Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years, it’s impossible not to have heard at least a thing or two about blockchain and cryptocurrencies. They are the elephant in the room. In fact, in the online casino industry, they are the talking points. There is no way you’ll mention the word online casino gaming without the name Bitcoin – the most popular cryptocurrency – popping up.
People are notoriously stubborn, and most don’t want to fully understand the Bitcoin concept. And it’s understandable. Given all the terminology and math involved, it’s natural for people to feel intimidated. The silver lining is that unless you intend to make a serious investment in Bitcoin, you don’t have become an expert. Stay up to date, learn the basics and you’ll be fine.
What Is Bitcoin?
In the most basic definition, Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency (also known as digital currency) created in 2009 by an unknown person using the alias Satoshi Nakamoto. In contrast with the payment methods that involve bank operations, Bitcoin is totally virtual, which means it can only be created, stored and used for online transactions. But still, its value is growing from year to year.
Bitcoin is decentralized and operates using blockchain technology. This means that there is no middle man involved in the Bitcoin transactions. The time used to confirm a Bitcoin transaction is dependent on the fee as miners (those who create Bitcoin using specialized computing equipment) verify the transactions with higher fees first. Thus, the higher you set the fee – the faster transaction time you can expect.
Benefits of Bitcoin In Online Casinos
Bitcoin is the most widely used cryptocurrency for a few reasons. Unlike fiat currency – the regular money – Bitcoin transactions are super-fast. Deposits are instant and withdrawals never take more than an hour.
Most of these transactions are also close to being free and where there is a fee, they tend to be considerably lower. Chargebacks are not supported with Bitcoin, which makes fraud impossible. And when it comes to transparency, it never gets better than Bitcoin. Since no person or government controls Bitcoin, transactions remain anonymous if the owner of the wallet does not want to reveal his identity – which is why it is referred to as a “decentralized” currency.
In the context of online casino gaming, you must have heard of the provably fair algorithm. This refers to using an algorithm to “prove” the fairness of the Bitcoin game. It works in tandem with the traditional Random Number Generator, and its interaction allows players to verify if the game’s results are fair by using their own input (hash).
What advantage do provably fair games offer? To the online casino, it means that they can quickly add games to their sites since they don’t have to go through the long process of certification verifying the fairness of a game. To you, the player, it means you can check whether the game’s results are fair on your own.
How to Start Playing at a Bitcoin Casino
You cannot start playing at a Bitcoin casino without having bitcoins. There are three ways you can get Bitcoin; you can obtain them by mining, you can purchase them or receive them as a form of payment. Regardless of the way you obtain your coins, you need a digital wallet. You can have as many wallets as you wish, and different types of wallets. Your goal here, however, is to stay secure! Pick a reputable, trusted and regulated brand.
The most common way of getting bitcoins is by purchasing them from other users. This can be done through exchanges, which have wallets incorporated on their platforms. Storing significant sums on these wallets, however, pose a risk as history knows several cases of hacking cryptocurrency exchanges. The alternative is to use a personal online wallet account or ideally offline hardware wallets.
You can as well download software wallets, which are referred to as lightweight. It’s an option that lets you control your keys, but requires a higher level of maintenance. There are also paper and mobile apps wallets.
Once you have your bitcoins, the next step is to thoroughly research online casinos that accept Bitcoins. If you are an experienced online casino player, you probably have your preferences. For inexperienced players, or first-timers, you must consider the following aspects before picking an online casino that supports Bitcoin:
· Licensing and regulation
· Payment method supported
· Currencies available
· Diversity of game selection
· The reputation of the brand
· The services offered including casino games (slots, blackjack, roulette, etc), live dealer gaming, and sportsbook
Overall, you can opt to play at a more established and proven online casino that accepts both usual currency and Bitcoin. Or you can play at crypto-only gambling platforms. Regardless of what you choose, you need to ensure it warrants a safe, secure and fair gaming experience before signing up.
Once you’ve created an account, visit the banking section, select Bitcoin or any other preferred crypto allowed by the casino as your payment method, and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the deposit. In the best crypto casinos, Bitcoin deposits are usually instant and you can start playing immediately.
The Future of Bitcoin and Online Casinos
More and more online casino sites start accepting Bitcoin as a method of payment. Moreover, new crypto-oriented gambling sites are being created on daily basis.
Unfortunately, assuming that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with all their benefits will soon become the standard of payment is quite a premature idea. Many players are still content with the traditional methods of payment and only a few – the enlightened ones – are convinced they need an alternative method of payment.
However, there are signs that the cryptocurrency future looks bright. As more and more people know the benefits of using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, with enhanced privacy being the key, the more they shift to the alternative market. Only time will tell how big the cryptocurrency online casinos industry will grow, but it will undoubtedly be exciting to see how it turns out either way.
As Dragan Boscovic said; “Central bank authorities are busy developing regulations on cryptocurrency. They recognize that digital currencies are native to the digital economy and, as such, are on their way to becoming mainstream in the next 10 years.”