Why Walmart wants to store payment data on blockchain?
Walmart hints a plan to store payments data using blockchain technology.
The two applications - published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) - both reference using a blockchain-powered platform to secure the payment data, ensuring that private information can't be access by unauthorized parties. The same Walmart team drafted both applications, which were submitted on October 13 of last year.
Both applications specify that customers must be able to see their payment histories - but that third-parties need to be restricted from this degree of access.
Which applications Walmart wants to exercise?
The first patent filing, which describes a vendor payment system, proposes creating a network that's able to automatically conduct transactions on a customer's behalf. The payments would be received by one or more vendors - depending on what services are provided and who provided these services - according to the document.
The second application focuses on digital shopping systems and describes using a blockchain to encrypt payment information in a similar fashion.
The twin applications are the latest intellectual property play from Walmart. The company is seeking a patent for a "smart package" that would use blockchain as a way to encode information.
Beyond that, Walmart is also pursuing applications of blockchain for supply chain purposes, particularly for tracking shipments of food.