A Closer Look at Gartner’s “Cool” Blockchain Vendors

Technology research firm Gartner recently highlighted cool blockchain vendors. While some of these firms have made quite a name for themselves in the blockchain space, others are not so well-known. Factom, Gnosis and OpenBazaar have commanded headlines, while lesser known startups like Smart Contract and Synero might surprise some for having made the list. Here’s a closer look at the cool blockchain vendors, at least as far as Gartner sees it.

Factom

Factom wants to put land rights on the blockchain, though bureaucracies have been tough to convince of the potential for change. The startup has built blockchain-based software for mortgage products and titles, as well as for industry audit and compliance.

Factom believes their platform will allow developers to build a new suite of accountable and tamper-proof business systems in industries like insurance, financial services, medical records, or real estate – all systems where record keeping is essential.

Smart City management is in the company’s purview, as well. Factom believes that city decisions can be automated and based on sensor data. Factom is partnering to build Smart City Systems secured by blockchain so that data points are logged in a decentralized database.

Gnosis 

Gnosis is designing a prediction market combining capital markets with data science. “With the invention of powerful, peer-to-peer computing technologies such as Ethereum and Bitcoin, the scientific exploration of market-based forecasting can proceed uninhibited and at a rate and scale previously unimaginable,” writes Gnosis in its white paper. “Our team believes undoubtedly that prediction markets will disrupt some of the largest existing industries in the near term.”

It adds: “Looking forward, we expect that the Gnosis prediction market platform will form the basis for machine information economies on a global scale. In order for a prediction market platform to become truly disruptive, it must be universal and draw from a global liquidity pool. The platform must be decentralized, permissionless, and trustless for such a liquidity pool to exist. With these requirements in mind, the Gnosis team has selected the Ethereum network as the core protocol upon which the platform will be built.” In April, Gnosis raised $12.5 million by selling its native digital currency, ‘GNO’.

OpenBazaar

Open Bazaar is a well-known open-source, peer-to-peer e-commerce platform in which Bitcoin is the main currency. A fork of earlier proof-of-concept Dark Market, Open Bazaar envisages an Amazon or eBay empowered by peer-to-peer and blockchain technology.

OpenBazaar has received funding from venture capital firms. The platform has approximately 10,000 online listings from 300 vendors. Other than blockchain via its bitcoin incorporation, Open Bazaar routes information via a Kademlia-based Distributed Hash Table. Transactions between parties on the platform are built as Ricardian contracts. Escrow is done with bitcoin’s multisignature functionality. Open Bazaar also incorporates the InterPlanetary File System.
Approximately $4 million has been invested in OpenBazaar.

SmartContract 

SmartContract.com provides a minimalist approach to blockchain as a service, relying on an API to drive its platform. SmartContract puts the power of smart contract technology in the hands of regular internet users. By signing up for the website, users can create smart contracts not only on the Ethereum platform, but also on platforms like Town Crier and even on Bitcoin.

Synereo

The Attention Economy refers to the monetization of people’s attention spans, namely in digital media such as via content delivered across various mediums.

“Synereo’s set of decentralised solutions for content creators and curators will drastically change the economy of the universe as we know it” said Synereo co-founder and CEO, Dor Konforty. “We are honored and delighted to be named ‘Cool Vendor’ byGartner. Most of the top institutions have seen us receiving the honor.

Half of all existing AMPs have been destroyed by Tel-Aviv based blockchain startup Synereo in a move to relinquish its control of over half of the blockchain’s native currency.

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