Online retail sparked a revolution. In the past couple of decades, software goods have increasingly been hawked in droves over digital shelves by faceless merchants to anonymous clients, bringing an end to the golden age of floppy disks and CD-ROMs. The costs of storing data and moving them through digital highways has made the purchase of applications, games, and music instantaneous, requiring only the simple click of a button.
As we shall see, in spite of new heights scaled each year by software sales, there is much to iron out. Online marketplaces have had their fair share of problems and the evolution of the Internet will likely hinge on the development of new services such as Blockhub to solve the problems of old.
The following are some of the pressing issues that plague the growth of online distribution, and the solutions that are emerging from a further move towards decentralization:
**Quality takes time and effort. **In the software industry, the performance and reliability of sophisticated applications requires the collaborative efforts of engineers, programmers, artists, marketers, legal experts, and many other professionals. In most cases, a hefty amount of funding is necessary in order to develop a successful product.
With most centralized environments such as the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store, developers have to rely on outside channels to fund their projects. Crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter, Early Access and Green Light by Steam, among many others have faced regular criticism for “high levels of risk, uncertainty, and information asymmetry.” These problems are worsened by policy, legal problems, and bureaucracy.
On the other end, the user cannot easily convert in-app rewards into fiat currency, a major obstacle in generating a viable or supplementary income. Finally, the centralized model remains stifled and limited due to excessive administration, standard regulations and over-wrought legal procedures.
Blockhub promotes developers by enabling a direct relationship creator and customer. The service further incentivizes the market through the monetization of products and services using cryptocurrencies — all without a middleman taking a significant cut of the profits.
The platform further benefits the end-user through the enabling of monetization of gameplay, application usage, and trade. It also provides a proper exchange to convert cryptocurrency into fiat.
The flood of mediocre apps into the market has saturated distribution channels. It is becoming increasinglyhard for quality apps to be discovered. This is a big problem for small developers who often do not have the funding or necessary team for sufficient marketing of their products. This can prove to be a large hurdle as centralized marketplaces have an interest in promoting affiliated, established, or wealthy developers over others, which can result in the market missing out on great and innovative products that were never able to see the light of day.
Blockhub is developing a recommendation engine that satisfies both, the needs of developers and end-users according to match criteria that takes into account frequency, history preference. This is a substantial step away from the current model of suggesting applications primarily to generate advertising revenue. The search of the future will be one without authority conditioned recommendations and biased results. Blockhub will enable game developers with integrity and quality products to compete for market-share in an open, free and accessible environment.
Conventional distributors often track their user-base in order to collect data to generate revenue, monitor traffic for administrative purpose, and for various other reasons pertaining to security. What users do with their apps is generally recorded, fed into a large database, and used for purposes of which users hardly have any knowledge. Depending upon the platform, that data may or may not be stored securely, and often becomes a profitable target for hackers.
Information stored over the blockchain is immutable, meaning data cannot be accessed, copied, or stolen as easily as through a centralized system. Although there can be a downside of not having paid professionals managing your data, the upsides are much greater and as consumer-grade software becomes better the necessity is reduced. An individual can still be targeted, but it’s uncommon as it’s often unprofitable. Blockhub plans to incorporates many third-party, as well as home-brewed models and provide essential tools for securing a user’s identity while allowing only the user to access, provide access, and authorize the usage of their data.
Digital marketplaces are often the property of large technology corporations. Their existence is often subject to government regulation and scrutiny, moreover, the larger a corporation becomes, the greater its tendency to avoid risks and adopt more conservative policies in its operations, restrict its services to a particular geographic regions, and even slow down all operations due to internal bureaucracy.
While government regulation is necessary and is an intended consequence of guarding social interests, enforcing certain laws, and promoting national security, there are many other reasons worth noting that regularly motivate policy-makers: corporate lobbying, anti-competitive behaviour, monopolies, and questionable political connections have often taken, and continue to take, precedence over the freedom of expression.
Blockchain technology represents the most vital method to bring equality and openness to the Internet through decentralized protocols, networks, and apps. Although decentralization as a paradigm isn’t something entirely new, the blockchain adds a further caveat to solve problems inherent to centralized systems: there’s no one in control.
Blockhub is completely open-source. Changes to the implementation of Blockhub’s protocol is directed by token holders. A share of authority lies in the hands of each individual user who may demonstrate their choice through public voting. This prevents power and control from accumulating in the hands of a small minority, and subsequently promotes behavior that is beneficial to the growth of the community of a whole.
*- * David A. Johnston
The point to take home is that blockchain technology, in its current conception, represents one of the greatest technological innovations since the dawn of the Internet. It represents a breakthrough in web protocol, data integrity, transparency, and more.
The problems of centralized marketplaces and data silos, of which we’ve seen but a few, may be considered as a broad topic of concern for all of society. When a vast majority of users face limitations; when there is an inequality in opportunity, the growth of the entire community is affected.
Alternatives like Blockhub offer an unprecedented paradigm for both users, as well as developers. The nature of blockchain technology makes possible many things that, a mere two decades ago, were bound only to the realm of science fiction.
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