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Blockchain Spending to Double in Africa and Middle East says IDC

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Blockchain Spending

New research from the International Data Corporation (IDC) indicates that spending on blockchain solutions in the Middle East and Africa is expected to double in 2018 as this new technology gains in popularity among both private and public institutions.

Blockchain Spending in Africa and the Middle East

The International Data Corporation (IDC) is an international research and consulting firm that recently published the Worldwide Semi-Annual Blockchain Spending Guide, which puts the total spending for this year from the regions at $80.8 million. This marks a 107% increase from 2017’s $38.9 million. The new research aims to quantify the emerging blockchain market by providing information on expenditure for ten technologies across 19 industries and 14 use cases in nine regions.

According to Megha Kumar, IDC’s research director for software in the Middle East, Africa, and Turkey, the demand for distributed ledger technologies is fuelled by the need for organisations to improve their efficiency, transparency, and integrity. He predicts most organisations will proceed from the proof-of-concept phases and begin deploying these systems on a limited scale in 2018.

Interestingly, some African nations like Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa are already exploring the use of blockchain technology to disrupt key sectors like transport, oil and gas, financial services, and land registry just to name a few.

Kumar states in an Africa Data article:

“In the Middle East, Dubai’s government has identified blockchain as a major technology for helping it become a leader in the Smart Cities arena. Alongside the establishment of the Global Blockchain Council, Dubai’s ‘Blockchain Strategy’ aims to promote efficiency in government services and fuel economic development. At the same time, financial services firms across the region are evaluating the use of blockchain for cross-border payments, trade settlements, and anti-money laundering purposes. In Africa, meanwhile, DeBeers intends to launch an industry-wide blockchain platform for tracing and authenticating diamonds, which highlights the integrity benefits of the technology.”

Future Projections

IDC projects blockchain spending in the Middle East and Africa to reach $307 million in 2021. The IDC report shows the bulk of the spending will be from the region’s public sector, an estimated $120.8 million by 2021, representing a 39.2 percent share. The financial services sector follows next at 35.5 percent and the distribution and service sector the remaining 14 percent.

The research suggests the most popular blockchain use cases in 2021 will be asset management, cross-border payments and settlements, and identity management. The three will account for 33.1 percent of MEA expenditure in 2021. Also, blockchain software solutions will quickly become the fastest growing category in the software space. Having said that, IDC predicts that IT and commercial services will account for 52.7% of blockchain spending in the region in 2021.

While this may be positive news for blockchain enthusiasts in Africa and beyond, Jebin George, IDC’s program manager for verticals in the Middle East and Africa, gives a sobering view saying:

“At this stage, it’s still early days for blockchain, with technology vendors, start-ups, fin-techs, and end users continuing to discover new types of use cases. Some of these may never go mainstream, stalling at the proof-of-concept stage as they fail to bring in the scale of efficiency that was meant to be achieved.”

Blockchain Technology

eCampus Integrates Blockchain Technology in Its Latest Update

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eCampus

The eCampus app has integrated blockchain technology in order to allow students across Ghana to ascertain how prepared they are before taking an examination.

This latest update is designed to honour the memory of the past United Nation Secretary Kofi Annan and his positive involvement in the educational sector.

What is eCampus

The eCampus app is an education-focused mobile app, making use of blockchain technology, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to help students learn and prepare for upcoming exams. This is done using a rewarding, fun and responsive interface.

The lasted updates to the 3.0 version of the app include:

  • Blockchain Integration
  • Test Prep
  • Course Suggestions
  • Lab

Blockchain Integration

blockchainAccording to a blog post by eCampus, the blockchain Integration on the app makes it possible for app user to gain points from the general usage and interaction on the app. These points are expected to be exchangeable for service or products offered on the app.

Furthermore, certification can be generated using the points received on the app. The certificate is usually in form of a digital badge. This badge, in turn, can be used to secure employment outside the app.

Test Prep

The app makes it possible for a student to prepare for various national exams by letting them know how well prepared they are to take on such an exam. This is made possible using the test prep feature on the app. All that is required by the student is to select the type of test that intend to take and the app provides them with a test matching the examination.

Course Suggestion

For a student struggling with the choice of courses to undertake. The latest version of eCampus also possesses AI features, making it possible for it to suggest courses which are relevant to the students based on the profile of such student.

Labs (Beta)

This feature incorporates the use of virtual reality technology to help students explore numerous laboratory tests connected to their field of study.

eCampus version 3.0 is available on Google Play Store, Apple App Store, and Windows App Store.

