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Cryptocurrencies and Online Gambling


The online gambling industry is estimated to be worth around $40 billion globally. It consists of several niches, namely:

  • Sports Betting
  • Poker
  • Lotteries
  • Horse Race Betting
  • Mobile Gambling
  • In-play Gambling
  • Bingo
  • Advance-deposit Wagering
  • and Online Casinos

Any gambling conducted on the internet is understood to be online gambling. The first of its kind was the ticketing for the Liechtenstein International Lottery, recorded back in October 1994. It happened a short time after Antigua and Barbuda (an island between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean) passed the Free Trade & Processing Act, allowing for the granting of licenses to organizations applying to operate online casinos.

The online gambling industry has evolved quite significantly over the past decades. Until recently, players funded their online gambling accounts using conventional payment methods – predominantly credit cards. Players would load funds to their online gambling account, place their bets, then cash out their winnings directly to the same credit card. But most US banks prohibited the use of credit cards for online gambling, making online gambling somewhat taboo. And because attempts by US patrons to use their credit cards at online gambling sites were near impossible, Many third-party providers emerged, offering electronic money services as an alternative way of funding online gambling accounts.

Today, the use of cryptocurrency is a favorite within the online gambling industry. Online gambling platforms are at the forefront among industries to have adopted cryptocurrencies as a preferred mode of payment and disbursement. Cryptocurrency also adds to the convenience, privacy, and security for both the users and the online gambling platforms.

Cryptocurrencies offer valuable benefits when compared to fiat money (paper money produced by governments). Patrons are not required to share personal or banking information during transactions, deposits are near-instant, and the disbursements of winnings reflect in their wallets within the 24 to 48 hour processing period. Additionally, the leniency on geographical restrictions allows gambling enthusiasts to signup with minimal to no KYC requirements to expedite registrations.

It is essential that the online gambling platform you use is a well-vetted and trusted one. Hence, performing due diligence is of utmost importance to ensure that the service provider is operating legitimately within designated countries. Here’s a list of the top countries using cryptocurrencies as funding and payout methods, along with their revenue contribution toward the global gambling market:

Macau

Despite gambling being illegal in mainland China, Macau is Asia’s most significant gambling haven. It makes 50% of its revenue through gambling alone and made almost $38 billion in 2018.

USA

The US gambling industry is worth an estimated $261 billion, and provides around 1.8 million jobs. Most are based in Nevada, as most states have banned gambling.

UK

The UK market has seen steady growth with recent legislation changes. With an estimated 32% of the population gambling weekly, the British gambling industry made £14.4 billion in 2018.

Australia

A whopping 80% of Australia’s population gambles. A recent study shows that Australia gambles more than any other country in the world, spending around $18 billion a year.

Canada

Raking in around CA$17.3 billion in revenue every year from gambling, Canada saw its market grow 4.9% in 2017 – and it continues to grow.

The introduction of cryptocurrency options for online casinos has revolutionized gambling on the internet, witnessing an uptake in users who engage in the pastime. And with online casinos fully integrating cryptocurrency as a vital part of their business, the future of both online gambling as well as the alternative currency looks promising.