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Microsoft Adds Blockchain Tools to Power Platform

It helps the cryptocurrency sector when the broader world begins to utilize the digital assets’ underpinning technology. Of course, I’m talking about blockchain technology. Therefore, it’s a great push for the decentralized asset when technology giant Microsoft clearly becomes a huge advocate for blockchain.

How is it an advocate? Well, it is reportedly making blockchain-based tools available to PowerApps and Microsoft Flow users. The news has come first from tech publication GeekWire.

Microsoft and Blockchain

According to the sources, Microsoft will announce plans for adding blockchain tools to its Power Platform at the Microsoft Business Applications Summit today in Atlanta. It has specified that AI and blockchain tools are the latest additions in the company’s PowerApps custom application builder and PowerBI business intelligence tool.

Microsoft’s Power Platform is a suite of tools that allows collaborators to build custom apps, to help automate workflows, and to analyze data. The suite consists of three tools: Power BI, PowerApps, and Microsoft Flow.

Microsoft Using Blockchain

The tech giant is not new to using blockchain. It has previously released several blockchain-powered tools based on its products.

Most recently, it introduced the new Azure Blockchain Development Kit specifically for the Ethereum blockchain. This aided developers who are building apps using Microsoft’s Azure Blockchain Service.

Also in May, it revealed that it is “building a decentralized identity network atop of the Bitcoin blockchain.”

>> The Latest in Cryptocurrency Regulations and the G20 Summit

IBM

Tech competitor IBM entered the blockchain arena earlier in 2019. It developed its own blockchain aimed at financial services companies like banks. Called LedgerConnect, IBM’s blockchain is a proof of concept blockchain platform that applies blockchain technology to a number of financial areas including sanctions screening, know-your-customer processes (KYC), collateral management, and derivatives post-trade processing.

What do you think about Microsoft adding blockchain tools to its Power Platform? Off the back of India’s proposed crypto bill, which will put cryptocurrency holders in jail, the crypto space needs more big companies to make moves in its favor.

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Aura blockchain

Aura Blockchain Ready to be Unveiled

According to reports, the AURA blockchain—which was first mentioned in March—is ready for unveiling.

AURA is a blockchain-powered platform that allows customers to verify the authenticity of luxury goods.

The team behind its include ConsenSys, LVMH, and Microsoft.

The AURA Blockchain

Owners of luxury brands Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior, LVMH, is key to AURA’s inception. The company is now hoping other luxury competitors will join the blockchain.

ConsenSys is a blockchain software technology company based in Brooklyn, New York. It teamed up with Microsoft to develop the technology that underpins AURA.

Now the group is encouraging other luxury designers to join the consortium saying AURA, is designed to “serve the entire luxury industry with powerful product tracking and tracing services.”

The group’s news release furthered:

“AURA makes it possible for consumers to access the product history and proof of authenticity of luxury goods — from raw materials to the point of sale, all the way to second-hand markets.”

The AURA blockchain works by storing unique information about every product stored on the decentralized ledger. Users can then use a brand’s official app to download a certificate which details the authenticity of the good.

Opera Adds Support for Tron

The AURA blockchain isn’t the only crypto news today.

Internet search engine, Opera, is adding support for Tron’s TRX and TRC-standard tokens in its browser-based crypto wallet.

Once the integration of the TRON blockchain is finished, users of the browser will be able to use those tokens within the browser.

The support from TRON also allows Opera’s 300 million users play Tron games and use its decentralized apps (dApps)—all within the browser.

Tron currently has over 400 dApps built on the Tron blockchain.

Opera launched its native crypto wallet in December of 2018 and already holds support for Ethereum and any ERC-20 standard tokens.

>>Bitcoin Price Jumps Again, Now Above $8K Mark

The web browser said that it has plans to add support for “multiple” blockchains in the coming year.

Do you think the Aura blockchain will help the luxury goods sector? Are you happy for Opera adding Tron support? Let us know your thoughts!

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Bitcoin is Getting Bakkt | ICE Forms Company to Bring Bitcoin Mainstream

Announced this morning is some pretty major news that Bitcoin bulls have been waiting for: Intercontinental Exchange (ICE)—the trading giant that owns the New York Stock Exchange—has a goal of breaking Bitcoin into mainstream currency and it plans to do this by forming a new company called Bakkt. 

Bakkt is soon to be launched by Wall Street’s major player, but it also joins forces with some of America’s biggest companies, including Microsoft and Starbucks. 

What’s Going On?

This morning ICE announced that its new company is expected to launch in November. Bakkt aims to offer a federally regulated market for Bitcoin, transforming Bitcoin into a trusted global currency with broad usage. 

Yowza.

As mentioned, ICE is not acting alone. The new venture also involves heavyweights in the form of Microsoft (technology), Starbucks (retail), and Boston Consulting Group (consulting).

Responding to the news, Maria Smith—Vice President of Partnerships, and Payments for Starbucks—said the following about the coffee-chains involvement:

“As the flagship retailer, Starbucks will play a pivotal role in developing practical, trusted and regulated applications for consumers to convert their digital assets into US dollars for use at Starbucks.”

>> Crypto Daily News: Coinbase Adds British Pound and John McAfee’s “Unhackable Wallet” Gets Hacked

Bakkt has a Job to Do

The main goal of Bakkt is to make Bitcoin a secure offering for the biggest global financial institutions that now mostly shun it. It wants to create a path for these major money managers to offer Bitcoin mutual funds, pension funds, and ETFs as highly regulated, mainstream investments.

ICE’s head of digital assets, Kelly Loeffler, will now serve as CEO of Bakkt. She had this to say regarding the company:

“Bakkt is designed to serve as a scalable on-ramp for institutional, merchant, and consumer participation in digital assets by promoting greater efficiency, security, and utility…We are collaborating to build an open platform that helps unlock the transformative potential of digital assets across global markets and commerce.”

Currently, Bakkt is in preparation for launch in November. More announcements are to be expected in the coming weeks, so stay tuned!

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