How CTOs are combining blockchain with IoT, ML & AI to grow businesses in diverse sectors

Tech leaders are breaking conventions by combining advanced technologies to grow businesses

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The new-edge technologies like IoT, blockchain and AI have come a long way since inception. Although each technology has grown in their own definitive range, IT leaders are striving to reach a confluence for these technologies. While IoT has sensors with billions of connected devices, AI is the reasoning part that analyses and makes decisions and blockchain is responsible for creating a secure, indelible record of transactions and data exchanges. This heady mixture creates real-time actionable insights, deepens connectivity and achieves unprecedented visibility. The trick is to connect AI and IoT with block-chain based platforms. Advantages of each technology can be fully leveraged by integrating it with other leading-edge technologies and this synergy will allow covering most of the problem areas. 

Blockchain can provide solutions for long-standing efficiency and security issues. Integration of blockchain technology with IoT and AI can have a far-reaching effect in healthcare, supply chain, agriculture, manufacturing, banking, logistics, retail and industrial sectors. 

How blockchain can drive change

A good working model could be IOT generating data from a multitude of sensors and analytics, blockchain storing data and, AI/ML drawing intelligence from the same data. An example of the above is in a supply chain where IOT can measure a lot of different metrics from environment to trip record to motion sensing, use blockchain to store that data and then use AI on that data to make human-like decisions. The purpose of blockchain in this solution is to provide transparency across organization and immutability of data as well as executing smart contracts.

This is not just true for supply chain but is possible in many sectors such as healthcare manufacturing, identity, and security applications and even finance industries. For example, a bank offering line of credit to SMEs may depend on these technologies to make faster, accurate and error-free assessment by using IoT to measure goods, raw materials, finished products, assets, etc. of an SME, store these in blockchain for audit and other decision-making purposes and employ AI to make recommendations. 

Each technology in itself is capable of transformation. They don’t need one another to be useful. But together, they are even more powerful catalysts to solve problems that are difficult to handle otherwise. Take an example of healthcare. Healthcare issues such as surgical infections, hygiene, negligence etc can have a bad impact on the patient as well as the hospital in itself. The combination of IoT, blockchain and AI can be used effectively to bring accountability, efficiency and better and faster patient recovery. 

Spawning new breed applications

AI and IoT have actualized the concept of self-driving cars, intelligent homes, cognitive systems, robotics etc. and blockchain helps to harmonize the interactions and operations employed by making them work faster and more secure. As IoT devices are mostly connected to public networks, they are highly vulnerable. Blockchain solves this vulnerability issue by linear and permanent indexed records which are downright impossible to hack. The way in which blocks are stored in a specific database in a blockchain system makes it ultimately secure. Blockchain can be used to provide a secure, scalable and verifiable platform that has unassailable security implementations.

Blockchain and smart contracts are going to change the way we look at future financial transactions and banking. IoT, blockchain and AI combo can settle insurance claims instantaneously and companies can leverage this to increase their market share and also prevent misuse of insurance. The trio can be utilized in industries and manufacturing units to support on-site safety management. Now we have algorithms available to measure worker’s heat stress level. The algorithm enables monitoring of worker’s physiological parameters such as temperature, pulse, humidity, activity level using IoT wearables and sensors. The resulting analytics helps the company to improve working conditions and prevent work-related health issues. Blockchain helps to ensure personalized data privacy as well as health insurance disbursement using smart contracts.

This combination is bound to change the way we live and work. For instance, IoT, blockchain and AI will act as enablers to energy consumers to become an energy producer. Green energy generated with solar by an individual can be traded to another customer or given back to the grid. While IoT enables measurement, blockchain provides transparency and audit, and AI can provide the needed intelligence. 

Additionally, IoT, blockchain and AI can be used to provide digital identity which will revolutionize the way we provide identity and credentials for various requirement wherein IoT identifies, Blockchain controls credentials and accesses, and AI can prevent fraud.  The trio will also help us become more giving citizens by bringing transparency to philanthropy and CSR efforts where IoT can tag physical donations, Blockchain can build transparency, and AI can provide more appropriate distribution. In the Enterprise sector,  Blockchain can help AI in terms of data scaling, managing computer resources sharing, and in creating a more transparent and trustworthy data economy.

With the rise in demand for talented engineers and developers in IoT, blockchain and AI, organizations will face a scarcity for the right talent pool to meet the supply-demand gap. The concern of skilled manpower shortage can be dealt with by investing in academic institutions and training centers to build the right talent pool. The deep performance insights gained by the confluence of IoT, blockchain and AI will help propel our existing technological ecosystem to newer heights.


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