Amazon Blockchain: to gain visibility in the supply chain
Amazon provided information on Amazon Managed Blockchain and Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB) . Amazon does seem to be moving forward based on a clear understanding of the different benefits of ledgers and blockchain.
This move is following increased competition from other giants such as Meta (formerly known as Facebook) recruiting their own team of experts to create a “metaverse”, which in addition to being a simulated 3-D environment is a “blockchain concept”. Furthermore, Google has formed a recent partnership with Bakkt, opening the way for crypto acceptance into its Google Pay app.
Blockchain: let us review the basics
Blockchain is just that, a chain of blocks of transaction data. The body of transactions creates a ledger, a record of all the transactions.
Two key aspects of the original blockchain concept are immutability and verifiability. The first means that individuals can’t change the already entered records. The history always remains.
The second means that each member of the chain can verify the chain. This is done through mathematical proofs of keys in each transactions.
Immutability and verifiability provide the trust that supports the model.
Companies are looking at different levels of implementation of the technology. The trust in the ledger is one aspect while blockchains can be both public or private depending on the application.
Blockchain technology on the cloud is a profoundly striking innovation with blockchain. Cloud computing is slowly opening up to decentralized infrastructure for achieving better accessibility, security, efficiency, and flexibility. Amazon has realized this and the products they are rolling out are an attempt to address the scale of use cases.
Amazon Managed Blockchain
Multiple parties can transact with one another without having to know or trust each other. A fully managed service that makes it easy to create and manage scalable blockchain networks and distributed ledger technology. As mentioned, the ledger is at the core of blockchain and can be extracted, but there are still interesting business uses for blockchain.
Amazon is looking at supporting a branded version of blockchain through initial support for Hyperledger Fabric and announced support for Ethereum to follow. Hyperledger is an open source collaborative supported by the Linux Foundation. The blockchain community is still new, so opensource matters.
Notice, also, the split between those two platforms. Hyperledger Fabric is aimed at private networks while Ethereum has focused on public networks. Rather than squish both ideas into one technology, Amazon has made the right choice in using different tools for different goals.
Nestle’s Chain Of Origin Coffee Brings Supply Chain Transparency With Amazon Managed Blockchain
Nestlé is a global food and beverage company with more than 2,000 brands and global distribution across 189 countries worldwide.
Transparency in supply chains is increasingly important to consumers, who want to know what is in their food and where it comes from. While Nestlé has begun to release information on its supply chains for its 15 key commodities, using blockchain technology enables a more precise tracking,” said Armin Nehzat, Digital Technology Manager, Nestlé Oceania.
“With Amazon Managed Blockchain, we are able to set up our Hyperledger Fabric network and easily invite our partners to collaborate in our supply chain transparency efforts. Amazon Managed Blockchain will enable our customers to track their products on the blockchain from the farm all the way through to consumption.”
Amazon patents blockchain based solution for product authentication
Three years after initial filing, Amazon, world’s biggest online retailer, was granted a patent for blockchain based solution for product authentication from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
The system would allow the end-user of particular product as well as other parties involved in item production and distribution (suppliers, manufacturers, distributors etc.) to gain visibility in the supply chain and would provide the immutable record of the items life as it moves through the chain from production to the buyer. This in turn would enable establishment of trustworthy product provenance and will help to prevent fraud and forgery, which are widespread right now in many product categories due to lack of transparency in the supply chain.
Amazon Quantum Ledger Database (QLDB)
A fully managed ledger database that provides a centralized, immutable, and cryptographically verifiable transaction log.
The trust in the blockchain model is important, even when a blockchain isn’t needed. To have the same kind of trust in a regular database, a lot of extra data tables and code in applications to provide the audit trails that are native to blockchain. That extra work impacts both performance and the ability to update and modify the system.
Amazon created QLDB to address that problem for cases where a full blockchain isn’t needed. One example presented is a state’s licensing system, for cars, businesses and other entities that needs to be registered with the state. There’s no interest in allowing the information to reside in multiple places, as it does in cryptocurrency. What the state wants to do is open the records for updates, for instance when a car is sold, but still control the data.
Imagine QLDB, in very simple terms, as a database that allows inserts but not updates or deletes. Since database entries can’t be changed or removed, there is immutability. Because all people who have access to the database can traverse the entire transaction history, you have verifiability.
An interesting addition to verifiability provided to people who use the system, given there is central control, is that each transaction uses a hash just as in a blockchain. Each user can access their own transaction chains and run verification on the hash table in order to ensure the that transaction has not been changed.
Amazon ‘Head of Digital Currency and Blockchain’
Amazon was looking for a new “Head of Digital Currency and Blockchain” to join its Payment Acceptance team and lead the company’s crypto adoption.
The new hire will work in an exciting environment constantly changing with emerging technologies. This role will be an important position at Amazon as it aims to spearhead crypto acceptance while also integrating blockchain technology into its various platforms.
This employment offer is looking for “an experienced product leader” who will have the following responsibilities:
“You will leverage your domain expertise in Blockchain, Distributed Ledger, Central Bank Digital Currencies and Cryptocurrency to develop the case for the capabilities which should be developed, drive overall vision and product strategy, and gain leadership buy-in and investment for new capabilities.”
The job ad also reveals the company’s intentions for building a wider range of cryptocurrency-related products and services.
With Amazon on board, the tech industry may see more companies join them by implementing these exciting fintech initiatives across various sectors and industry channels, making it easier for customers to purchase goods and services using cryptocurrencies.