IBM made a range of announcements today promising to rapidly advance the use of distributed ledger technology across multiple industries around the world. The news follows the earlier Japan Exchange Group (JPX) announcement that the trading venue will start conducting proof of concept on distributed ledger technology with the help of IBM Japan.
IBM says new blockchain services on its cloud will help create and manage blockchain networks to power a new class of distributed ledger applications. Using IBM’s new blockchain services available on Bluemix, developers can access fully integrated DevOps tools for creating, deploying, running and monitoring blockchain applications on the IBM Cloud. Blockchain applications can also access existing transactions on distributed servers and z Systems through APIs to support new payment, settlement, supply chain and business processes.
Using its Watson IoT Platform, IBM will make it possible for information from devices such as RFID-based locations, barcode-scan events, or device-reported data to be used with IBM’s Blockchain. Devices will be able to communicate to blockchain-based ledgers to update or validate smart contracts. For example, as an IoT-connected package moves along multiple distribution points, the package location and temperature information could be updated on a blockchain. This allows parties to share information and the status of the package as it moves among multiple parties to ensure the terms of a contract are met.
Finally, to help accelerate the design and development of blockchain applications, IBM Garages will open in London, New York, Singapore and Tokyo to enable IBM experts to collaborate with developers on the design and implementation of blockchain for business. IBM Global Business Services will also expand its blockchain consulting practice for clients in banking and financial services and logistics. IBM Interactive Experience will also engage clients to co-design new use cases for blockchain in more than 25 IBM Studios around the globe.
“In just a few short months, IBM’s vision for making blockchain a powerful new business solution across multiple industries is becoming a reality as our clients begin piloting innovative new code, services and z Systems optimized for distributed ledgers,” said Arvind Krishna, Senior Vice President, IBM Research. “These advancements are making it easier for developers to move from understanding the potential of blockchain, to actually using it to change their business processes in powerful new ways.”