Bitcoin Sportsbooks - cryptocurrency sports betting and online casino sites
Okay, I have always been wondering … what is Bitcoin exactly, and why would I want to bet with it?
There is a very good chance that you have heard of Bitcoin at some point in the past few years. There have been millions of news stories, op-eds, and stock market excitement surrounding the new form of currency. Salient explanations, however, as to what Bitcoin is and how it works are, for some reason, not so common. Today, this changes … I am going to break down everything you need to know about Bitcoin, as well as why you might want to consider making it your currency of choice when it comes to online sports betting (especially if you live in the United States; but more on that later).
In the most basic sense, Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that was invented in 2008. Its inventor is, to this day, still unknown, but the freeware of its implementation was released in 2009 by a person or group of people using the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto.
Let’s take this one step at a time, though, shall we? Before we get too enveloped by technical terminology. First off, what is cryptocurrency? Aside from yet another one of those buzzwords you hear thrown around all the time without a definition, I mean. There are many different cryptocurrencies out there, Bitcoin is but one of them. Essentially, anything can be considered a cryptocurrency if it serves as a medium of exchange wherein transactions of “coin” (currency) are stored in a computer database that is highly encrypted.
The end result of this highly encrypted digital ledger is an extremely safe, virtually anonymous and untraceable (well, much less traceable than, say, the US dollar, anyway), decentralized monetary system. Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin bow to no bank, answer to no master. With Bitcoin, you are in full control over your money. Plus, with no central bank, say goodbye to long digital transfer times and pesky service/transaction fees.
So, that settles the what of the matter (while touching on the why) … but what about the how? How does Bitcoin work? This is another topic that often gets glossed over when people discuss crypto. Well, we can always get a little more technical if you like. If you find this kind of thing boring, no worry, just skip a few paragraphs down (I won’t be offended).
If you are still with me, though, this is (roughly) how Bitcoin works: Bitcoin can be sent from individual to individual (or from individual to business and vice versa) using a peer 2 peer Bitcoin network. It is not entirely unlike the way that, say, BitTorrent works in the context of P2P file sharing, but with bits of currency instead of video or audio files. Transactions along this Bitcoin network, then, are verified by a series of network nodes and recorded in a public ledger – this is called a blockchain. Due to the complex system of encryption involved, this ledger shows transactions, but they are not associated with easily identifiable individuals. Thus, a decentralized and anonymous means of conducting business.
In addition to buying or trading for Bitcoin, one can earn them through a process called “mining” (we won’t get that technical today … there are, however, plenty of resources around the web for you to follow up on if you are interested in Bitcoin mining – a quick Google search will do the trick).
Okay then! Welcome back to those of you who skipped over the technical section. I can’t say I blame you, but I do strongly advise that you have at least a rudimentary grasp on how Bitcoin works if you are considering gambling with it online. Just saying!
No matter what level of Bitcoin knowledge or interest you happen to be at, though, I am willing to wager that you will be enticed by this following tidbit: currently, as of the time of this writing, one Bitcoin is worth the equivalent of roughly $10,000 in the United States. Let us all take a moment to envy those smart, smart soothsayers who had the foresight to snatch up a bunch of Bitcoin when it was dirt cheap. What a blend of respect and anger I feel for you.
Although Bitcoin is highly volatile and its value is constantly in flux, it has been hovering around the $10,000 mark for quite some time now (although, at its peak one Bitcoin was worth $19,650 USD … this was in December of 2017). Economists and scholars dispute regularly over whether Bitcoin is the smartest investment one could make, or a bubble waiting to pop. I tend to gravitate more towards the “smartest investment” end of that spectrum, though.
Cool. You still have not answered my second question, though … Why would I want to bet on a Bitcoin sportsbook?
Nevertheless, when you place a bet on a Bitcoin sportsbook it can be like placing a bet within a bet. Given the volatile nature of Bitcoin itself, I find that this adds an extra element of fun to the whole ordeal. Not only am I betting on a particular team, score, outcome, player, etc., but I am also betting on what my currency will be valued at by the time I am ready to withdrawal my funds.
This adds yet another layer of strategy to the act of online sports betting that I find rather appealing. In the time that it has taken me to write this description thus far, I have watched the USD value of Bitcoin raise and lower several times over. It has not been anything too dramatic this time). Still, though, when it comes time to exchange all of that Bitcoin that you won from your Bitcoin sportsbook of choice, you are going to want to be strategic about how you time it. This style of betting is not for everyone. I get that. But if you are the kind of player who enjoys ever additional element of risk possible, Bitcoin sportsbooks are a surefire way to up the ante, if you choose to look at it as such.
