Posted by TechTrade Asia on January 1, 2019:

The consensus seems to be that Blockchain is not only about cryptocurrencies, and interest in other industries is growing fast.

Blockchain was a key topic of interest over 2018, said Sophie Scott, Global MD of FleishmanHillard's Technology practice, quoting from the Tech Trends 2019: The Fads. The Fears. The Future. report from the company, which analyses 1 billion tech-focused consumer conversations on Twitter between 2017 and 2018, along with insights from technology thought leaders.

She noted: "Moving beyond cryptocurrencies, Blockchain could expand, supporting developments like smart cities and digital transformation. Discussion volume share increased 52% between 2017 and 2018 – and the opportunity for deeper, more forward-looking conversation is growing."

Finance is likely where Blockchain will shine.. first.

"Blockchain technology, especially, will see widespread adoption in the banking and financial service institutions sector. Its ability to speed up and simplify cross-border transactions allows for significant time and cost efficiencies," predicted Nilesh Mistry, VP, Head of Asia Pacific at World Wide Technology (WWT).

"Beyond that, it could also impact shares and other types of trading by enabling greater trade accuracy and a shorter settlement period, as well as smart contracts which enforces the obligations of all parties without the added expense of a middleman."

"The Asia Pacific region has become a hotbed of innovative Blockchain applications. The financial industry ranks as the main market for implementing Blockchain technology, with the transportation/logistics industry following a close second.

"It's important to note that financial services firms are deploying Blockchain to support mainstream sovereign currency processes—not the controversial cryptocurrency transactions that initially thrust Blockchain into the spotlight. Worldwide Blockchain spending growth among professional services and process manufacturing businesses is also experiencing an increase," said Matthew Kuan, Director of Solutions & Marketing, South East Asia & Hong Kong, Fortinet.

Max Kordek, Co-Founder and CEO of Lisk agreed. "I can see the institutional attitudes towards Blockchain continuing to shift in 2019 as rapidly as the technology itself. Mainstream business, traditional finance, and even government institutions will continue to both accept Blockchain into their everyday practices, as well as shape its progression through usage and regulation," he said.

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