Ten years after Satoshi Nakamoto created the bitcoins, the blockchain market saw the end of the first dividend period, while new tech applications to global trading and soaring number of new blockchain patents prop up the cooling battlefield.
Early April has witnessed the first blockchain application to government-involved energy trading by a subsidiary of the Chinese state-owned chemical conglomerate Sinochem Group. It was also the first time that this globally maniacal technology has been applied to all key participants in the commodity trading process.
The blockchain seemed to achieve another milestone, but may not the same for one of its core products, the cryptocurrency. The price of a bitcoin has jumped by around two third compared to its peak on last December, as tightening regulations by different authorities and suspension of global investment led to a mass value collapse of digital tokens.
China has vowed to block all websites related to cryptocurrency trading and initial coin offering (ICO) in order to clamp down domestic participation in overseas transaction of virtual tokens, after the country officially banned ICOs last September, amid high risks of the sector.
“If it was four months ago, I would alert you that nothing is more important than getting into the market,” said a blockchain investor who has traced closely the market for more than 18 months.
Investments on blockchain has been locked into a capital-piled battle from the first dividend period since the beginning of March, according to six major venture capital investors, who had shut down the taps to the pool before the Chinese New Year (mid-February).
The blockchain was emerged in a market gap when the internet went downturn while the artificial intelligence (A.I.) and bio-pharmaceuticals slowly edged up. Speculation through ICOs and other blockchain projects, only few of which had been proceed with actual adoptions, continued to fuel bubbles.
But since no valuation system of digital tokens has been established, such business bubbles could not be accurately measured, said Zou Chuanwei, former analyst of China’s central bank.
Blockchain creates secured decentralized ledgers and provides a mechanism for various parties to check a set of facts and agreements, unchangeable once recorded. In the past decade, a string of products including the bitcoins and ethereums, the top two virtual tokens by market cap, had been generated based on the technology.
The blockchain has reportedly simplified the complex and time-consuming transactions by at least 50 percent for the gasoline shipment from China’s Quanzhou to Singapore through digitalizing key documents, and reduced financing costs by at least 30 percent, according to the state-run news agency Xinhua.
The cooling market might be waiting for a boom of application that could monetize the innovation.
According a Thomson Reuters’ poll, the number of new blockchain patents filed to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has tripled to a record high of 406 in 2017. China ranked the first with a 56-percent share among all countries involved, quadrupling its own number of last year.