US retail giant Walmart has applied for another patent, which describes the management of smart appliances using blockchain technology, according to an application published by the US Patent and Trademark Office on 2 August.
The application outlines systems and methods for managing smart devices such as a desktop or server computer, a kiosk, a desktop device or multiple portable computing devices, such as wearable or gaming devices, laptops or portable media players.
From a practical point of view, users will use a device, wearable or not, which maintains the private key used to authorize a transaction. A case of use described was a kiosk to receive parcels from the delivery drones:
"… a user can get a kiosk and add the kiosk just obtained to the structure of the ledger distributed using their smart device for provide and / or authorize the kiosk In one example, the user's device can be a wearable device that keeps the private key used to authorize the transaction.The kiosk can synchronize with the user's device and be automatically prepared as a home delivery station and added as a device in the distributed ledger management system. "
The management environment will allow users to customize access and control levels for the kiosk, including the possibility of accept or reject a package or create and order an item.
To manage multiple smart devices, the blockchain server network considers the support of an Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem. "A resource in the IoT ecosystem can be associated with one or more roles and, therefore, is associated with a single role in the context of a single matching transaction," states the patent.
The patent also proposes to build a smart home environment, in which the described appliance management system can be used in a wide range of environments, such as home, media, production, energy, health care and many others.
Walmart is known for its proactive position towards the adoption of blockchain technology. In recent months, the retail company has applied for a number of blockchain-based systems, such as the "secure" delivery management system.
Other Walmart archives include a "Smart Package" system to keep track of package contents, environmental conditions, location, and other details, and an electrical network that will be powered by Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. Walmart has actively pursued various methods of blockchain applications for the food supply chain, the medical sector, the customer market and the energy consumption management system.