This latest venture melds two of tech’s favorite ideas: the sharing economy, and the basis of Bitcoin—the blockchain.
The founder of Chinese ride-hailing firm Kuaidi Dache, now a part of the “Uber of China” Didi Chuxing, announced plans to create a blockchain-based ride hailing app Sunday.
In recent months, interest in blockchain, the technology underlying Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, has soared. At its core, blockchain is a database that can continuously add on new information.
Its allure though, lies in its decentralization. Rather than keeping this record with one party, the blockchain is a record, updating in real time, kept often by several parties. In doing so, the database becomes effectively unchangeable, and can also cut out the middle man in some applications.
Still, the founder, Weixing Chen, was sparse on details, according to China Money Network. Chen, who is working with Yang Jun, co-founder of Meituan, did not offer timing, or additional details on the project.
Chen and Jun aren’t the first to see a place for blockchain in the ride-hailing space. A Singapore-based startup dubbed MVLchain launched a blockchain-based ride-hailing app in April, effectively claiming to cut out the middleman. So while Uber has come under fire for taking about 25% of drivers’ fares, MVLchain claims to take a smaller cut, dedicated to maintaining the app.