The need to create a secure, scalable, trusted IoT Ecosystem is growing ever more urgent.
As time progresses, we are becoming more and more dependent on the IoT for everything in our lives. We use it every single day – from taking care of our family to getting to and from work, and even to regulate our health.
The problem is, it’s becoming clear that our current model won’t be sustainable forever and we’re going to have to find an alternative solution.
The Problem with Our Current Centralized Model
Right now, current IoT systems are relying on centralized, brokered communication models.
Unfortunately, the centralization of the existing data infrastructure has left current systems vulnerable, inefficient, and ultimately unsuitable for the technological advances that are upon us.
In this model, devices are identified, authenticated, and connected through cloud servers. As a result, even if the devices are just a few feet apart, the connection between them will have to go exclusively through the Internet.
While the centralized method has been successful for the past few decades, it’s becoming increasingly clear that it will be unable to cope with the growing needs of the enormous IoT Ecosystems of the future.
As a result of the massive expansion of the IoT, the price of our already expensive solutions is about to rocket even higher due to the expensive infrastructure and maintenance costs associated with centralized clouds, large server farms, and networking equipment.
The enormous volume of communications that will need to be handled as we create more and more IoT devices will only force prices up even further.
The recent explosion of centralized apps and technologies is highlighting how outdated our current systems are. If we want to keep up, something must change.
Using Blockchain to Decentralize Data Streaming
One of the platforms at the forefront of the innovative data sharing concept is Streamr.
Founded in 2017, it can be described as ‘the real-life marketplace’ for data sharing, by enabling a new way for machines and people to trade data on a decentralized P2P network.
Transferring data in a P2P fashion between users is an extremely efficient alternative to storing all gathered IoT data on a blockchain. The P2P network will prevent bloating the blockchain with unnecessary data that doesn’t necessarily require saving.
How Decentralized Data Streaming Would Work
Imagine a self-driving car that constantly requires data from other machines for optimal optimization. Such information could include electricity prices, traffic congestion information from other cars, and even weather forecasts.
The car would know when it would be getting low on gas, and where would be the cheapest gas station to go to fill up. If something went wrong, it would know that it needed repairs. It would even be able to call the repair services itself!
Not only would this make driving far more convenient – but it would also be substantially safer.
A platform such as Streamr will provide a single interface for real-time data delivery and payment, and make these data streams tradeable by people and machines using a cryptographic token; DataCoin.
The vehicle can get the data it requires, and pay for it using DataCoin. If the car has data that is required by other cars, it can also sell it to them in exchange for DataCoin.
And it doesn’t end there – self-driving cars is only one of the possible concepts. In the future, Streamr will also be compatible with other innovations, such as drones and smart cities.
Using the IoT to Save the Planet
Even industries that historically didn’t fit well with computers have been transformed by the increasing number of IoT devices connected to the internet.
There’s no denying that global warming is on the rise. Just take a look at the erratic weather conditions we’ve been experiencing all over the world. These events are becoming too frequent for us to write them off as a mere coincidence.
The change in our climate is exactly what inspired the team at Streamr to first consider how the IoT might be used for to create monitoring devices that can aid us in our battle against global warming.
Some examples include; installing agricultural sensors, using data to estimate the amount of carbon sequestered, and rewarding farmers and companies with carbon tokens for the amount of carbon which has been provably sequestered.
These are only a few examples of the potential uses of a decentralized streaming service. We are living in the most exciting, fast-paced periods ever known to man. As time progresses, we only expect more opportunities to open up.