This added gamble, though, is not the only benefit to using a Bitcoin sportsbook. Sports bettors from the United States should rejoice at their invention. Up until recently (thanks to the advent and increased popularity of Bitcoin), finding an online sportsbook that accepted US players from every one of the 50 states was next to impossible.
The harsh anti-gambling laws (namely the dreaded Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006) spooked most sportsbooks away from the US market. Cue the advent of Bitcoin, however, and the tables have turned. Now, online sportsbooks can accept US players with damn near impunity, given the anonymous, encrypted, and nearly untraceable nature of Bitcoin transactions.
Although a great deal of the more popular and well-known online sportsbooks out there are stubbornly a bit old fashioned, there are dozens of Bitcoin sportsbooks, many of which can’t wait to accept bets from American players. So, grab yourself some Bitcoin and start betting on sports today!
Betting on sports in the US, though, is not the only reason that one might prefer a Bitcoin sportsbook over a traditional sportsbook. As I touched on earlier, cryptocurrency gives you a greater sense of control over your money, as well as a greater sense of immediacy. When you are betting with Bitcoin, you are more likely to collect much closer to 100% of what you have won. With traditional sportsbooks, using national currencies and going through big banks and whatnot, everybody gets a turn at getting their grubby little paws on your earnings before you get to see it.
From sportsbook fees to digital banking transaction costs, you have to watch your earnings dwindle, little by little. On some betting sites, by the time your winnings actually make it into your bank account, you may have paid upwards of 12 or 15% of it just so that you can access it! Is that not absurd? Using one of the best Bitcoin sportsbooks, though, every bit of coin that you win, you take home. It’s just as easy as that.
Then there is the matter of how long it takes for you to withdraw your funds. Again, old-fashioned banking methods result in old-fashioned waiting periods. Most banks, even the biggest in the world, still make you wait between 3 and 5 business days before you will be able to access your cash. I don’t know about you, but when I win big, I want that money immediately! Bitcoin sportsbooks make that possible. Forget about 3 to 5 business days, how does 5 to 10 minutes sound to you?
What is the best Bitcoin Sportsbook on the web?
It would be nice, wouldn’t it, if I could just simply answer that question and be done with it. Unfortunately, as you may have guessed already, nothing is so simple as that. There are many factors one must take into account when evaluating a Bitcoin sportsbook (or any kind of sportsbook, for that matter). And the majority of those factors are ones that are more qualitative than they are quantitative.
Sure, there are a few objective aspects of Bitcoin sportsbooks that you could look at when trying to ascertain which is the best. Intuitive and user-friendly site design, for instance, is important. As is an interface and layout that is easy as easy to browse as it is to utilize (accessible bet slip, quick bet times, simple and streamlined bet browsing). Equally important, of course, is the spread of the sportsbook – making sure that the odds are good, that the site sees enough action, that it offers enough categories and markets to keep you busy, and so on and so forth.
You also want a Bitcoin sportsbook that is trustworthy. A solid customer support staff is essential. Ideally, your sports betting site of choice will offer some sort of 24/7 live chat should you ever encounter an issue (you don’t ever want to have to wait when it comes to money matters, right?).
Lastly, most of us rely heavily on our mobile devices, right? The best Bitcoin sportsbooks reflect that. In my opinion, if an online sportsbook does not at least offer a very mobile-friendly website, it is not worth my time. In an ideal world, your Bitcoin sportsbook of choice will have a smooth and fully integrated mobile app, but whether or not this is necessary is more a matter of personal preference.
Personal preference, in fact, colors a lot of what we are going to look for in these online sportsbooks and Bitcoin betting sites, as a matter of fact. Maybe you are the kind of bettor who absolutely cannot do without a sizeable politics or entertainment betting market. Perhaps you prefer mutual betting. One person’s notion of the best Bitcoin sportsbook may be another person’s least favorite. It all comes down to what kinds of bets you like to place, on what sports or markets, and in what way.
Can I start betting on Bitcoin sportsbooks today?
Absolutely, you can start betting with Bitcoin today. Some of these Bitcoin sportsbooks even offer complimentary Bitcoin just for signing up. Others will give you a risk-free first bet. What are you waiting for? Go forth and win some money!