Like Others Before It, Messaging Is On The Verge Of Blockchain Disruption
The blockchain is surging like a wave that knows no bound. With each passing day, new fields and industries are disrupted by the emerging technology.
Prominent among areas where blockchain technology has made in-roads are industries such as:
- Remittance: Peer-to-peer payments have increased the speed of transaction and reduced cost significantly.
- Land records: The immutability of the blockchain is enabling the registration of lands using geographical coordinates. This goes a long way in establishing an organised system especially in developing countries where land issues have been responsible for numerous crisis between families and communities.
- Education: Hosting certificates on the blockchain is an area that institutions like the University of Nicosia have adopted. This system explores the immutability of the blockchain to prove the authenticity of certificates. Hence, claims of qualifications can be authentified by anyone from anywhere in the world.
- Finance: Financial institutions are adopting the blockchain to significantly reduce costs as well as eliminate fraudulent transactions. The transparent nature of the blockchain enables certification of ownership and efficient clearing of transactions.
The Bane of Centralization
One major industry that is also beginning to experience a revolution courtesy of the Blockchain is the messaging industry.
From smaller domestic scandals to international breach of security, the porosity of existing messaging platforms has become a serious cause for worry on a global level.
Edward Snowden became popular for serially broadcasting unauthorized sensitive information, most of which repercussions are still being felt at international levels.
Hillary Clinton will continue to rue her chances at the 2016 US presidential election, save for the hacked emails that were used as a tool for the campaign of calumny against her.
These are just a few of the high profile cases involving non-secure messaging.
The negative experiences of everyday people in terms of theft, security breach, relationship and career scandals among other cases can never be over-emphasized.
Adding to this, the exponential growth of users on the centralized messaging platforms like whatsapp, telegram, Facebook, e.t.c naturally imply increased pressure on the host servers, therefore creating room for possible future breakdown or interruption of the systems.
Another downside of conventional messaging platforms is the existence of regulations and restrictions, or the possibilities therein. Institutions like the CTIA – The Wireless Association in the US, and the National Communication Commission in Nigeria are regulatory agencies that control the communication ecosystem in their respective countries.
The Blockchain Breakout
The emergence of blockchain with its inherent characteristics offers the opportunity for improved security, enabled privacy and ultimate freedom in messaging.
Blockchain messaging platforms are usually purpose built to combine utility and incentives. The Obsidian platform which is divided into two major aspects, the Obsidian Coin (ODN) and the Obsidian Messenger (OSM) represent a typical example of a blockchain platform which offers both utility and incentives in the decentralized ecosystem.
The Obsidian Coin is based on the STRAT coin by Stratis, which is in turn based on Bitcoin. The use of the Stratis C# code base enables Obsidian to strategically choose new features as they are tested and proven on the Stratis platform. ODN can also be kept in sync with tested new features from Bitcoin, including features such as the SegWit scaling solution.
The Obsidian Secure Messenger is being developed to be a light client to the Obsidian blockchain and a messenger app that offers end-to-end-message encryption with perfect forward secrecy (PFS) relying on Elliptic Curve Diffie-Hellmann (ECD).
Apparently, blockchain platforms offer more efficient and secure messaging services. Considering the loopholes that are evident in the existing systems, coupled with the fact that users rarely enjoy any form of benefits, platforms like Obsidian are bound to revolutionize the messaging industry.
For a system where security, privacy and non-extraction of personal information is guaranteed, plus the potential commercial opportunities, it will rather be sooner than later before the ecosystem experiences an exodus of users from the traditional platforms.
A Community Growing in Confidence
As blockchain continues in its fast journey towards mainstream adoption, there is increasing confidence by the public in the solution that the technology brings. This is exemplified by the rate of success of ICOs across the industry. These ICOs have not only been of immense benefit to the startups and companies, but they have also performed as profitable investment opportunities for participants. This is majorly as a result of the undeniable continued influx of newcomers into the ecosystem, thereby causing organic market growth that is reflected by the appreciation of existing investments.
Obsidian has embarked on an ICO which ends on August 26, 2017. The major purpose of the ICO is to raise funds towards the development of all important Obsidian Secure Messenger (OSM).
The minimum goal of the Obsidian ICO has long been surpassed, thus suggesting that the project is all set for eventual completion and subsequent rollout. Joining the Obsidian ICO is seen as a reasonable support for a viable project with a lot of potential for the growth of investment.
Blockchain is a foundational technology, like the internet. Already, we have seen a number of industries that have been disrupted by the blockchain. They include, financial services, voting, real estate, music streaming among others. Apparently, it will only be a matter of time before we have the messaging industry join the list of disrupted systems by the blockchain.