In recent years, there has been a growing trend for players to seek out Bitcoin casinos as a way to enjoy their online gambling entertainment.
The meteoric rise in popularity of this digital crypto-currency has seen more and more casinos either basing their entire payment format on Bitcoin or, in come cases, seeing online casinos offering Bitcoin as one of several currencies among the banking methods supported by the site.
In this editorial we:
- Explain what Bitcoins are.
- Explain how they are used at an online casino.
- Give examples of Net Entertainment online casinos which offer Bitcoin as a method of payment.
What is Bitcoin?
Created in 2009, Bitcoin is a digital currency based on the idea by the enigmatic Satoshi Nakamota (although this is assumed to be an alias and the true identity of Nakamota is unknown).
Two years after its creation, Bitcoin burst into the mainstream, operating in a peer-to-peer marketplace, unlike "true" currencies such as the US Dollar or the Euro.
Bitcoin is not a physical entity and is not issued in paper or coin form as other currencies are. Instead, Bitcoins are in the form of balances with public and private keys - strings of numbers and letters linked through encryption algorithm used to create the Bitcoins. Bitcoins are transferred through addresses made up of between 27 and 34 characters.
The creation of Bitcoin has enabled a new type of economy to grow outside the realm of traditional markets as we know them.
Although Bitcoin is a popular form of payment for online gamblers - and the rise of Bitcoin casinos has been quite phenomenal in the past few years - the currency is also accepted by some of the largest online retailers in the world (including the iconic computer group, Dell).
How Do Bitcoin Casinos Work?
Bitcoin casinos are becoming more and more popular among players who seek out these sites to enjoy quality casino games and pay for their fun using this crypto-currency.
Some online casinos use only Bitcoins, which means that funds that are transferred into the player's account are in Bitcoins, and rewards that are withdrawn are done in the same way. A large number of Bitcoin-only online casinos develop their own proprietary online gambling software, and earn the player's trust by disclosing how their algorithms work or through peer to peer reference.
Other online casinos offer Bitcoin as a legitimate currency on their cashier platform, along with US Dollars, Euros and others.
Bitcoin casinos dealing solely with this currency are the most popular choice for players compared to casinos that accept Bitcoin among other currencies - however, it will be a long time until Bitcoin casinos catch up to the popularity of traditional casinos.
While poker seems to be the preferred game at Bitcoin casinos, there are also hundreds of other casino games that can be played at these sites, including online slots, roulette, video poker, blackjack and more.
Advantages of Bitcoin Only Casinos
Running a casino on Bitcoin currency is an attractive proposition for gambling operators as the bottom line profits aren't hurt by banking costs (costs paid by the casino to payment methods such as credit cards, ewallets and banks, and usually absorbed by the casino).
In comparison, transactions with Bitcoin are processed for free - both for depositing and withdrawal.
As a result, Bitcoin casinos are then able to pass these savings back to their players through more generous bonuses and higher rewards. In addition, the payout percentages on games are typically higher in favor of the player than traditional online casinos.
Bitcoin casinos allow players to operate with maximum discretion, keeping requests for personal information to a minimum and only requesting email addresses so that password recovery can go smoothly if need be.
Bitcoin-only casinos will usually ask for some type of identification when players want to withdraw their funds.
The more traditional online casinos, where Bitcoin is one of several currencies supported, the deposit and withdrawal processes are a little different. Players who make a deposit using Bitcoin will be asked to pick a flat currency such as US Dollars to use when betting at the casino, although they will be allowed to withdraw again using Bitcoin once their gaming session is over.
Bitcoin Casinos Signing with Net Entertainment
A sure sign that Bitcoin casinos are becoming more mainstream and "acceptable" among online gamblers is the fact that large software providers sign casino game deals with them.
These software groups, such as the Swedish based Net Entertainment, recognize that more and more players are seeking the opportunity to play at Bitcoin casinos and are keen to share their portfolios with the sites.
In the case of Net Entertainment, which is listed on the Stockholm stock exchange, the group is answerable to its shareholders and can therefore not allow anything to jeopardise its good name and reputation. As such, players can rest assured, safe in the knowledge that any Bitcoin casino which signs with groups such as Net Entertainment has had its credentials carefully checked.
Most recently, Net Entertainment signed a deal with BitCasino.io - claiming to be the "world's first legally licensed and regulated online Bitcoin-only casino gaming operator".
Under the terms of the deal, Net Entertainment will provide BitCasino.io with over 150 top notch casino games and 30 mobile casino games using NetEnt's mobile Touch platform.
The new titles on this platform include some of NetEnt's most sought-after titles, such as Gonzo's Quest slot, Starburst slot, South Park slot, Blood Suckers slot and more.
Bitcoin has come a long way since it was first launched in 2009, and today it has received the recognition of many large corporations, leading software providers and online casinos.
Players will discover a world of discretion, ease and entertainment when they switch to Bitcoin casino gaming, offering them a fine alternative to traditional online gambling.