Writing for Gambling Insider, crypto casino affiliate BTCGOSU walks us through the pros and cons of crypto casinos. We're always objective here at Gambling Insider, so stay tuned for part 2 on the drawbacks.
Below, though, part 1 discusses the benefits of crypto casinos...
Bitcoin, the world’s first decentralised digital currency, appeared on the World Wide Web in January 2009 as a peer-to-peer transaction network that records and verifies transfers on a publicly distributed ledger utilising cryptographic technology. Bitcoin, the term, is a compound of the words bit, the most elementary unit of information in computing, and coin, a round piece of metal that acts as legal tender. Invented by Satoshi Nakamoto, an anonymous person or group, it did not instantly amass a massive following, as most people did not understand this new tech when it debuted.
Two years after the inception of Bitcoin, Bitstamp, the world’s oldest crypto exchange, was established in Slovenia. It democratised the value of BTC units, leading to wider virtual currency adoption. In 2012, Satoshi Dice popped up on the internet, which according to many, was the web’s initial crypto gambling site, offering unregulated provably fair dice action. In 2014, online gambling regulators in the Caribbean nation of Curaçao decided to license crypto gambling. When that occurred, these platforms began morphing from simplistic websites with one or two games into traditional fiat gaming hubs in multiple aspects.
Today, various crypto casinos see loads of traffic, with media outlets reporting that Canadian rapper Drake has wagered cryptocurrency worth over $1bn in the first two months of 2022 alone. He has done so at Stake.com, the most famous crypto betting/gaming brand out there. Thus, it is clear that the crypto gaming sphere is slowly breaking through its niche status, slowly etching closer to entering the mainstream.
What follows is a quick rundown of the benefits and drawbacks of using crypto gaming sites, both from a player and operator perspective. Plus, a few mentions of the top crypto gambling giants in this sector.
Pros of crypto casinos
Due to their specific nature, crypto casinos have various advantages over fiat money casinos, primarily concerning processing speeds and anonymity. However, on account of cryptocurrencies developing a specific sub-culture packed with tech-savvy individuals, some of the community’s accepted concepts and beliefs have spilled over to the gambling side of things.
It is a popular misconception that Bitcoin transfers are secretive. That is not accurate. They get recorded on a public ledger that anyone can view. Though, each user has a unique crypto wallet address. Thus, unless someone has discovered who owns which one, it is impossible to tell who they belong to and from whom coins get sent and received.
Nevertheless, when discussing anonymity as it relates to crypto casinos, most players refer to the fact that when signing up with one of these sites, they seldom get asked to submit any private data, such as their real name and physical address. They can gamble via a made-up avatar, keeping their identity a secret from other gamblers and their chosen operator.
Although Know Your Customer procedures are a thing at many crypto gaming platforms, some have no KYC requirements or implement it only in cases where they suspect fraudulent behaviour, allowing players to gamble in secrecy. That is particularly true for provably fair sites that operate on a good-faith basis with their clientele, boasting no gambling licences.
Bitcoin transfer should happen in 40 minutes, at the most, depending on network congestion... Tron and Ripple are two altcoin blockchains whose currencies can often get used at crypto casinos. And they process transactions in seconds. So, in terms of transfer speeds, there is no contest between fiat and virtual money gambling sites. The same goes for payout limits
Provably fair technology
Provably fair verification systems were the backbone of the initial sets of crypto gambling websites. In lay terms, this technology allows players to manually verify an outcome's randomness: that it is 100% fair. Independent testing agencies vouch for the credibility of the products offered at fiat online casinos. Yet, at crypto ones, gamblers can ensure everything is on the up and up by themselves.
In the past, crypto casinos chiefly stuck to hosting only one or two simple provably fair games like dice, Plinko, crash, limbo and mines. These catered to hardcore digital coin fanatics, providing rudimentary graphics and gameplay. Nonetheless, once international regulators dove into the crypto gaming sphere, that opened up the doors for modern slots and live-dealer tables to appear on these sites, as now licensed crypto operators could work with established game providers.
Nowadays, it is fairly standard to stumble upon a crypto casino with a lobby home to over 5,000 games. That is so because most of these platforms have gotten approved/licensed by one of the four Curacao master licence holders. These are Curaçao e-Gaming, Gaming Curaçao, CIL and Antillephone. While these four bodies have been around for quite some time, they have lax technical specification criteria.
Ones that are not comparable to Gambling Commission or Swedish Gambling Authority standards. They pretty much work with virtually anyone that wishes to get their blessing. That allows their licensees to feature robust game pages, ones featuring quantity unseen in the fiat section of the industry.
Instant payouts & huge limits
On average, credit/debit card withdrawals at online casinos take from three to seven working days to go through. Bank wire transactions can take longer. And even though many sites advertise e-wallets as swift payment methods, most gambling operators facilitate payments through them in 24 to 48 hours.
Conversely, Bitcoin transfer should happen in 40 minutes, at the most, depending on network congestion. Though Bitcoin is the most renowned crypto on the market, it is far from the fastest. That gets mainly owed to its substantial number of users.
Tron and Ripple are two altcoin blockchains whose currencies can often get used at crypto casinos. And they process transactions in seconds. So, in terms of transfer speeds, there is no contest between fiat and virtual money gambling sites. The same goes for payout limits.
While traditional online casinos are all about deposit matches, crypto casinos look to diversify their promo arsenals. First, anyone would be hard-pressed to find a crypto gaming hub that does not feature a point-collecting scheme with multiple tiers. In such programmes, with each level ascended, casino users get access to better perks, like higher cashback percentages.
But VIP systems are nothing new. Crypto casinos seek to differentiate themselves from their fiat counterparts by aiming to stimulate a community presence on their platforms. They do so by implementing chat participation rewards, free faucets that let new users test games for free, organising lottery draw contests, advertising social media giveaways, and more. Furthermore, a new hot trend at these sites is that many have introduced mystery boxes, akin to video game loot ones inside their loyalty systems, letting players feel the thrill of gambling even when they get rewarded with promos.
Last but not least, there are actually a number of crypto casinos that literally share their profit with their users, in the form of dividends that are paid out daily. Players earn the casino's in-house token for every bet they place. These tokens can be staked and players receive dividends according to the number of tokens they hold.
Part 2 to follow...