Blockchain Development Use Cases in Industries

Blockchain technology is used in various industries today - beyond its initial financial scope. Find out how blockchain changes business, governance and global efficiency and why areas like finance, health care or even voting systems count on the technology.

Blockchain & Web3 developmentUPDATED ON March 5, 2024

Blockchain use cases

Initially developed for Bitcoin in 2009, blockchain technology has significantly evolved, impacting various industries beyond its initial financial use. It brought about a decentralized ledger system that securely logs transactions. Ethereum enhanced this feature in 2015 by introducing smart contracts, broadening blockchain’s applications from straightforward transactions to complex contract agreements.

Blockchain now supports many services like crypto trading and decentralized finance (DeFi) applications. It introduces new solutions and makes financial services accessible to those excluded by traditional systems. This blog post explores blockchain’s extensive uses, highlighting how it changes business, governance, and global efficiency. Critical areas like finance and healthcare use blockchain for more transparent supply chains, safer financial deals, and updated health records and voting systems.

 

Key Strengths of Blockchain to Benefit Businesses

Blockchain transforms how we manage data and conduct transactions in many sectors. It enhances security through end-to-end encryption and decentralized storage. It also provides greater transparency with a shared, immutable ledger.

In addition, it allows instant traceability, which helps verify the authenticity of products and the integrity of supply chains.

Blockchain increases efficiency and speed by making traditional processes digital and more streamlined. Furthermore, it introduces automation through smart contracts. These contracts automatically trigger actions when specific conditions are met.

These capabilities together allow businesses to improve their operational efficiency and security. They also enable the exploration of new trust and cooperation models. This opens up opportunities for innovation and growth across various sectors.

 

Blockchain Use Cases and Applications

Blockchain has many applications and use cases across a wide range of industries. Below, we describe several key use cases and applications in detail, highlighting the diverse potential of blockchain technology:

 

1. Cryptocurrencies

Initially developed for managing cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, the blockchain concept enables the secure and anonymous documentation of transactions. In addition to challenging traditional banking, blockchain enables financial institutions to utilize decentralized digital assets for their advantage. Banks have begun recognizing and supporting cryptocurrencies as financial assets.

Blockchain decentralizes and secures transactions independently of central banks, recording each transaction on a distributed ledger. The cryptographic security of these transactions guarantees their immutability and transparency, thus boosting the system’s trust and integrity.

Read our blog post on blockchain development to learn more about how transactions are recorded in blocks and how these blocks are “chained” together.

 

2. Supply Chain Management

Blockchain technology can document product manufacturing, transportation, and delivery from the supplier to the consumer, offering a tamper-proof historical record.

In supply chain and trade finance, blockchain platforms such as IBM’s Batavia, R3’s Marco Polo, digital trading networks from various banks, and Hong Kong’s trade finance platform streamline document verification to complete transactions in just minutes at a lower cost. This approach addresses the high inefficiency, fraud, and significant expenses associated with manual documentation, transforming the process into a highly efficient and secure system.

A prominent example of blockchain application in supply chain management is Walmart’s collaboration with IBM on the Food Trust Network. With this, Walmart tracks and traces the origin of food products in its supply chain. It enables Walmart to quickly isolate and manage food safety issues, such as contamination.

Through transparent monitoring of goods, blockchain technology can help to prevent substandard products (e.g., counterfeit, low-quality, contaminated) from entering the market.

 

3. Smart Contracts

Blockchain introduces smart contracts that record the terms of an agreement between two or more parties. These electronic agreements eliminate the need for intermediaries, reduce costs and bureaucratic delays, and prevent third-party interference. Smart contracts can revolutionize various aspects of daily life.

Similar to traditional contracts, smart contracts define an agreement through if-then conditions. These conditions based on deals between two or more parties are inscribed into the contract code, and actions are automatically triggered once conditions are met. Our dedicated blog post on smart contracts explains in detail how they work, what they can be used for, and how they are coded.

For instance, integrating blockchain with the Internet of Things (IoT) makes it possible to monitor compliance with contract terms automatically. In the case of a missed payment in a purchase agreement, the technology could even locate the debtor, showcasing the practical applications of this innovation. Here, you can find more use cases of smart contracts.

 

4. Digital Identity

Blockchain enables the creation of secure, tamper-proof digital identities, with some experts predicting that these blockchain-based IDs could one day replace traditional online usernames and passwords. Bitnation’s “Blockchain Emergency ID” initiative exemplifies this application by offering emergency digital IDs to immigrants and refugees when their physical documents are lost or confiscated.

The key feature of digital identities built on blockchain is their robust security system, which effectively prevents identity theft in the digital realm. It also showcases the technology’s capability to revolutionize identity verification online.

 

5. Voting Systems

Blockchain provides a transparent and secure solution for digital voting, tackling electronic voting challenges like compromised voter privacy, voter fraud, the high costs of outdated digital platforms, and transparency issues. Smart contracts and encryption within blockchain significantly increase voting process safety, enhance transparency, and safeguard voter privacy.

Blockchain-based voting utilizes the technology’s security features to allow voters to submit their choices online without revealing their identity. It ensures the integrity of the voting process by making each vote traceable to a unique ID, making tampering and forgery virtually impossible (see image below for illustration of the blockchain based voting process).

In the 2018 midterm elections, West Virginia launched a pilot project that enabled military and overseas voters to submit secure and anonymous votes using blockchain technology via a mobile app developed by Voatz. This initiative represented one of the first instances of blockchain application in a U.S. federal election to improve voting accessibility and security for citizens abroad.

