In recent years, the frequency of the word Bitcoin has risen so much that it’s difficult to find a person who has not heard of it. However, for many people, it’s still only a word. At the same time, more and more gamblers recognize it as an ultimate currency to use at online casinos up to date.
If you are a frequent visitor of gambling sites but still have not embraced the cryptocurrency concept, we may be able to persuade you to reconsider. And if you are completely new to this world, all the better; it means that you can skip the previous experience people used to have in this industry and start gambling using the most advanced technologies at your disposal.
If you think that the goal of this article is to praise Bitcoin, you can relax. We will also point out its most critical disadvantages and what you should be taking into account. Ready, steady, go!
Benefits of Bitcoin for Online Gambling
- Transaction Speed
Transferring Bitcoin from one wallet address to another is considerably faster than relying on traditional payment methods. One can argue that this is not much of an advantage since credit cards already allow payments that are almost instant. And that is true, yet withdrawals for those can take from a couple up to five days, while with Bitcoin it’s a matter of a few hours at most even on the busiest days.
- Transaction Fees
The fees for Bitcoin transactions are extremely low, especially when compared to bank transfers involving fiat money. And even if you decide to sell your BTC for some fiat money at a cryptocurrency exchange, resulting in additional fees, you will still end up with more money on your hands than you would when gambling with traditional currencies and using bank transfers.
Bitcoin offers privacy not only to the players but to the gambling site owners as well. This is achieved by the absence of third parties in your dealings. So, you don’t have to fear of your money being subject to a chargeback, which tends to happen when using credit cards.
Security is another crucial point and the reason why blockchain and cryptocurrencies came to life. The way Bitcoin works prevents any chance of reverse transactions. Although this is great for security, you should keep in mind that you will not be able to get the coins you deposit back in case you transfer more by mistake or change your mind. You will have to either use the withdrawal option or just go with it and place your bets.
- Provably Fair Concept
The reason online gambling will never be the same after cryptocurrencies entering this world is because they brought the Provably Fair concept with them. And even though it was popularized by the crypto casinos, it can be applied on the sites with fiat currencies as well. Now, if you are a newcomer, you must be eager to learn what this mysterious concept is.
Provably fair games work in the following way: before the game is played, a user receives a hash, which is an encrypted outcome of the shuffle. During the dealing process, a user (or, in most cases, his browser) will issue a so-called seed, which is a randomly generated number not known to anyone in advance. The seed influences the hash, causing it to randomly change the card that is dealt. The player gets the card which was generated by combining the seed and the hash. Now, the gambler will receive decrypted hash that he received in the very beginning and see how it changes after adding the seed. If the results are the same as during the actual game then it means everything went fair and there was no advantage for the casino.
The process can differ for different games, but there are usually instructions next to the game, explaining how one can prove whether everything was fair.
Risks in Using Bitcoin for Gambling Online
- No Licenses
For a Bitcoin casino, receiving a license is not an obligatory step. Applying for a license is accompanied by the necessity to pay some significant fees, and many owners choose to skip this process. You would think this is not a reason for a gambler to avoid the said crypto casino. However, the provably fair games do not mean that there are no ways in which the establishment can trick you. Yes, you can check the outcome of the game, but there is no knowing what the odds were. Besides, some casinos can refuse to confirm your withdrawal for some reason or no reason at all, keep you waiting for your prize money to be paid out until you give up, or simply ignore you. This is the risk you should be ready to take, but to minimize it, read some reviews and feedback first, and test the site with little amounts before playing big.
- Exchange Rate
Since cryptocurrency is still evolving, and there are lots of new coins entering the scene, the exchange rate can jump up or sink down drastically over a short time. However, these things can happen even to fiat currencies. And if there is a cryptocurrency to rely on, it’s Bitcoin. Being the oldest and still trusted form of payment, it’s protected against sudden loss of value more than any other virtual money.
Despite the advertised Bitcoin anonymity, you will not be able to maintain it completely in most cases. This is because many online casinos request you to confirm your identity, which is done in order to prevent fraudulent activities with Bitcoin. And while you can avoid doing that by finding a decent casino that allows gambling without signing up, practically every cryptocurrency exchange will ask you to provide some ID. If you are planning to trade Bitcoin for fiat money at some point, be ready to do so. Nevertheless, even this pseudo-anonymity will be an extra layer of protection for your personal data, one you would not have using the legacy banking system.
The answer to this question depends on your country of residence. For example, in the USA, as well as in some other countries, online gambling is considered illegal. In fact, it’s a pretty complicated matter, because the federal law and the state laws do not always coincide in various aspects related to online casinos. In some states, this confusion isn’t necessarily a bad thing. You see, US citizens can still gamble online using Bitcoin without it being illegal. That’s because federal laws prohibit transferring money for gambling online, but since cryptocurrency isn’t defined there as “money,” it’s not subject to those laws. However, there are some states regulating the use of Bitcoin, so that should be taken into consideration if you do not want to break any laws and be punished with a serious fine.
The Bottom Line
This is the basic information that you should know about online gambling with Bitcoin. We tried to cover as many aspects as possible without making it unbearably long, and, hopefully, answered most of your concerns about this cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is not perfect, but its advantages and impact on the gambling world are undeniable.
It is a bit trickier than using your credit card which you are probably used to, but that’s a small price for playing some great games and winning money without relying on a banking system controlled by the government. If you would like to learn more in practice, check our Bitcoin casino reviews and pick one to try.