Blockchain and Smart homes might be the next big thing. With the real estate industry continually on the move, the smart home industry is growing rapidly as the penetration of Internet of Things (IoT) devices into the household increases. Future smart home solutions will integrate an ecosystem of customer-facing services ranging from home security and energy management to healthcare.
Progress toward this goal is currently hindered by consumer concerns over data security and protection, as well as a lack of standards and interoperability between devices on the market. Leaders in the smart home industry are beginning to experiment with blockchain and distributed ledger technologies (DLTs), which could improve data security and provide a common platform to support smart devices and integrative applications.
Blockchain has the potential to create new value in the smart home market if three crucial areas are addressed: ease of deployment, interoperability, and scalability. However, the technology is immature and current iterations have limitations in each area. Many obstacles must be overcome before a blockchain network can support the smart home.
In a Forbes interview with Imad Labbadi, Founder and CEO of VeCap GMBH, a new blockchain startup that specializes in the delivery of smart homes. Imad had this to say about the smart homes industry:
“In the next few years, Blockchain technology will change the world as we know it now. The number of blockchain investments and activities is increasing sharply. This is most clearly reflected in the various proofs-of-concept of Blockchain companies. However, it will take some time before some of these projects are ready to be officially launched on the market. However, already today the advantages of the blockchain-technology for companies as well as governments cannot be denied”.
The cryptocurrency market has once again taken a nosedive in the past weeks. Asked if he thought that there would be a recovery at some point or would there be a continued decline? Labbadi replied that it was common for every industry to have its ups and downs. He continued by saying that the market must first free itself of all the garbage and that projects were needed that could realistically connect to the real market and offer a foreseeable added value. This would allow a person who was not familiar with blockchain technology to become involved.
When asked what his personal opinion on the IOT was and how blockchain and the IOT would merge, Labbadi replied that the IOT itself was fascinating and exciting, offering both enormous potential and challenges which would be overcome. He said that one of the greatest challenges of the IoT was a Security ecosystem that encompassed all fields of IoT architecture. He went on to state that addressing the security issue in the IoT was of paramount importance for future development. This was exactly where the connection of Blockchain came into a decentral approach for IoT networking which would close the major security gaps, introducing a standardized peer to peer communication model which would process millions of transactions between devices.
He stated that the advantage of reducing the cost of installing and maintaining large centralized data centres prevented a failure of a single node in a network from causing the entire network to fail and that Blockchain technology had become an essential part of innovation for many. He concluded by saying that it offered the opportunity to develop new business models and, in addition, recorded transactions or any digital interaction securely, transparently, fail-safe, auditable and efficiently. According to him, the blockchain technology was the missing link which would solve data protection and reliability problems as well as security gaps in the IoT.
And when he was asked if the VeCap product was a step forward into what the smart homes industry can do, he said, “I certainly think so, we ourselves have to constantly improve our product and adapt it to the development of the IoT and Blockchain market. Our product will be the first of its kind to implement the IoT and Blockchain link, in a segment that already has many security problems and we want to be the ones to solve them. As soon as we have achieved that and we will, it will significantly advance the smart home market and also the IoT market. This is also the reason why we chose Smart home as our project. We wanted to achieve something that is different from others in the real market and can be realized in the foreseeable future and solve an already existing problem. This way we not only create an interesting project for our community but also a real one. This is also the reason why we have specialized in smart home and smart offices and that time will come when it will be necessary to specialize to achieve progress”.
Source: Gerald Fenech for Forbes.com