The cryptocurrency was heralded as the end of paper money and financial institutions. Neither of these has occurred in the intervening years, though things are slowly changing.
While there is certainly room for improvement and the opportunity for disruption and radical innovation, the technology behind cryptocurrencies like Ethereum is actually having more of an effect on society than the cryptocurrencies themselves. What are the real world uses for Ethereum?
Ethereum, in particular, supports web 3.0. This refers to the democratized distribution of services instead of relying on centralized hubs. Then you don’t have to rely on big players with third-party servers that collect and control your data and charge you a fee for the privilege.
The backbone of the Ethereum cryptocurrency supports distributed smart contracts. The contracts are backed by blockchain technology. They become secure, verifiable, and accessible to everyone for a relatively low cost. The transactions are tied to Ethereum tokens. This has the side benefit of propping up the Ethereum currency.
However, Ethereum was designed specifically for digital contracts, and it can tie various payments and other transactions to criteria built into the contract. This means it can be used for a variety of legal and financial services from the payment of royalties to controlling intellectual property distribution.
In theory, Ethereum could be used to set up legal mortgage contracts without going through a bank, or you could collateralize assets through Ethereum cryptocurrency, whether selling shares of your business or tapping into a secure peer to peer lending network.
Crowdfunding is tied to the smart contract functionality of Ethereum cryptocurrency. Ethereum has a number of benefits over other types of crowdfunding. For example, you can take advantage of crowdfunding through Ethereum without paying any fees.
In contrast, some websites take as much as 5 percent. You also don’t have to worry about the crowdfunding platform rejecting your particular proposal.
You can accept payment from all over the world, and you can convert the cryptocurrency payments into the currency of your choice. You also don’t have to worry about the currency controls those platforms or other countries set.
No one can limit how much money you pull out of the account at one time or prohibit you from accessing the funds from another country. You could buy items with Ethereum, too. The only issue is finding someone who accepts Ethereum or converting the Ethereum cryptocurrency to one the seller accepts.
A side benefit of cryptocurrency is that you can manage your financial risk using a CFD or contract for difference. You can trade Ethereum with a CFD on various platforms as well, or you could use crypto exchanges to convert Ethereum to another cryptocurrency.
Web hosting could become much more secure and reliable if tied to Ethereum cryptocurrency. A website owner could pay people through smart contracts to host their content, and the information could be distributed across the web on a variety of servers.
The contracts could control what information is visible and arrange payment to hosts. This makes websites nearly impossible to tamper with and far harder to take down.
Ethereum cryptocurrency was designed with potential business users in mind, and its potential is mostly untapped. We can expect to see many more real-world uses of this technology in addition to those we’ve already outlined.