Bitcoin is a payment system that was invented by a man named Satoshi Nakamoto in October 2008. Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer electronic cash system and is a type of completely digital money. From a player’s perspective, Bitcoin is pretty much like cash for the internet. Bitcoin was actually released in January 2009 when it was implemented as open source code.
Bitcoin is often referred to as the very first cryptocurrency. However, it is more correctly described as the first decentralized digital currency. The Bitcoin system is peer-to-peer and users can transact directly without needing an intermediary. The world’s first Bitcoin transaction was by a programmer Hal Finney who downloaded the Bitcoin software the day it was released and received 10 Bitcoins. The Bitcoin protocol and the software were published openly so that any developer worldwide can review the code or make their own modified version of the Bitcoin software. Bitcoin transactions are verified by network nodes and recorded in public distributed ledger called the blockchain. This ledger uses its own unit of account, also called Bitcoin, which is the currency of the network. The US Treasury has categorized Bitcoin as a decentralized virtual currency because of the way the system works.
Bitcoin has grown since its release as a form of payments for products and services. Merchants that accept Bitcoin have an incentive to accept it. This incentive is because the fees are much lower than the typical fees imposed by credit card processors, which are typically 2-3%. Fees are paid by the purchaser, you, as opposed to the vendor like credit cards. However, the European Banking Authority and other sources have warned that Bitcoin users will not be protected by refund rights and chargebacks. This is something you should consider when depositing via Bitcoin at your chosen casino.
Nobody actually controls the Bitcoin network. Bitcoin is actually controlled by all the different users of Bitcoin all around the world. The developers of Bitcoin are always trying to improve it. However, they cannot force a change in the Bitcoin protocol, because all players are allowed to choose which software and version they want to use. For everyone to stay compatible with each other all users need to use software that complies with the same rules. Bitcoin will only work correctly with a complete consensus among all of the users. This makes it a strong incentive for all users and developers to protect the consensus.
You may be wondering how Bitcoin actually works. Well, from a player or a user perspective Bitcoin can be nothing more than a mobile app or computer program that provides a personal Bitcoin wallet. This allows the user to send and receive Bitcoins with them. This is basically how Bitcoin works for most users and players. We briefly mentioned earlier that the Bitcoin network is shared using a public ledger called a blockchain. This ledger actually contains every transaction that has ever been processed, allowing the user’s computer to verify the validity of each and every transaction. Each transaction is authorised and protected by digital signatures corresponding to the sending addresses. This then allows all users to be in full control over sending Bitcoins from their own Bitcoin addresses. In fact, anyone can process transactions using the computing power of hardware that is specialized. They can, in turn, earn a reward in Bitcoins for this service. This is often referred to as ‘mining’.
Bitcoin is growing within the gambling industry, with some casinos opening and operating purely in Bitcoin only, while the number of individuals using Bitcoin is also increasing rapidly. This is not just within the online gambling industry; it also includes businesses like restaurants and law firms. It is said that by the end of August 2013, just three years after its initial launch, the value of all Bitcoins in circulation exceeded US$ 1.5 billion, with millions of dollars worth of Bitcoins being exchanged on a daily basis.
Bitcoin payments can actually be much easier to make when compared to your debit and credit card purchases. Bitcoins can also be received without a merchant account. When you make a Bitcoin payment, it is always made through a wallet application. This can be either on your computer or your smartphone and tablet devices. You must enter the recipient’s address along with the payment amount and press send. Many wallets may even have a QR code, which you can scan to obtain the recipient’s address, making the transaction even easier and quicker. If you are looking at depositing at an online casino via Bitcoin, they may provide this QR code for you on their website. You would simply have to scan this code with your device and then all you would need to do is enter the amount you wish to deposit.
There are advantages of using Bitcoin. As we mentioned earlier, there are very low fees with some Bitcoin payments being processed with no fees at all. You may include fees with transactions in order to receive priority processing. This can result in faster confirmation of your transactions over the network. Another major advantage of Bitcoin is payment freedom. Users are able to send and receive any amount of money instantly anywhere across the world and at any time. There are no limits on bank holidays and no borders. This allows the user to be in complete control. As the users of Bitcoin are in control, it makes it impossible for merchants to force unwanted charges, which may happen if you are using another payment method. Bitcoin payments can also be made with absolutely no personal information tied to the transaction. This makes security and control yet another advantage of Bitcoin. Transactions made by Bitcoin are secure and irreversible and all the information that surrounds Bitcoin money is readily available on the blockchain for anybody to verify and use.
While there are advantages, there are, of course, disadvantages, too. There are still a lot of people that remain unaware of Bitcoin money. Many casinos still do not accept Bitcoin, which is why so many players do not even know what it is or what it actually means. Because of this, the total value of Bitcoins in circulation is still very small, compared to what it could be. Bitcoin is still under development and the services are still being developed to make it even more secure and accessible.
Bitcoin requires little trust because, as we mentioned before, it is fully open-source and decentralized. Payments can be made without reliance on a third party and the system as a whole is protected by a heavily peer-reviewed cryptographic algorithm. These are just like the ones you use on a daily basis with online banking. Even if Bitcoin is not for everyone, it can certainly be trusted.
To sum up, Bitcoin can be used to pay online at online casinos and other places and acts like any other form of money. Bitcoin balances are always stored in a large distributed network, which means that they can never be fraudulently altered by anybody and cannot vanish just because they are virtual.
Many users may wonder if Bitcoins can be regulated. It is possible to regulate Bitcoins in a similar way to any other instrument. Bitcoin can be used for any number of purposes, just the dollar can. This means that it is no different to any other tool and can be subject to different regulations in different countries. When it comes to taxes, Bitcoin is not a fiat currency with legal tender status in any jurisdiction, but there is a variety of legislation that could cause forms of tax liability to arise.
When the demand for Bitcoin increases, this is when the price of Bitcoin is determined. It’s purely based on supply and demand. To keep the price stable, the demand must follow a certain level of inflation. As Bitcoin is still small, it does not take large amounts of money to move the market price either way, up or down. This makes the price of Bitcoin very volatile.
Finally, receiving payment via Bitcoin is almost instant, but there can be a 10-minute delay on average before the network begins to confirm your transaction. Bitcoin is certainly something to look for in the future, as you may see more and more online casinos accepting it as a form of money.