The Week in Blockchain
Singaporean sovereign wealth fund, Vertex Ventures has announced it’s investing in the world’s largest crypto fund, Binance. The two are working to bring a fiat to crypto exchange to South East Asia.
Power Ledger has won a global technology competition run by Sir Richard Branson’s. The Western Australian startup will be offered investment by the Virgin Airlines CEO to bring their blockchain based idea to life.
Following Tether’s crash last week, the Winklevoss-backed stable coin Gemini has risen above the US$1.00 mark.
Phase two of the Ethereum Network
It was a big week for blockchain in Sydney with the ConsenSys event last week. Coincast spoke to Ethereum co-founder and ConsenSys Founder and CEO, Joe Lubin.
ConsenSys is working on a wide range of protocol-based open platforms, much like those existing on the Ethereum network. From the music industry to supply chains, ConsenSys are providing a space for blockchain projects to come to life.
Lubin also spoke of some exciting innovations coming to ConsenSys. Including the new journalism platform Civil, ConsenSys hopes to bring trust back into the news industry.
“If we’re going to govern with these new decentralised mechanisms we need good information,” Lubin explains. Through these initiatives, ConseSys is demonstrating how blockchain can be integrated into wider society.
As Ethereum moves into “phase two of its existence”, Lubin predicts that the network will begin to have an impact on consumers within the next year.
The rise and fall of the stable coin
Ranking in the top 100 of the most influential economists in the United Kingdom, Coincast spoke to Dr Garrick Hileman. His research into the crypto space and digital currencies has recently focused on stable coins.
Researching asset-backed, crypto-backed and algorithmic stable coins, Dr Hileman has found these digital currencies are proving popular among investors. This is especially those backed by an asset like the USD, which Dr Hileman believes offer greater trust.
“Over $350 million in venture capital has been raised by asset-backed stable coins. People are putting capital behind safer, more tested stable coin approaches,” Hileman explained.
In light of the crash of the Tether last week, Dr Hileman predicts that much of the funds drained from the coin went into currencies like Bitcoin instead.
All Eyes on Dubai
Crypto and blockchain leaders gathered from around the world to meet in Dubai, for The World Blockchain Summit.
Hosting government leaders, developers and investors, the conference focused on business and government applications for blockchain technology.
Coincast spoke to Tony Tran from Alfra-Enzo, who emphasised how blockchain needs to become accessible to the mainstream. On a mission to get blockchain to “resonate” with the public, Tran is attempting to tackle this issue head-on.
Dubai is already implementing blockchain in its financial and health sectors. With plans to establish the world’s first blockchain court, Dubai has big plans to bring the technology to the mainstream.
The Summit will round off the year in Amsterdam before its final destination in Saudi Arabia.
Blockchain Phones are Dialling in
With the first blockchain phonecall happening only a few weeks ago, many are now bracing for blockchain phones. Though Pundi X seems like the natural leader, CEO Zac Cheah explains the company won’t be releasing their own phone.
“Our ultimate aim is to let other manufacturers manufacture the phone,” Cheah explains. Their ecosystem f(x) will instead support those companies planning to release blockchain phones.
So who will be answering the call of the blockchain phone? One of the biggest contenders is the Exodus 1 phone, pioneered by tech-giant HTC. Among other features, the blockchain-powered phone will have inbuilt asset management software for cryptocurrency.
The only catch? The Exodus 1 can only be purchased with Bitcoin or Ethereum. That’s one way to stimulate mainstream crypto adoption.
Also tuning in to the call is SIRIN Labs. Their blockchain smartphone, Finney, will allow users to access a dApps store, will include its own SIRIN token and also have inbuilt cold storage.
Hello 5-day Home Loans
Named among Australia’s top 100 most influential women, Ruth Hatherley is creating waves with her newest venture. Homechain by Moneycatcha is offering customers home loans in as little as 5 days.
Impossible right? Homechain is doing just that by integrating the usually fragmented application process through the blockchain.
“Traditionally home loans are taking on average 42 days,” Hatherley explains. And through Homechain, customers can also expect to receive greater security through the blockchain.
With HSBC already on board, Homechain is excited to begin operating within the Australian market very soon.
Homechain is only one example of how blockchain is reimagining our financial sector. Hatherely expects “compliance and risk management” to be the two areas where blockchain will really make its mark in the next few years.
Projects to watch
The crypto startup dYdX is making headlines this week after raising US$10 million in investment. The company is developing financial software to cut out the third-party in money lending, to create decentralised exchanged.
Also grabbing attention is the scaling tool Salus. A tool created by Coinbase, Salus hopes to inject greater security into digital software.
BRAIN startup is using artificial intelligence to propel blockchain startups. Specialising in AI, internet, drone and blockchain companies, BRAIN is supporting others in the blockchain scene.
The Week Ahead
The New York Stock Exchange platform Bakkt is set to go live in December. It will be the first crypto-related offered of the Exchange.
In the world of conferences, many are waiting in anticipation for the Malta Blockchain Hackathon starting this week. Running from October 31st-November 2nd, the summit will include new tech developments, marketing and regulations on the agenda.
That’s it for Coincast TV this season. Tune in next season to hear about the latest in cryptocurrency news, blockchain updates and global fintech events at Coincast TV.
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Claire is a passionate researcher, writer and analytical thinker with an interest in strategy & technical topics such as blockchain and cryptocurrency.