Telecoms and data centre services provider Colt has announced a proof of concept (PoC) to assess whether blockchain can help solve the problem of payment settlements between operators.

The initiative was put together alongside PCCW Global and Clear, a company which ‘builds blockchain-based wholesale services clearing and settlement platforms for entire industries, and the economies that support them’, in the firm’s own words.

During the recent Pacific Telecommunications Council annual conference, the PoC was able to settle payments for inter-carrier voice traffic in less than 60 seconds – a process that could otherwise drag on into weeks and months.

Part of the trial involved all parties implementing a bilateral private blockchain to record transactions which would be reported to a public blockchain.

Smart contracts were then used to complete the process, recording settlement transactions and resolving disputes.

If all goes well, the stakeholders hope to introduce a cryptocurrency model where operators could move to a token-based credit environment rather than exchange cash to settle transactions.

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