Walmart is another big name that has chosen to pursue a blockchain-based path. According to reports, the company has filed for a patent that will allow for blockchain to govern its energy management system.
The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has released a document recently revealing Walmart’s patent “for managing demand on an electrical grid using cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.”
According to the patent’s background:
“Currently, energy providers deliver energy to locations that inefficiently use the energy, which leads to increased energy costs for consumers. The increased costs result from various appliances and devices that consume energy at higher levels than the appliance or device may actually need to function or perform certain tasks. Smart appliances and devices are now available to consumers that can operate more energy efficiently, but still consume more energy than needed or economically practical.”
The patent added there is now the need for a method and system to manage the electrical grid through demand regulation.
Walmart’s patent abstract described the technology as:
“A method and system for managing a demand on an electrical grid is provided, including: receiving a capped total amount of cryptocurrency available to purchase units of energy from an energy provider, the capped amount of cryptocurrency being recorded in a publicly distributed transaction ledger, allocating a portion of the cryptocurrency of the capped total amount of cryptocurrency to each energy consumption device, wherein the portion of the cryptocurrency allocated to each energy consumption device is recorded in the ledger, receiving, a request from an energy consumption device of the plurality of energy consumption devices that the energy metering device purchase an energy unit, using the portion of cryptocurrency allocated to the first energy consumption device, accessing the publicly distributed transaction ledger in response to receiving the request from the first energy consumption to verify that the first energy consumption device has a remaining amount of cryptocurrency.”
However, as with other reported technology patents,it is uncertain that the proposal will be realized but it is safe to assume that Walmart is exploring blockchain opportunities.
The Future of Blockchain
In another article from Forbes, analysts claim that for the next four years the blockchain market (for products and services) can reach up to $14 billion. Regardless if the projection will become a reality or not, it is clear that the demand for blockchain will skyrocket.