Public Cloud Providers Expand Blockchain Services
…an unalterable digital record (commonly known as a ledger) of each transaction in the absence of trust.”
Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst with Moor Insights & Strategy, said it was interesting that with its blockchain service, AWS will eventually support both Hyperledger and Ethereum.
“There will be two ways to look at this,” Moorhead told Channel Futures. “The customer won’t have to choose. Amazon will be offering both.”
The multiple choices also are another indication that AWS is making a substantial investment in blockchain, he said.
Blockchain works by creating a ledger that stores transactional records in which the data itself can’t be changed. Instead, the distributed ledger records changes in the transactional record so that any changes can be tracked as part of a chain. The data is encrypted. Blockchain technology not only can be used for business deals, but for any transaction between multiple parties where keeping track of changes and protecting the data is key, Moorhead said. He pointed to drug making in the pharmaceutical industry. Enabling the various players involved in the complex process of developing a drug to see every step in the process and trust they data they’re viewing is critical, he said.
Qtum CIO Miguel Palencia said in a blog post that partnering with Google Cloud will make using blockchain technology simpler and more intuitive.
“Where launching a node was once an intensive and complex process, Qtum’s new developer suite introduces helpful shortcuts and tools to make it faster and easier,” Palencia wrote. “With a more accessible technology, we hope to open up and expand the Qtum community to include people with a broader range of experience — from experts to the everyday user.”
The public cloud providers have been building out their blockchain capabilities over the past several years. IBM Cloud offers a broad blockchain platform available as a software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering. Azure has been partnering with open-source communities around Ethereum, Hyperledger and R3 Corda since 2015 to make those technologies available in the cloud and over the past year has been getting its Confidential Consortium Framework ready for public release.
The Azure framework uses SGX and VMS trusted execution environments that can be integrated into ledgers for greater security, Azure’s Russinovich said. The source code for the first version is available on Github.
AWS CEO Andy Jassy reportedly resisted embracing blockchain initially, but at re:Invent the company unveiled Amazon Managed Blockchain and Quantum Ledger Database, a fully managed database for ledgers used in blockchain transactions, tracking every data change and keeping a complete and verifiable history of the changes.