Is IBM’s New Blockchain-Powered Web-Browser the New Chrome?
Computing giant IBM filled a new patent application proposing a blockchain-powered web browser on August 6 via the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
According to the application, the peer-to-peer web browser will be in a position to collect pre-specified data as acquired during browsing sessions, which will be later distributed to a decentralized network of nodes for timestamping, authentication and storage.
Different types of browsing will be available and each type will collect different data depending on the type of session chosen. We can clearly distinguish the first 2 types of browsing which are tailored for personal use and business respectively.
While it is not clear as of yet if there will be more browsing experiences offered by the blockchain-powered web browser in the future, the above two confirmed types already have pre-destined scenarios for the collection of data generated by a user’s session.
Some of the collected data are subject to website visits, bookmarks, task performance, geolocation tracking, installed plugins, as well as security updates.
IBM says that a blockchain-backed web browser offers a way to store browsing data in such a way that privacy is preserved and placed in the hands of each individual ser rather than a third party.
In addition, IBM states that a blockchain-powered web browser is less volatile to cyber attacks, as you can retrieve your browsing data at any time, even if they’re completely deleted from your computer.
But, is it gonna work as promised?
The thing is that we’ve heard that one before with blockchain-powered digital assets such as cryptocurrencies in the past; and yet they are not only regulated and overseen by financial watchdogs and governmental institutions but, in fact, crypto users are obliged to provide transparency to “legal bodies” when asked.
Although I am a huge fan of IBM myself, I don’t believe that making a blockchain-backed browser will provide users with more security and privacy. Instead, it is a way to attract users who are bored with Chrome and/or other mainstream web browsers.
IBM has its own blockchain called Hyperledger among other DLT projects and blockchain generators. Yet, they are all private, they have no market value or position in cryptocurrency trackers such as CoinMarketCap or CoinCodex, and they are clearly managed by IBM personnel.
Most likely, the same will happen with this new blockchain-hyped browser that carries the IBM stamp on its face.
There are other browsers who attempted to promote a new web-browser focusing on privacy in the past, but let’s be honest here. A browser’s only job is to monitor when, where, for how long and why a user enters during his digital sessions.
Essentially, creating a new web-browser is trying to be a small Google, promoted through Google itself, and branded as “non-Google”-related.
Nevertheless, I am also hyped about this browser and waiting to test it in action. IBM cits that the browser will include a tokenomics system, necessary to verify a user’s browsing session as they are packaged into blocks through the decentralized network.
Does this lead to an IBM cryptocurrency that’s more “official” compared to Stellar (XLM), that everyone seems to attach to IBM every time it’s mentioned?
While we cannot confirm that, we’re having our own questions such as:
- Will the token work similar to how MetaMask or similar wallet systems work with Chrome? Or will it be an essential part of the browser interface itself?
- Do you have to install it on your own, or is it pre-installed with the browser?
- Do you have to be aware of how blockchain technology works, and tokenomics in order to use the browser or it will be oriented for the typical YouTube user?
We’re following the development of the mentioned patent and we’ll update you with the latest news on this new blockchain-powered Chrome combatant.
In the meantime, you can check our article about IBM’s blockchain solution that’s designed to disrupt the supply-chain industry.