Consensus 2018 – what is waiting for us in future?


Consensus 2018 - what is waiting for us in future of blockchain

The largest and the most extravagant of all blockchain conferences was held on May, 13-16 in New York City, convening the most prominent names of cryptos and an array of avid enthusiasts to ensure a footfall of around 8,000 under one hotel roof.

Although the Bitcoin price that was expected to rise rapidly (like earlier in the year) due to the Consensus conference, didn’t exactly come through, there were a lot of exciting things that happened at the Blockchain Technology Summit. Following is an overview of what went down among Lamborghinis and free blockchain beer.

HTC with its vision to power your phone via Blockchain

The Taiwanese phone maker has proposed an Android phone that will be powered by Blockchain Technology and the project is headed by the famed designer of their virtual reality headset Vive, Phil Chen. Named the Exodus, it will feature a universal wallet and what is necessarily the hardware that would lead to the support of cryptocurrencies and DAPPS.

Mr. Chen also said:

“Through Exodus, we are excited to be supporting underlying protocols such as Bitcoin, Lightning Networks, Ethereum, Dfinity, and more. We would like to support the entire blockchain ecosystem, and in the next few months we’ll be announcing many more exciting partnerships together.”

The phones are aimed at acting like nodes to facilitate cryptocurrency trading among the users. There was no official price or release date for the phone provided by the company.

HTC unveiled its first crypto-aimed smartphone called Exodus

The CEO of Twitter has continued to support crypto

In a headline talk between the CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey and the CEO of Lightning Labs, Elizabeth Stark, Dorsey put forth his thoughts on how he would like to see cryptocurrency as a legitimate payment method.

Sources say that Square, his payment processor is rumored to be in a stage of giving the option to its customers to have their cryptocurrency wallets as their primary bank accounts. Square cash has already started accepting Bitcoin since the end of last year.

The CEO of Twitter Jack Dorsey would like to see cryptocurrency as a legitimate payment method.

The elders come to visit

The golden elders of Bitcoin, the ones who were in this before the glitz and glamour of Lambos took over, also graced this conference. Blockchain pioneer Sasha Ivanov of Waves won fans instantly with his short 10-minute speech. He mainly focused on explaining the essence Waves and elaborated about Waves being the world’s fastest blockchain and second biggest ICO platform that now supports smart contracts.

Identity platform “Civic” that can verify a user’s age

Brilliant marketing strategies were employed

There was a refreshing flurry of new marketing techniques at display during the conference. Cryptobeer, a genius marketing strategy used by identity platform “Civic” that verified a user’s age and if found to be legal, would allow a user to get a free beer from their vending machine set up at the venue. There were diamond encrusted hardware wallets, crypto jewelry with silver and gold renditions of coins and a lot more from puppies to literal airdrops of coin-filled balloons (Courtesy: A secure messaging platform, Mainframe).

Ethereum is all in favor of making Blockchain adoption easier

The Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA) has a joint alliance of around 500 member companies including founding companies JP Morgan and Santander. They have also published a complete specification for Enterprise Ethereum to ease adoption. The EEA stated that this document will make the adoption faster and could be a step in regards to laying the foundation for establishing a global standard where cryptocurrency adoption is concerned.

EEA executive Ron Resnick said:

“The market wants competition. It wants multiple vendors of choice.”

The alliance also stated,

“By replacing costly and ineffective multi-protocol propriety approaches, enterprises everywhere can begin developing new ways to create customer value across entire markets – from banking, law, and healthcare to advertising, communications and more.”

Organizations have a say about Blockchain’s importance

The Consensus was also a witness to a keynote panel featuring the CEO and CIO of FedEx. As an international logistics leader, FedEx has been quoted as saying that it sees real value in blockchain. 

Blockchain has the potential to completely revolutionize trade across borders,” said Frederick W. Smith, Founder and CEO of FedEx. “We think this is potentially a profound technological change.”

There was also a relatively wonderful experience to see enterprise-focused firms like Accenture, IBM and Deloitte touting their progress with corporate solutions using enterprise blockchain on exhibit.

New Kids on the block

VeChain is a relatively new company that offers a single, global enterprise-level public blockchain platform with built-in governance and IoT integration. Then there is Boardwalktech which leverages years of expertise with distributed immutable database technology predating the blockchain craze to offer enterprises shared digital ledger technology, i.e., the tech lying at the heart of enterprise blockchain.

Another interesting vendor on display that had too many people talking was BTL. They have been successful in crafting an entirely new architecture for their Interbit Blockchain development platform. On the one hand that most blockchain platforms consist of a single, distributed blockchain that leverages multiple nodes writing identical blocks to ever-growing, identical chains, BTL, on the other hand, took a step back and invented blockchain at the hypervisor level – the infrastructure technology at the heart of server virtualization. Each server can operate and inter-connect many thousands of blockchains in a secure, private, and scalable manner.

Interbit - entirely new architecture for BTL's blockchain development platform

Closed by Snoop Dogg

Rapper Snoop Dogg was roped in to perform for the after party, and it was as spectacular as it could be. But at the same time, there is a counter-argument that this should not have been a good time for this since this year hasn’t exactly been great for the industry. Regulations have been increased, there is an increase in scams and scamsters, market caps have dropped, and the general public is pretty skeptical about blockchain.

Final Words

For what it’s worth, this conference, albeit its lows in terms of slow lines of admission, internal jokes with the Lamborghinis parked outside the venue to show off newfound wealth, parking tickets, regulators driving the industry, this conference has actually seen a lot of positivity and has been at the forefront of around 20 other blockchain related events last week.