According to UPS (United Parcel Service), blockchain technology can help streamline package delivery logistics across a global supply chain. The Century-old delivery giant has put up an application for a patent that could make use of blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) to route packages throughout an international supply chain. It may also include multiple carriers.
The patent application
The documents published by the US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) on Thursday states that the Georgia-based UPS had originally filed the patent application on February 16. In the application, they mentioned that shipping logistics providers have become quite adept to increase efficiency, minimize costs and optimizing package routes. It is not very easy for them to coordinate logistics for shipments that involve more than one logistics service provider transportation networks. Also, in the case of special handling requirements for transporting the shipment unit, it is likely that they may not be able to ensure that the special handling requirements are carted by each of the various logistics service providers that may assist in transporting the shipment unit.
The 110-year-old company UPS aims to tackle this problem in similar lines with those embodiments who are using an autonomous system like immutable blockchain ledger to automatically route packages through multiple logistics service provider networks.
The patent authors anticipate that the system could be built in such a format that it can accommodate interlocked DLT networks. The DLT Networks should be those using smart contracts to pay various parties within the supply chain. Also, their obligations should be fulfilled within a particular leg of the shipment. Decentralized cryptocurrencies like bitcoin or ether could be used by the system to handle those value transfers if built on top of a public blockchain network. These digital currency/assets (e.g., Bitcoin, Ether, and/or the like) could themselves have a value that may be exchanged for various shipment units and services or the like.