As giant financial institutions begin pumping funding to support blockchain innovators, Microsoft – an early proponent of bitcoin – has made a move that inches the market closer toward actually putting blockchain technology to use.
Recent reports in The Wall Street Journal said Microsoft has inked a partnership with Consensys. Consensys develops tools for Ethereum, which, according to reports, is a blockchain-like technology for bitcoin.
Microsoft will reportedly link its corporate users on its enterprise cloud platform, Azure, to Consensys’ tools, allowing businesses to develop applications that use this technology for an array of services, like corporate accounting and cross-border payments, The WSJ said.
The publication explained that Ethereum, which launched this summer, wants to act as a platform for more than digital currency. Instead, the company aims to arm companies with a platform through which services and products can be built, too. “Anything that can be digitized, cryptocurrencies, derivatives trading, securities trading and settlement, even property titles, is a potential service on Ethereum,” reports stated.
Business users of Azure will have access to templates – or be able to build from scratch – to make products to manage finances, settlement, accounting, logistics and more using Ethereum as the underlying technology. Reports said that Consensys will maintain the service for business users, while Azure will act as the portal through which users can access that tool.
Consensys Director of Communications Andrew Keys told reporters that he proposed the idea to Microsoft only months ago. He added that providing businesses with a platform for smart contracts, rather than only digital currencies, was the main driver behind working with Consensys.
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