Building with Request
This is a regularly updated list of ideas for applications that can be built on top of Request.
Most of the invoices we pay today are email or paper-based. In a digital world, this makes invoices management hard and time-consuming.
There are strong opportunities to improve invoicing:
- Make it easy to share invoices: one application creates an invoice, a different app can detect an incoming invoice offer payment options. Invoices are share with concerned actors / apps instead of being duplicated. Audits are easier.
- Reduce cost by having the detection of payments happen on the invoice directly, thanks to the blockchain.
- Payment UX: the invoice is paid without context swapping. Thanks to the recent opening of the banking data and features, payments are not bound to the banks' UI anymore.
- Support & promote cryptocurrency invoices
- Transform invoices into smart invoices (programmable) and allow the use of escrow or advanced payment conditions.
- Improve data privacy by letting users encrypt their invoices end-to-end.
Accounting is one of the main pillars of the economy and is also one of the domains that has not evolved for a long time. We believe that accounting will evolve into an automated, real-time event which occurs entirely behind the scenes.
By plugging your system to Request, you will be able to provide your users with financial report in real-time. The integrity of the data is ensured by the fact that an invoice is only shared between concerned parties.
The combined revenue of the Big Four amounted to more than 134 billion U.S. dollars in 2017. The automation of accounting will make the activity of audit firms evolve in two ways:
- The blockchain technology will enable analysis of exhaustive databases instead of proceeding by sampling.
- The added value of audit experts will shift from transaction analysis to strategic consulting and advising.
We are interested in seeing startups design algorithms and processes to audit companies invoices on the blockchain through the Request protocol. By having access to the metadata of invoices you will be able to run an important amount of tests and analyses to detect financial or supply chain abnormalities.
Audit with confidentiality
We are used to a World in which we share a lot of private information to prove our integrity. You could think of the electricity bill you need to prove your address or your bank statement you share with tax authorities. Sometimes companies need to prove that they are up-to-date with their declarations and payments, for example for specific calls for tenders (like in the public sectore).
Request allows applications to prove an invoice is paid without sharing the invoice's details, not even the amount.
Before a business can sell its accounts receivable to a factoring company, there is a lot of information to exchange. The factoring acceptance status, as well as the payment status, and the fees bound to the process, represent complex data flowing across actors and systems.
The database of invoices within the Request network gives a simple way to view, share and sell invoices in a way that can be almost entirely automated, limiting the risks for the factor, and increasing the efficiency for the business entity.
Nobody likes to call a client every day for overdue payments. The blurry lines between unpaid and paid make it even harder: payment submitted but not approved, payment sent but not received, payment sent correctly but received with a different amount etc.
We can ease the debt collecting processes. If the information is properly stored on the same place, reconciliation duties are eliminated at root.
A salary is a type of request for payment that contains specific data. By allowing decentralized management of salaries on the blockchain, you will help reduce payroll cost, democratize crypto salaries and let users keep all their payslips in one place.
Think of all the data mentioned on a payslip that is shared between the employee, the employer, the payroll provider, the social & tax authorities... This sharing of data can be automated at the root: at the storage layer, from step One.
Expense reimbursement is nothing like fun. Even with the latest solutions, it is still tedious to claim reimbursements.
AI-powered ticket recognition is only a workaround - and a very expensive one! -, with the Request network, the expenses' handover's troubles can be fixed at the root.
It should be as easy as an e-mail forward. For example, when a person pays for his lunch, her personal budget app (or wallet) detects the payment request and prompts her for decision: Pay now? Forward to employer? Assigning the bill to her employer, she triggers the refund process seamlessly. The metadata (amount, VAT rate, date, merchant type...) is transferred from the bill's issuer to the expense payer.
POS & wallets for personal budgets
Bills and receipts have been in our pockets for quite some time, either as paper tickets or as e-mail attachments in our phones. The data is here but the analytics out of reach.
A mobile application could detect on the network all the payments you have made or been requested to make. It would work whatever your payment method and whatever the currency (crypto or not).
Request-based points-of-sale (POS) would be an easy way to help commerce, bars and restaurants accept cryptocurrencies, possibly without even noticing it. Request can match the invoice and payment without the usual cost from third parties. And it finally frees our pockets from tickets.
Online payments and gateways
Request helps driving down the cost of transactions while allowing anyone to accept cryptocurrencies for payment. In addition, the network will simplify accounting and buyers will keep their payment information private.
A gateway is the part of the system which allows the user to pay a request. Gateways can be integrated directly on your own website, or you can redirect to an existing gateway.
How will a machine requests a payment from another one? Which framework will they use? Where can we see the details of these transaction?
There are several frameworks you can plug your IoT device into including IBM Watson, AWS IoT, Google IoT, Azure IoT, Artik and Cisco IoT.
We are interested in seeing how you would plug a device directly into the Request Network to avoid sharing your private data with these platforms. We are also interested in seeing connections with these platform to realize a cross platform solution.
Having many people participate in funding a project is becoming more and more common. When popular crowdfunding companies take a 10% cut, there is clearly a lot of room for innovation.
We are interested in seeing people use Request for crowdfunding, ICOs and exploring how to have inter-operable crowdfunding between different applications.
Supply Chain traceability
There is a growing importance to know the details of what we buy. This importance is critical for businesses when selecting their suppliers, and for citizens when they pay.
What standards should be adopted by supply chain actors in order to make relevant information flow seamlessly?
How should a client access this data when buying a meal or product?
Each year, thousands of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) go bankrupt while waiting for their invoices to be paid. The European Central Bank, in particular, is setting up solutions for this. Startups can complete this solution by creating a payment reputation system using Request and key indicators. Today, a provider still has few information to trust its client, and might not be paid. Tomorrow, the provider will be able to verify the payers clients reputation and other indicators, such as DPO (Days Payable Outstanding) before agreeing to a contract.
Governments requiring companies to report all transactions could be creating errors and duplicates. On the Request network, actors can also allow governments to view the economy in real time and automatically collect taxes from VAT or other sales taxes. This money would be instantly declared or collected.
The public spending can then gain public visibility. Making the levies of taxes transparent is a real improvement.
As it would automate a lot of paperwork and ease audits, it will not only make businesses focus more on innovation but also make the public agencies more efficient and thus less costly.
We are interested in seeing startups work on projects with institutions on these subjects.
Revolutions come from the people.
Help detect inefficiencies and solve corruption by convincing NGOs and institutions to share their invoices on the blockchain in a transparent way.
Request empowers startups to build applications which analyse and visualize data to increase transparency. By doing so, these startups provide transparency towards communities which helps evolving our society toward more participation.
More information on why budget transparency is important :