Note: This piece was ghostwritten for a client. It is uploaded here purely for portfolio purposes.
ICON’s tagline is “Hyperconnect the World,” and it has a fantastic plan for doing so. By utilizing blockchain technology, the team behind this currency intends to combine multiple industries into one big network, allowing them to interact with one another as if they were the same.
What Is ICON & How Does It Work?
ICON has the goal of being one of the largest decentralized networks in the world, ensuring that communities around the globe can connect with one another regardless of location. Currently, their vision encompasses banks, universities, insurance companies, hospitals, and e-commerce. This, of course, will expand as time goes on, with the intention of merging them all into one network that allows each community to interact as if they were the same.
The ICON network is made up of multiple decentralized applications (dapps) that benefit their communities. A few of them:
Blockchain ID provides extra layers of security and even identification, ensuring communities, like the ones involved in financial security, can verify one another to ensure safety. The entire application works via smart contracts, allowing users to save time when working with banks for loans or even to a new account.
Payment & Exchange
Payment & Exchange allows businesses to send payments to other businesses in a different industry or community. Essentially, the ICON Wallet is used to make transactions almost immediately, allowing banks, universities, insurance companies, and more to work seamlessly with one another.
The ICON network can be used to build as many of these applications as possible. It runs on something called a loop chain platform, which connects multiple communities (each running their own blockchain) into one large platform called the ICON Republic.
At the hub of it all is the Nexus, which is the “government” of the entire network. Each community has an elected representative that communicates with the Nexus and other communities. All communities have their own nodes, since each has their own blockchain. They all operate independently of one another, each with their own rules and protocols.
Like many emerging cryptocurrencies, ICON has its own decentralized exchange. This exchange sets specific tokens aside for each community, ensuring they all have their own value and can trade with others. Exchange rates are set by an artificial intelligence, with the coin, ICX, used as an intermediary between each transaction.
The team behind ICON has every intention of expanding their loop chain network. They are breaking their plan down by industry:
They are starting by increasing platform security via Blockchain ID and other privacy dapps. By the end of 2018, they want to use it for settlements on the platform.
Automated insurance claims are the future with ICON. Advanced implementation ensures customers can make claims quickly and easily.
The banking community is working on a digital payment system that allows account management, pre-paid transactions, and increased ease of use with withdrawals and currency transfers.
The university team is creating a platform called U-coin that allows students to charge their day-to-day payments with cryptocurrency.
Known as the Precision Healthcare Information System (P-HIS,) this community intends to increase data purity and encourage data exchanges between hospitals for increased accuracy. Also, they plan on innovating the healthcare industry with H-sign, a digital signature system based in the blockchain.
ICON is actually the result of the work of many different teams. The ICON Foundation, which is a Swiss non-profit, hosted the ICO and is greatly involved in the community.
The loop helps with blockchain and smart contract development, as well as running and improving the Nexus.
DAYLI, which develops the DAVinCI artificial intelligence system that runs on the network.
Finally, there are multiple prevalent advisors and developers from the blockchain community working on ICON, including Don Tapscott, who wrote the best-selling book “Blockchain Revolution.”
ICON mostly uses their Twitter for promoting events and articles on the token. A few members frequent and moderate the subreddit, continually answering questions and providing new information.
ICX is available on quite a few exchanges, with Binance and HitBTC being some of the bigger ones. This is a coin that will probably end up on Kraken as time goes on, due to how much potential it really has. Community members predict this coin to be one of top emerging ones in 2018.
ICON has its own wallet, which is a Google Chrome extension that holds ICX and other altcoins. The wallet allows you to export settings should you want to move somewhere else, and provides a quick way to transfer coins between different wallets and exchanges. Otherwise, it can be stored on any ERC-20 compatible wallet, like Ledger Nano S or Meta Mask.
What’s Next For Them
The ICON team is working hard to provide these features for their communities. Connecting these different industries into one is a fantastic idea that could improve efficiency and safety during usage for all users. If things are to go as planned, this network will be an entirely secure way for users to engage in insurance claims, university payments, banking, and more.
That said, this is a bold idea, and it will require a lot of time and effort to pull off. Hopefully, the communities will form themselves and ensure a safer space for all.