Blockchain technology is on the rise, but companies that really want to use it can have some obstacles:
It is relatively unknown.
Its implementation, like all technological change, involves organizational risks.
The expert professionals in blockchain are few and expensive.
In fact, this may be the main practical problem for companies. The average salary of a blockchain developer in the United States is $ 130,000 per year (and above $ 150,000 in Silicon Valley, Boston or New York), compared to $ 105,000 from a software developer, according to Burning Glass Technologies, consultant specialized in analyzing employment data. And if the specialist is a ‘freelance’, it charges an average of 150 dollars an hour according to Upwork, a portal specialized in independent workers. Despite this, the demand does not stop growing: according to Financial Times, the number of offers in Linkedin related to ‘blockchain’ tripled in 2017.
Consequently, the business interest to implement blockchain technology coupled with the real difficulties to do so we have seen is causing many companies prefer to outsource the development of blockchain solutions, or even prefer to acquire them and pay for their use. The big technology companies (IBM, Oracle, Amazon, Microsoft) already offer in a certain way ‘Blockchain as a Service’ or BaaS, as a way to enjoy this technology without incurring great costs. They are external providers that offer remote access to the cloud to customers of the company that requests these services. And this in the end what we have to show is that the Blockchain-as-a-Service or BaaS sector is becoming a great business niche.
What is Blockchain-as-a-Service?
This new term is nothing other than the adaptation, with B of ‘Blockchain’, of the terms used in business jargon to designate those services (‘a a Service’, ‘aaS’) that a provider offers by remote access and through cloud computing to its customers.
So BaaS joins other terms such as IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service), PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service) or probably the most common, ‘Software-as-a-Service’, SaaS. All offer essentially the same advantage: cost savings, because you pay by fixed subscription or consumption, and simplicity of use.
However, these solutions can not be considered as “complete”, since they do not solve the main problem we were saying before: we still need to have blockchain experts that take the tools provided by the provider (tokens, Smart contracts, nodes of the block chain, programming language and environment) to be able to obtain a solution that really serves and is operative to the client. And we can say for sure that this is the main cause of the blockchain technology not having a massive implantation in the companies: they do not have the complete solutions, only the tools. IT IS LIKE IF WE WERE SELLING A KIT OF A CAR FOR PIECES, WITHOUT MOUNTING … AND WE ARE NOT MECHANICAL !!
Our BaaS platform: ‘iCommunity Blockchain Solutions’ (iBS)
As we said earlier, some large software companies offer blockchain services. Some examples are:
- IBM specialized in Hyperledger Fabric.
- Amazon collaborating with Digital Currency Group.
- Microsoft offering services of R3, Hyperledger Fabric.
- Oracle, with Oracle Blockcyhain Cloud.
- Quorum or Alastria which is a Spanish network that is mounted on Quorum.
These services usually offer storage of information, in this case the blockchain, an increase in security, the need to invest in hardware and the possibility of a more friendly environment to work with, being able to create your own blockchain solution. But as we can all see, there is one drawback: the solution TE LA MONTAS TÚ. They are not “finished” or “turnkey” solutions ready to be used directly by the company. And this therefore requires a prior process of construction and integration of the solution that the company needs, using the tools provided by the supplier. With which we return to the original and main problem: NEED TO DISPOSE OF SPECIALIZED RESOURCES, especially human beings, trained to be able to carry out these works. It is therefore not a total solution to the initial problem, but only partial.
In contrast to this approach, there are other approaches, such as the one we propose from iCommunity Labs through its BaaS platform “iCommunity Blockchain Solutuions” (iBS), where we go one step further: in addition to providing the services offered by IBM, Amazon, Oracle or Microsoft, iBS is a platform that provides “turnkey” solutions through different verticals or use cases, which allows us to carry out integral proposals in which we integrate one or several of these verticals, thus offering our clients solutions more complete than they allow to solve more complex problems, without having to tackle for their part costly and long processes of development or integration with their backoffice.
It is the perfect solution for all types of companies, but especially for those with little or no ICT resources, which otherwise would not have access to this technology.