T-Mobile has been quietly toiling away on an enterprise blockchain solution for months, and it looks primed to make a big reveal soon.
The telecom giant’s interest in blockchain was most recently advanced after the company was prominently mentioned for its role in helping develop Hyperledger Sawtooth’s 1.0 version. Yet, its overarching blockchain work is not widely known.
And while details are still being kept under lock and key, Chris Spanton, the senior architect of T-Mobile’s Hyper Directory, a blockchain proof-of-concept (PoC) that was quietly unveiled in November, told CoinDesk several milestones are in the works.
Each, he said, fits into the company’s larger push to take advantage of open-source software.
Hyper Directory, for instance, uses Hyperledger Sawtooth to control who gets access to which T-Mobile cloud-based solutions, a process called identity and access management, or IAM.
In interview with CoinDesk, he added:
“Creating Hyper Directory solved core IAM use cases we had in our cloud infrastructure, and building it as a blockchain solution provided unique opportunities to push forward our deep technical expertise.”
Open to open-source
A closer look at some of the publicly available information on Hyper Directory provides some valuable insight into how it might fit into T-Mobile’s big picture.
In Spanton’s first article on Hyper Directory, he described the PoC as a reaction to “several unique pain points” he had experienced helping T-Mobile scale its cloud solutions to large enterprises. Specifically, the directory is being designed to address concerns over who has access to do what in the cloud, when those permissions are active, who grants those permissions and how this can all be done without increasing complexity.
“How do we solve the ‘who is watching the watchers’ problem of auditing change management?” Spanton asked in the post.
Spanton then went on to describe a system of smart contracts that approves