As the world of blockchain technology grows beyond the initial crypto offerings, numerous blockchain platforms are trying to introduce new innovations in this field. Smart contract (SC) functionality is one of the most promising developments in the blockchain field, allowing developers to create complex applications based on the decentralised methodology.
Solidity is a brand-new programming language developed by Ethereum creators. It aims to simplify the SC technology further and make it accessible for global utilisation. This article will discuss the importance and practical use cases of Solidity, as it could be the next logical step in the evolution of blockchain.
- Solidity is the new object-oriented programming language that supports smart contract development on Ethereum.
- Solidity allows developers to craft SCs with unprecedented ease and efficiency.
- SCs are extremely valuable digital tools, as they can automate and improve numerous industries across the globe.
What is Solidity?
It is well known that Ethereum boasts one of the most feature-rich blockchain networks in the industry. Powered by the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), Ethereum allows developers to create smart contracts that harness the full power of blockchain. Thus, Ethereum has the technical capabilities to create SCs on its network, which is great news for the entire blockchain ecosystem, as it allows the technology to evolve and transform. However, constructing Ethereum smart contracts is easier said than done, as they require extensive programming knowledge and an in-depth understanding of the EVM protocols.
Safe to say, only a handful of programmers were familiar with the EVM architecture, severely limiting Ethereum’s popularity and value to the general public. After all, using smart contracts and their limitless capabilities becomes much more difficult if nobody actually knows how to develop a smart contract code.
To answer this pressing concern, Ethereum developers decided to construct a new programming language that would simplify this process and enable developers to build decentralised applications easily. Thus, the world witnessed the first version of Solidity in 2021, fully compatible with the EVM and smart contract execution protocols. In 2023, Solidity was launched in its full glory, offering a brand-new language for developers who wish to construct complex dApps based on the Ethereum network.
How Does Solidity Support Smart Contract Development?
Before Solidity, the biggest problems with smart contract development platforms were the compatibility, scalability and overall degree of difficulty. While conventional programming languages like Python, Java and C++ allowed developers to construct smart contracts, the process was clumsy, riddled with technical issues and quite complex for newcomers. Imagine working with a Microsoft 365 office ecosystem on a Windows 95 operating system. You will get the job done, but everything might take twice the time and twice the effort.
Thus, Solidity was the next logical step in simplifying the smart contract development process, as the limited technical capabilities constrained this promising field for years. Solidity has managed to remove complexity by directly linking the syntax and structure of the language to Ethereum’s virtual machine algorithm.
In simple terms, Solidity can translate written code into EVM commands with unprecedented ease and efficiency. However, the benefits of Solidity go beyond convenience, as this novel language has managed to stay familiar and accessible for developers that utilise Python, Java and other popular programming languages.
Top 5 Use Cases for Smart Contract Applications
So, the Solidity launch is a watershed moment in the grand scheme of blockchain development, marking a new milestone for utilising distributed ledger technology. The implications of building smart contracts with ease and efficiency can be game-changing for numerous industries across the globe.
However, for the general public, it is still difficult to visualise the smart contract use cases beyond NFTs and P2P payment platforms. So, let’s explore a few of the numerous practical applications and examples of smart contracts in various global industries.
The healthcare industry is one of the largest and most important sectors across the globe. Needless to say, the healthcare sector has received numerous improvements with digital technologies in recent years. However, this essential industry still experiences problems with data transferring efficiency and confidentiality. Simply put, hospitals and clinics still have no effective ways to exchange data across platforms and jurisdictions without significant delays.
In the case of healthcare, even hours of informational delay could have severe costs, including the lives of patients. With smart contract functionality, exchanging information will become much easier and faster regardless of location or digital platforms. Any two data centres will swiftly transfer data between each other, utilising the decentralised methodology. No more delays and interruptions in the data flow! Additionally, smart contracts execute data requests without showcasing a patient’s identity, which is excellent news for patient confidentiality and anonymity.
2. Business Processes
Another great use case for smart contracts is automating business processes like supply chain management. While digital tools and methodologies simplify management duties to a certain extent, they lack the ability to automate complex processes efficiently. With SCs, automating almost every process that doesn’t require subjective analysis will become much easier. Thus, every routine task can be converted into a code that will run automatically, saving time and money for business owners. This includes automating the inspection of received goods, conducting payments to suppliers, monitoring inventory levels and much more.
Retail companies have long suffered from inefficiencies in their business model related to customer rebates, discounts and inventory levels. Smart contracts run each function automatically, providing automatic rebates and discounts to customers by verifying their eligibility without any human intervention. Additionally, SCs can monitor the condition of retail stocks, placing timely supplier orders and ensuring that the company will never run out of highly-demanded goods.
DeFi is already one of the biggest sectors in the entire blockchain industry. Smart contracts have numerous applications in this field, including cross-border payments, simplified banking interfaces, decreased commission fees and faster execution across the board. Numerous banks and even federal institutions use smart contract technology to transfer funds and secure their cash reserves.
It is important to remember that smart contracts allow companies to enjoy the full benefits of decentralisation and blockchain security. In the case of finance, this is a huge benefit, as banks and other financial institutions can raise their security levels without sacrificing speed or efficiency.
Finally, smart contracts can tremendously enhance voting platforms across the world. Currently, numerous countries have reported cases of fraud and vote displacement, severely affecting the course of elections across different nations. Unlike the manual vote-counting system, a smart contract automatically executes voting procedures without ever needing to identify the voting parties individually. Thus, voters can enjoy complete anonymity without fearing that their votes will be counted incorrectly or manipulated by the voting supervisory committee.
Solidity is an excellent new chapter in deepening blockchain capabilities and introducing new utilities in the decentralised technology field. With proper execution and enough time, Solidity can become a go-to programming language for crafting smart contracts, opening doors to limitless possibilities. As outlined in this article, it is important to learn how smart contracts work since they can be applied to numerous industries and provide seamless automation combined with the security and anonymity of blockchain.