Voting with blockchain

How individual votes can be immutably recorded on the blockchain and traced back.

 

6. Healthcare

Blockchain solves significant healthcare problems, like data fragmentation, interoperability, and security. It secures and decentralizes electronic health records (EHRs), patient consent, and drug tracking. These attributes allow for efficient sharing and verification of medical info among healthcare providers, pharmaceuticals, and patients. Blockchain also boosts health data security, ensures the integrity of clinical trials, and supports new reward systems with micropayments.

For example, blockchain improves drug traceability by securely recording each transaction in the pharmaceutical supply chain (see image below), ensuring the authenticity of medications, preventing counterfeits, and enhancing patient safety. Its transparent and immutable ledger allows for real-time visibility, efficient recalls, and regulatory compliance, building trust in the pharmaceutical supply chain.

MIT developed MedRec, a critical blockchain healthcare application that manages electronic health records securely. MedRec sets up a decentralized, tamper-proof database for medical data, giving secure, quick access to patients, doctors, and providers.

Healthcare supply chain with blockchain

Healthcare supply chain problems in traditional systems and solutions using blockchain.

 

7. Finance

Blockchain technology is revolutionizing the financial sector with diverse applications, including transaction facilitation with Bitcoin, crowdfunding innovations, SME financing, and financial securities management. Projects such as IBM’s Digital Trade Chain for SME international trade financing and initiatives to digitize and manage securities for unlisted companies showcase the versatility of blockchain.

Moreover, decentralized finance, or DeFi, utilizes blockchain technology to provide financial services outside the boundaries of conventional banking. Blockchain and smart contracts enable DeFi applications to develop protocols with greater openness, interoperability, and transparency. Through DeFi, users can lend, borrow, and trade in a secure, transparent environment without intermediaries.

 

Case Study Ajna

Ajna, a protocol based on Ethereum, illustrates the potential of DeFi by offering a Web3 frontend for crypto lending and borrowing. This decentralized protocol showcases how blockchain can make financial services more accessible, secure, and efficient. With a small development team and a project size of USD 475k, Ajna demonstrates a practical approach to DeFi solutions.

For a deeper dive into Ajna’s development and impact, see the Krusche & Company case study. Ajna’s success emphasizes DeFi’s role in revolutionizing finance through decentralization.

 

8. Real Estate

Blockchain improves the real estate industry by addressing slow transactions, administrative misunderstandings, and trust deficits among buyers, sellers, and intermediaries. Implementing a blockchain-based real estate system enables the automation of routine tasks and contracts, ensures transparent listing and data tracking, and cuts costs.

Moreover, blockchain introduces innovative business models to real estate, enabling fractional ownership of assets that are traditionally hard to share, digitizing contracts to speed up transactions, and facilitating real estate crowdfunding through tokenization, among other advancements.

For example, Propy is a blockchain-based platform revolutionizing real estate transactions by enabling secure, seamless online processes from listing to closing. Utilizing smart contracts ensures transparency and reduces fraud.

 

9. Arts

NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are making waves in art, with technology-enabled artworks selling for millions of dollars at auctions. This innovation has introduced the concept of crypto art and digital collectibles, attracting artists, musicians, and influencers to leverage the technology for higher earnings from their original and unique creations. NFTs serve various purposes, from representing digital art and music to acting as authentication proofs for tangible assets like artwork and jewelry.

 

10. Gaming

As crypto became more prominent in payments and finance, developers explored blockchain gaming to address economic manipulation by gaming companies, solve payment issues, prevent potential shutdowns, and correct unbalanced gameplay. Blockchain in gaming supports open-source, distributed, and transparent networks, enabling features like actual asset ownership, consensus-driven updates, decentralized marketplaces, and streamlined tokens.

CryptoKitties is one of the first popular blockchain games. It lets users collect and breed digital cats on the Ethereum blockchain.

 

11. Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC)

The CBDC represents a significant advancement in the digital transformation of money, using blockchain technology to deliver benefits for retail and wholesale applications. Central banks support CBDCs as digital assets, providing a secure and efficient mechanism for banks, institutions, and individuals to execute payments and settle transactions. With over 70% of central banks investigating CBDCs, they have the potential to simplify reconciliation processes, broaden financial access, drive digital innovation, and refine monetary policy.

Blockchain platforms, like Ethereum, offer vital advantages within the CBDC ecosystem, such as trust in the system, programmability, data availability, and innovation. By integrating this technology, central banks can maintain control while providing privacy and independence to users.

 

12. Media and Entertainment

Blockchain has the potential to transform the media and entertainment industry. It can safeguard intellectual property, cut out intermediaries, and enable novel payment models. Creators can protect their content, interact directly with consumers, and automate royalty payments. These benefits foster a more equitable and efficient content distribution and monetization ecosystem.

 

Blockchain Development Services

Are you inspired by the above examples of use cases or do you see potential to leverage your business to new heights using blockchain technology? We’d love to discuss the possibilities to integrate blockchain in your upcoming projects.

Based in Munich, K&C, an IT outsourcing company, boasts nearly 25 years of experience in software development, with a portfolio that features projects in blockchain technology development.

K&C blockchain development services.

Benefit from reduced costs, increased flexibility, and access to top-notch tech talent through nearshore IT outsourcing in Eastern Europe via a reputable partner.

Discover more about our flexible service models here.