Following the launch of Ethereum Project’s Frontier developer release, UBS and Barclays have started experimenting with the open-source distributed computing platform. This network provides an incentive called ether, which is similar to bitcoin.
A source from Barclays told IBTimes that they are front-runners in exploring this kind of technology, as very few individuals are aware of how this could transform the banking industry. “You are talking about 100 or 200 people that are building stuff with this and some of them are from banks,” the source said. “It’s the beginning. It’s not even the end of the beginning. It’s the beginning of the beginning.”
Uses of Ethereum
For now, the bank is looking into how this technology can be applied in creating investment efficiency or for social good. The source confirmed that there are “pockets of innovation” in labs and accelerators, but that there are some challenges to using Ethereum.
For one, the platform is difficult to debut, most likely because the initial release is intended for developers rather than the general audience. He added that next generation ledger technologies can be tested as “shadows” alongside existing systems.
Ethereum is reportedly working on its next release which might be more catered to banking applications. According to communications officer Ken Kappler, the platform was “the only game in town for banks looking to build blockchains”. As it is, other banks in different parts of the globe are working with various blockchain startups in order to see how the distributed ledger can be used in their internal operations.
“There are several groups not directly affiliated with Ethereum investigating such a thing,” commented a spokesperson of Ethereum. However, many say that this system mostly hinges on whether banks are willing to work together or not, as a larger network could prove to be more reliable with a distributed ledger.