Chat, App Stores, & Payments
This article originally appeared in HuffPost on 11/14/2017.
As we continue to see the need for decentralization permeate all aspects of our lives, of course, this will have to include some of the staples of our digital life that we have come to love and use daily: the app store. A place where you can browse, purchase, and engage with millions of others to accomplish particular tasks, such as browsing the web, making and splitting payments, browsing for jobs, signing contracts, and endlessly more. As the saying goes, 'there's an app for that.'
That saying is evolving, and it will become, 'there's a decentralized app for that.'
Because trust and security are paramount to our most sensitive communications, many people are moving to encrypted solutions to communicate, such as the app Signal, or Whats App with encryption. They are using other apps like Dwolla, or Venmo, to make peer-to-peer payments, but as we have seen, these apps still fall short of offering real trust and security because they lack genuine decentralization and are bound to the fact that they are a third party facilitator. No matter how hard they try, they are at best, a perfect middleman. I am not saying any of these services are not worth using, but, due to the centralized nature they all share, they will never offer the trust and transparency that a non-owned, fully transparent system governed by its users can.
Decentralization is the only way to be genuinely free of controlling interests and censorship, and as we make our way through the app stores of life, taking part in things like chat, job hunting, contracts, and digital payments, this becomes more and more important. In this day and age of NSA security breaches, we just cannot afford to put all our trust into centralized and vulnerable entities, including apps we use to store and transmit essential and private information. We will begin to see our app store require the same transparency and decentralization to ensure privacy, and true security. This can be true even for games, where in app purchases are required, or top scores coveted, and in need ft true protection from manipulation.
This will also Reinvent your physical wallet.
Furthermore, just as you may use payment apps, such as PayPal to make peer to peer payments online, many of you may have gotten a PayPal debit card to use at terminals while you are out and about during the day. The same will be required of decentralized cryptocurrencies as they become mainstream. The same shape and size as a credit card, new hardware wallets will allow users to store, send, and receive cryptocurrencies. They are immune to computer viruses that steal from software wallets, and ultimately, are eventually should be a requirement for cryptocurrency holders.
We are on track to replace all elements of our communication and trust-based transactions with blockchain based ones, and I aim to point out who I feel will be some of the key players in that new world here in this article series.
**Enter, Status. **
Based out of Switzerland, and fresh off an ICO raising more than $100M in less than three hours (!), Status is a decentralized browser and app platform with built-in chat and wallet functionality giving anyone access to the decentralized web. This platform's goals are preserving the right to privacy, mitigating the risk of censorship, and promoting economic trade in a transparent, open manner; Status is building a community where anyone is welcome to join and contribute.
“Focused on making decentralization a reality.”
“We are aware that there are challenges and there is a lot of work to be done, but our goal remains to create an Ethereum-powered world for all. We will continue to invest ourselves in the future of blockchain and push to build a strong open source community.” ~ Carl Bennetts, Status Co-Founder.
Not just a browser, Status is offering revolutionary solutions for the decentralized web, such as their Hardwallet. Users can sign up for the beta of the crypto-wallet to store, send, and receive cryptocurrencies with built-in NFC for wireless wallet transactions.
They also just welcomed New COO from Google. After successfully leading Google Maps and Google Flights products, long-time “Googler” Nabil Naghdy is joining the team as Chief Operating Officer. They also are promoting an open bounty with $1M bounty fund: Status Open Bounty launches as a bounty-based, open source collaboration tool for users to find, contribute, and receive rewards for code contributions. Status has pledged $1M for open source projects that will be released over the coming months.