How we plan to build the world’s leading data marketplace in 2018

Last week we announced some big news. For a few months, you’ve been telling us that you wanted a roadmap with firmer timetables. Needless to say, your opinions are super important to us, so we’ve acted. In our monthly update vlog Transmission #3 I announced that Streamr will be delivering a fully functioning Data Marketplace by the end of 2018 if not before. This is a big challenge. To show you just how big, I want to underline in more detail what that means for the project and our community.

What is the Marketplace?

There are four pieces of technology that Streamr is built upon. The first two – the Engine and Editor – are fully operational. The Engine is there to refine real-time information and automate actions around its use. The Editor is a visual programming tool to help make it easier to take that data and turn it into something even more interesting. These two components currently run on a centralised version of the Streamr Network.

The Marketplace and the decentralised Network are what’s still to come. We’re going to be talking about the Network in March at an event in London. It’s here that we’ll showcase what it will take to go from our current cloud-based infrastructure to a decentralised version as mapped out in our whitepaper.

Right now, our focus is on the Marketplace. To un-silo the world’s data and enable monetary returns for the globe’s data generators (a.k.a. you and me), we need a space in which buyers and sellers can come together. That’s the Marketplace. It’s as simple as that. Our goal is to build the world’s leading data marketplace and that means it has to be effortless to use, draws together a large number of players who want to transact on it and supports today’s data-driven business models as well as future ones. It also has to enable developers around the world to build and create from it.

The road to market

Building the Marketplace is not simply a technical endeavour, (and that already comes with some tough challenges!), it pulls on all of our team’s abilities; our business acumen and our skills as designers and communicators. Let me explain these strands in a little more detail and how we will be bringing them together over the next months.

The technical challenges of building the Marketplace are detailed in our Whitepaper. But next week I will publish a Trello board which will give the Streamr community a more fine-grained insight into what we need to achieve, and what is still left outstanding both in building the Marketplace but also more widely to reach Milestone 1 in our roadmap. Shortly after that, developer Aapeli Haanpuu will publish the first of our monthly developer updates.

So, what are the other elements of this process?

Well, there’s little point building a marketplace that functions on a technical level if there aren’t buyers and sellers to populate it. That’s what our COO, Risto Karjalainen, is currently working on. We’ve been at invitation-only meetings such as SAP’s IoT accelerator event in Berlin over the last month, and privately, all C level members of the Streamr team have been meeting with dozens of companies large and small. What most of these companies want from us now is more in-depth technical help in order to create functioning demos and use cases. This takes resources such as devs and people with experience in forging partnerships. We recognised this need a few months ago, which is why we started hiring and looking of ways to expand. Of course, onboarding can slow project development as current team members spend their time training new staff. However, we may have found a neat solution. As I mentioned in Transmission #3, we should have more news on that in several weeks from now.

On the technical design and branding front, it’s progressing well. Our CDO, Matt Innes, has already presented first drafts on the re-brand which I’ve greenlit. He has also started working on the UI/UX for the Marketplace. We can’t wait to share that work with you as it nears completion. You’ll also hear a little more from Matt when our new Meet the Team videos are launched in two weeks from now.

Finally, the last element in launching the Marketplace is communications. Streamr needs to make sure we are not just communicating what we are doing currently, Streamr also needs to be able to market and evangelize about the Marketplace as it arrives. Our head of communications, Shiv Malik has reported that we’re about to sign a contract with a London based events marketing company who work for blue-chip companies, to help us do exactly this for the Marketplace launch.

I hope this gives our wonderfully engaged community some more detail about what’s coming up. And as you can see, it’s full Streamr ahead.