We are delighted to announce that we have partnered with Ankr, a blockchain company building a distributed computing platform by utilizing idle computing resources in data centers and edge devices.

Harmony and Ankr will jointly develop technologies to create open infrastructure and power decentralized economies. Both teams plan to integrate certain Harmony-based dApps requiring advanced computing resources with Ankr services.

Chandler Song, Co-founder and CEO of Ankr, said, “Using the managed blockchain service of a public cloud means putting trust to essentially one virtualized pool of resources. Instead, we are excited to help Harmony expand to more distributed running servers through our cloud and edge, as well as resolve any computing need for their Dapps.”

Growth of Cloud

Cloud computing shares a network of servers hosted on the Internet to store, process, and manage data rather than on a local server or a personal computer. Cloud computing reduces cost while making data accessible to devices in the network at any time and from any location. Global cloud computing market was valued at $260 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach $411 billion in 2020, growing at ~20% CAGR.

Key Challenges for dApps Building on Cloud

Blockchain startups requiring higher computing power currently use centralized-cloud providers such as AWS or Microsoft. As a result, valuable data in centralized servers become more vulnerable to hack, compromising users information. By using centralized cloud-computing services, dapps may experience unexpected downtime and outage from power failure and data center offline even with the largest cloud companies. A few of the numerous examples include:

  • Yahoo data breach in 2013. More than one billion user accounts were compromised, including names, emails, dates of birth, and answers to security questions.
  • Hundreds of enterprise services hit by Amazon AWS Outage, March 2018.
  • Apple’s iCloud services suffered an extended outage, Oct 2018.

Why dApp developers building on Harmony and requiring high computing resources should consider Ankr:

  • High performance & cost efficient: Ankr leverages underutilized compute power in everyday devices, thereby bringing more machines to a task rather than bringing far more heavy machines to a task. This makes delivering computing task more economical and efficient on Ankr.
  • No outages: Ankr distributes storage and uses computing power from several connected devices thereby protecting against cloud outages and proving round-the-clock service.
  • Privacy and protection: The data in the Ankr will be distributed, cryptographically protected and hence no one can have access to the data except the client itself.

How dapp developers of Harmony can use Ankr’s cloud-computing services in their applications:

Unlike traditional cloud services where dApp have to get into the contract(i.e. locked-in) which restricts projects to switch between providers whenever they want, Harmony based dApps can use Ankr via open API tools without getting stuck in a vendor contract.

Millions of connected sensors and smart devices are being deployed on a daily basis in homes, cities, offices. Many new nodes are being added each day to networks. Today the industry is affected due to the challenges of interoperability between nodes, slow, difficult to manage large scale of data and a considerable number of them suffer from security holes.

Use of Harmony blockchain allows dApp developers to connect, communicate securely and form consensus quickly for billions of devices. The scale at which these IoT devices collect data requires an AI to perform quick analysis and decision making which requires high bandwidth for computation and storage. This time-sensitive data processing can be offloaded to Ankr.

Nick White, co-founder of Harmony, said: “Ankr’s decentralized cloud platform will be a key resource for Harmony’s ecosystem. By integrating with Ankr, Harmony’s dapp developers will be able to tap into a pool of idle compute which will be vital for running off-chain computations. The decentralized nature of this compute pool also maintains trust-minimization as compared to centralized clouds.”