Integrating The Physical and Virtual Worlds: Blockchain Projects Making Inroads Into Our Daily Lives

Most people in the crypto space concern themselves with speculating on the highly volatile asset class. They don’t pay much attention to blockchain, the revolutionary technology that underpins cryptocurrencies.

Thankfully with the growing crypto adoption, we have begun to see blockchain projects that are integrating the physical and virtual worlds. They are enabling us to pay for goods, order food, and do much more with crypto as we go about our day.

Banking is not the only industry blockchain projects are touching. Given the benefits of blockchain, it is only a matter of time before the technology becomes a part of our everyday life. Businesses, as well as individuals, have begun to embrace crypto not just as a speculative asset class, but as the actual means of doing business. 

According to CB Insights’ Market Sizing tool, annual spending on blockchain solutions will reach $16 billion by 2023. Blockchain projects have found their way in gaming, cannabis, insurance, restaurant, food delivery, and other industries.

Order food and specialty products

Most of the blockchain projects have focused on financial applications dissociated from the real economy, leaving the landscape open for others to explore. Bistroo is a Dutch direct-to-consumer platform for meals, food, and beverages. It facilitates restaurant takeaway and delivery, as well as direct-to-consumer delivery of fresh and specialty products straight from the source.

Unlike the traditional online takeaway and delivery platforms such as Uber Eats and TakeAway that take up to 30% of the order value as their commission, Bistroo takes a mere 5% cut. Its blockchain solution facilitates a direct connection between restaurants and specialty food stores and their customers. 

Restaurants can choose to receive order payments in Bistroo’s native BIST tokens. They won’t have to pay a third-party transaction fee on BIST transactions because no third party is involved in processing them. Customers have total control over their consumption data. Bistroo rewards them with BIST tokens if they choose to share data with restaurants. Customers can use BIST tokens to purchase foods at reduced prices compared to fiat currency purchases.

What makes Bistroo even more interesting is that merchants can raise capital directly from the community members, if they need it to make improvements and stabilize their operations. Community members and merchants sign a smart contract with transparent terms and conditions. The investors receive a certain percentage of the future sale revenues over a given length of time, along with the interest. 

Pay for your coffee in crypto

Blockchain’s ability to eliminate the middlemen, bring transparency and fairness, and save businesses more time and money is the main reason behind the growing crypto adoption. Crypto.com Pay is a merchant solution from Crypto.com where merchants can sign-up to accept crypto payments from customers, with their own payments made in fiat.

Merchants pay zero processing fee for settlements in crypto, or up to 80% on fees versus typical payment processors. You can use Crypto.com Pay to pay for a coffee at Starbucks or buy goods and services from hundreds of other merchants. 

Another blockchain project, Winding Tree, is helping remove the middlemen from the travel and hospitality sectors. In the hospitality business, hotel chains lose 10-25% of their total revenue in the form of commission paid out to third-party booking services. Winding Tree offers a “decentralized open-source B2B travel marketplace” to hotels, airlines, and tourism offices, facilitating a direct provider-to-consumer interaction and reducing costs.

Healthcare sector is also witnessing practical applications of blockchain technology. SimplyVital Health is a blockchain solution that enables coordinated care for patients. It allows the creation of an open-source blockchain database where doctors can access patient information to provide care.

Crypto philanthropy 

Yes, some projects are harnessing the power of blockchain to change people’s lives at the grassroots level. GoodDollar is one such project setting new benchmarks in crypto philanthropy. It’s a non-profit initiative focused on advancing financial education and empowering people through the free distribution of cryptocurrencies.

GoodDollar’s impact investing model uses free-market forces to create a sustainable and scalable framework for a crypto-based universal basic income (UBI). It wraps around yield-generating DeFi protocols. You can deposit the underlying assets on the platform to support its UBI model, and then yield farm on supported DeFi protocols. 

A portion of the interest you earn is returned to you, and the rest of the interest is used as collateral to mint new G$ tokens that are distributed every day to people across dozens of countries. You can withdraw your funds anytime you want. More than 250,000 people in over a hundred countries receive free cryptocurrency straight to their phones to participate and learn without having to invest.

Wrapping it up

The year 2021 has turned out to be an astounding one for blockchain and decentralized finance (DeFi). Thanks to the better transparency, accountability, low fees, and fast speed of transactions, blockchain technology is revolutionizing the way we pay for goods and services in everyday life. In the months and years to come, we’ll see more blockchain projects in our daily lives. Crypto is increasingly capturing the fiat-land.