue to be able to pay with Euro, US Dollars & Co. On the other hand, if they convert to the crypto currencies of the corporations, they will be rewarded with advantages. Just as Apple’s new credit card users, the Apple Card, will receive cashback on payment transactions, as well as incentivize transactions with what may be Facebook, Samsung, or Nike Coin in the future.
In this way, corporations can not only save enormous costs, but also offer additional services that were previously reserved for other companies or industries. Just as Apple is pushing into the banking business, there are many indications that Facebook also wants to become a global bank. Accordingly, it is not surprising that Facebook wants to focus even more on the Messenger business with its services WhatsApp and Instagram. With a dedicated coin, banking services such as sending money or acquiring financial products and loans can be better reflected in their own ecosystem. Data bats could thus increasingly turn away from banks and other infrastructure service providers.
The fashion industry is conquering the digital space
Meanwhile, more and more “virtual” fashion models are establishing themselves, posing mainly on Instagram with branded clothing. One of the best-known virtual models is Lil Miquela, who has over 1.5 million followers on Instragram and regularly advertises various fashion brands. Besides Gucci or Diesel, Nike is also there. But matching the digital models, there are also first fashion labels, such as the Digital Collection by Carlings, which design virtual clothes for the digital space. For the time being for the social media profile and in the future for your own avatar in virtual reality, everyone will have a digital wardrobe in just a few years. What sounds like gimmicks and science fiction at the moment is the blockchain use cases of the not so distant future. The fashion and lifestyle industry, along with the Silicon Valley platform giants, is the largest contributor to wide-format crypto adaptation.
The Cryptokicks patent from Nike
For example, in the Nike patent document to Cryptokicks, various crypto-related services are covered by the patent application. Among other things: crypto-wallets and crypto applications for collectibles, crypto art and application tokens. There is also talk of tokens for an online community. Accordingly, it is conceivable that, for example, buyers of Nike sneakers get an incentive token, which in turn entitles to extra services and includes, for example, credits and discounts. In addition to various incentive models for buyers and social media influencers, digital collectibles and digital twins will also become an important component of the industry via blockchain economics.
So if you buy Nike sneaker, could also get a digital version of his shoes, which can be worn in the virtual world. To ensure copy protection of digital items, a blockchain solution is needed again. After all, Nike has an interest in a limited edition of non-digital sneaker copies appearing in the virtual world. The solution to the double-spending problem – Bitcoin’s right to exist – also comes into play here.
This can not only prevent unauthorized duplication, but also a tradability of digital collectibles are made possible. Industry-specific blockchains can be used to set up a new transaction economy. This creates a new market for digital goods, which in turn allows a new dimension of interaction between companies, influencers and end consumers. First start-ups such as the Berlin-based company LUKSO are already working on corresponding blockchain solutions that will be able to map such transactions in the future
The supposed corporate decentralization
However, consumers should distinguish between really decentralized blockchain solutions, as they try to implement individual crypto start-ups, and corporate blockchain solutions. Decentralization at Facebook, Samsung, Nike & Co. means, above all, decentralization in one’s own ecosystem or in one’s own value chain. The ideal blockchain models of Internet platforms and corporations will remain centralized or at least consortium-oriented for the foreseeable future. Finally, a truly decentralized and open solution based on Bitcoin would undermine its own business model.