SmartContract already has products ready upon which users can build programmable, trustless agreements.
One of these products, called Stabilized Bitcoin Payments, allows parties to agree to a payment in bitcoin at a set dollar rate. That way, the parties can use bitcoin as a payment method without having to worry about the digital currency’s volatility hampering the deal.
“I don’t need to hold bitcoin to pay a contract in dollars using bitcoin,” explained Nazarov. “I just get it in dollars, right when I need to pay.”
Another product is a contract for performing search engine optimization (SEO) work.
Parties can agree upon a set of SEO standards, and when certain performance levels are achieved with verifiable search engine data, these parties then exchange financial compensation for work performed.
SmartContract thinks SEO is a perfect use case for a trustless agreements, based on this type of easily verifiable data source.
“We think that’s really interesting because, on the one hand, payment only happens when performance occurs. And service providers won’t remain unpaid,” said Nazarov.
The final available product is bitcoin escrow around conditional payments. A good example of its application would be for bitcoin-based loans, a specific agreement on an escrow-based payment schedule.
Infrastructure is already here
There are a number of other startups working on smart contracts concepts. Ripple Labs’ Codius project, BitHalo and Viacoin are some examples, and there are others too. But most smart contract initiatives are still in the early stages of development, without tangible products yet available.
“I think some folks are waiting for other infrastructure to show up and solve their technical problems,” said Nazarov. “We aren’t [waiting]. That’s why we’re sooner than other folks.
SmartContract also plans to launch more programmable agreements soon and has at least two others in development, one for geolocation-based contracts using GPS data, another for real estate – both expected to be available in early 2015.
Perhaps more significantly, SmartContract could end up producing the infrastructure for smart contracts too, since very little exists right now. The firm’s thinking is, if there is technology out there for people to start using smart contracts, it will hopefully gain traction in industries that really stand to benefit – such as the legal profession.
“You don’t see anywhere in the technology industry people marketing infrastructure to consumers. You see applications providing value to users by providing infrastructure.”
So, one day, the company would like to produce application programming interfaces (APIs) that could be implemented in third party products.
“The APIs might come later. We are laser focused on getting people real world value. [This] solves a fundamental problem for them and their business,” Nazarov said.
Image via Shutterstock
- ^ SmartContract (www.smartcontract.com)
- ^ NXT (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ Data Collective (dcvc.com)
- ^ TradeBlock (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ JSON (en.wikipedia.org)
- ^ Codius (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ BitHalo (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ Viacoin (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ blockchain technology (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ NXT (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ Smart Contracts (www.coindesk.com)
- ^ SmartContract (www.coindesk.com)