JPMorgan Chase has recently tested blockchain payments between satellites orbiting the earth, executives at the bank told Reuters.
To run the space experiment, the bank’s blockchain team did not send its own satellites into space, but worked with Danish company GOMspace, which allows third parties to run software on its satellites.
The experiment reveals that digital devices could use blockchain for transactions. The Internet of Things (IoT), where devices connect to one another, is most associated with consumer electronics, including smart speakers like Amazon Echo and Google Home, and banks want to be ready to process payments when these smart devices start doing transactions autonomously.
Umar Farooq, the CEO of JPMorgan’s blockchain business Onyx, thought space was a cool place to try it out. ‘The idea was to explore IoT payments in a fully decentralised way’ Reuters quoted the CEO. ‘Nowhere is more decentralised and detached from earth than space’.
Blockchain is a shared digital ledger of transactions. Financial companies have invested millions of dollars to find uses for the technology. All in all, blockchain has yet to have widespread impact in financial services.