- The first commercial telephone services were set up in 1878 and 1879 in New Haven and London.
- 5G is the latest technology within the telecommunication industry and has plenty to live up to.
- Blockchain in telecommunications is the application of a decentralized network to cater to several features within the telephony services.
Blockchain technology has earned its rightful place as a revolutionary concept in man’s evolution. Its entire concept has redefined several industries, providing better security and efficiency. As a result, developers have implemented numerous web3 applications in several industries.
In Africa, where this technology thrives, the local populace has taken a keen interest in web3, which has led to numerous developments. For instance, Africa’s fintech Industry is a by-product of developers embracing the concept of digital assets. In addition, the region has also embraced several blockchain-based applications, such as web3 insurance, blockchain-based Agritech and many more.
This article will focus on one of Africa’s largest economic industries, its telecommunication industry. Blockchain in telecom is a rising concept, and Africa has provided conducive conditions for decentralized communication to thrive.
Blockchain in telecom redefines our view on communication
Initially, many perceived the concept of a blockchain network as nothing more than a scam. Bitcoin, the first web3 application, received plenty of scrutiny and negative opinions. During its first few years, the concept of untraceable money seemed far-fetched.
It was only after Bitcoin’s value grew did individuals take notice. As a result, for some time, developers and innovators only viewed blockchain networks as a peer-to-peer version of electronic cash. This led to the birth of the fintech industry, but blockchain presented more value than we initially thought. Soon decentralization and automation, the core concept of any blockchain network, became the motto of the next industrial revolutionary that many did not see coming.
History of Telecommunication
The telecommunication industry is one of the oldest economic sectors in the world, only second to agriculture. Many believe that the telecommunication industry began during the age of Web1, but it stems as far as smoke signs in America and Africa. The telecommunication industry is how man has communicated. This encompasses letters, post mail, and the earliest delivery systems and many but the first electronic device within the industry came in the 1870s.
The first commercial telephone services were set up in 1878 and 1879 in New Haven and London. Alexander Graham, the self-proclaimed father of the telecommunication industry, redefines how we communicate. The telephone was the first spark, igniting the flames of innovation.
The use of telephone services soon grew after the first commercial services emerged. This led to the establishment of city telephone lines all over the world. The first transcontinental phone call occurred in 1915, but it was only after 1927 did innovators invent voice communication.The telecommunication industry would later thoroughly change after the establishment of web1. This expanded the reach of the telecommunication industry and soon developed minor branches such as the mobile industry. Communication became easier, and soon it interconnected the entire globe.
When web2 achieved global adoption, the telecommunication industry had to adapt, and video calls, social media, and other industries emerged from its backbone. This led to many companies emerging to dominate the telecommunication industry. Initially, the privatization of communication provided better devices as the competition was stiff.
The leading telecommunication organizations in Africa are Safaricom, MTN and Vodacom. Given the global scale of the telecommunication industry, it has arrived at yet another impasse that demands improvements. Developers have successfully implemented blockchain in telecom to present decentralized communication in the next iteration of the industry.
Understanding blockchain in telecom
Blockchain networks provide a fundamental aspect that web2 and web1 have failed at. Its decentralized and immutable nature has significantly increased data integrity and security. These elements have provided crucial improvements that the telecommunication industry required.
At its core, blockchain in telecom utilizes two technologies that are not too different. For instance, 5G is the latest iteration of the telecommunication industry, and its functionality is eerily compatible with blockchain networks. 5G is a prime example of utilizing blockchain in telecom given its reach, speed and autonomous nature.
In a nutshell, blockchain in telecommunications is the application of a decentralized network to cater to several features within the telephony services. Smart contacts offer users simpler processes, while still cost-saving for both service providers and the user.
Furthermore, the G network concept has consistently improved in a short time. This is a significant improvement but also highlights its high cost and the transition from 4G to 5G or 3G to 4G. Blockchain in telecom offers a decentralized communication system that is efficient and can run effectively without the need for additional parties.
A prime example is World Mobile, an organization currently in Zanzibar building a decentralized communication system that runs on a blockchain network. If they accomplish this project, it will set a hinge in the traditional telecommunication industry, showcasing its numerous flaws.
Use Cases of Blockchain in Telecom
One of the common aspects of both technologies is their sheer applicability. This web3 application offers plenty of benefits if implemented incorrectly. In addition, its efficiency will trickle down to the sub-branches of the telecommunication industry.
5G deployments and customized data plans
5G is the latest technology within the telecommunication industry and has plenty to live up to. With the world transitioning to a data-rich future, it is paramount to have a network that offers fast transactions. Developers have revealed that 5G will utilize smart contracts to streamline the provisioning between the network and the end user.
Furthermore, a blockchain network adds an extra layer of security. With this transition, safeguarding data will be a must criterion if any organization is to survive. Blockchain in telecom ensures organizations can live up to this expectation. Furthermore, decentralized communication is user-centred.
This enables the system to have a more dynamic take than its predecessors, giving more freedom to them. In addition, smart contracts are customizable to fit a certain group of organizations. This will require the implementation of private and hybrid blockchain networks, but its applicability is practical. These parameters can define the amount of freedom a user has. In addition, telecom organizations can offer customizable private services depending on the user’s need.
Establishment of Identity Service Provider
A core concept in a blockchain network is its ability to conduct safe transitions between entities with little to no information about each other.
This highlights how online identity is a vital component, and should not be shared. It also emphasizes the basic principle of NFT, where a user gains ownership of data and even metadata. A self-sovereign identity brings full control to the user and is a vital goal for any web3 application.
The telecommunication industry recently launched a similar feature called the eSim. This virtual sim card offers virtual identities for devices, data or users. Unfortunately, their system is still centralized and offers plenty of loopholes. Blockchain in telecom can address these flaws by providing a decentralized system built into the system of numerous mobile owners.
This ensures that an organization is alienated from any legal obligation to a user’s data and can only focus on the overall system. The eSim is merely a precursor to identity service providers, it merely lacked the establishment of a decentralized communication system.
Blockchain in telecom is an inevitable turning point for us. The world is transitioning to a more digital era, and now businesses, schools, and social lives have a digital footprint. 5G is the closest the telecommunication industry has to implementing such a system. Given the time and equipment, this web3 application may go mainstream before the ecosystem gains global recognition