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Blockchain Technology

Block Commodities and Pure Grow Africa to Launch First Crypto Project for Ugandan Farmers

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crypto project for Ugandan farmers

Block Commodities, a commodity trader operating in Africa, has announced a partnership with Uganda-based Pure Grow Africa to launch the first crypto project for Ugandan farmers. 

The Pilot Ecosystem

Block Commodities Limited, a London NEX exchange-listed company whose objective is maximising value through the blockchain ecosystem, has announced a partnership with Pure Grow Africa Limited (Pure Grow), a leading supplier of high-quality agricultural products based in Uganda. Block Commodities and Pure Grow are working together to bring the first pilot of a food project commodity cycle ecosystem.  

UnbankedPure Grow Africa, started in 2015 and focuses on promoting communities to sustainable agri-business and agro-value chain development. It supports farms in Africa by embracing modern technologies and applications to promote economic growth as well as creating community awareness and shared values. Farmers who are with the company strive to keep to the highest standards of food safety, environmental and sustainable policies. To start, Pure Grow will introduce 1,000 farmers and buyers to the Pilot Ecosystem.

Block Commodities will implement and support the ecosystem by providing finance and fertiliser products, as well as supplying the technology.

It will also coordinate loans in cryptocurrency – in the form of Dala tokens – for the already selected team of farmers, according to a company press release. This loan will provide the farmers with cash to purchase fertilisers cheaply and with better repayment plans, which will then enable the farmers to increase the production as well as to scale up and become commercial.

The Food and Agribusiness

Pure Grow’s Director Bobby Juuko Kimbugwe, said: “We are placing smallholder farmers at the centre of our work; they are at the core of what we do. We want them to understand that they do not need to have money in their hands to be able to grow production. Block Commodities is the ideal partner to support growth in African farming.”

Chris Cleverly, Executive Chairman at Block Commodities added that he was delighted about the partnership and hopes to support small-scale farmers and advance the ecosystem.

According to the African Development Bank, the food and agribusiness market is estimated to reach a value of one trillion dollars by 2030. Therefore, highlighting the great opportunity for African agriculture to become a leading player in this market. 

If the pilot phase succeeds, Block Commodities and Pure Grow will introduce the scheme to 50,000 more Pure Grow farmers. Further plans for the project are to expand and cover other countries in sub-Saharan Africa in due time.

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Blockchain Technology

Top Five EOS DApps

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EOS Dapps

Since the EOS blockchain went live in June 2018, a number of EOS DApps (decentralised applications) have been released.

A decentralised application (DApp) is an application that runs on a peer-to-peer network of nodes that confirm transactions and support the network without a central party exerting control over the application. In this article, we will look at five promising DApps that have already been launched or will launch on the EOS blockchain soon.

EOS is a third-generation high-performance blockchain, supporting over 4,000 transactions per second. This high throughput makes the EOS blockchain scalable and enables it to support millions of transactions with zero transaction fees.

Everpedia

EOS DApps

Everpedia – based on Wikipedia – is as an encyclopedia on the EOS blockchain. Already, it is the largest English encyclopedia in the world. The applications incentivises people to appreciate and share knowledge, just as easily as they would on Facebook through the EOS blockchain. 

To learn more about Everipedia, have a look at https://everipedia.org/

ONO

ONO is a decentralised social media application that rewards users for quality content. The platform also ensures through its ecosystem that its users have a secure space to share insights and highlights of their personal lives. The most important feature is that users own their data and ads are optional for viewing on the platform.

Read more about the ecosystem on https://www.ono.chat/en/

Unico

Unico will allow its users to digitise items in a bid to make them collectable and tradeable. This will be possible through the creation of a digital certificate and using “licensing-as-a-service”. To every item with a digital certificate, a set number of tokens will be issued to ensure the item’s rarity and value, and also to enable users to buy, sell and trade their collectables.

Find out more on https://www.unico.global/

Scatter

Scatter aggregates your logins so that as a user, you do not have to use multiple logins to the various EOS dApps. This is an offer of security, personal data ownership, and convenience, as no user has to keep track of the passwords they are using and they will be able to interact with different applications as per their consent.

Scatter will support various blockchain protocols for a robust ecosystem and best of all, all these features are available for free on https://get-scatter.com/

Carmel

Do you want to learn to develop applications on a blockchain, but do not have a background in Computer Science? Do you feel that you need more technical skill for your future career? Carmel is an ecosystem built to empower people with skills in coding without requiring them to have previous academic experience in Computer Science.

The platform will enable learners to build websites, mobile apps, and other applications essential to users in the blockchain ecosystem. https://carmel.io/

It will be exciting to see the change in reach and impact of some of these projects in the coming year as the EOS blockchain ecosystem continues to grow and more users adopt the network and its applications. 

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