In 2020, almost everyone knows what Bitcoin is. Thanks to its meteoric rise on exchanges in 2018, millions of people learned about it in the news. However, despite being widely recognized, it’s still far from becoming an essential part of the financial ecosystem, let alone being a leading payment method.
There are a couple of reasons for this. First off, cryptocurrency in general is not the most straightforward system to use. To a person who just heard about some mysterious altcoins in the news, all the talk about blockchain, public and private keys seems like too much.
On top of that, Bitcoin is seen as an investment tool, not as a handy method of making payments. Despite the promise of anonymity in digital payments, Bitcoin remains too volatile for a regular Joe to risk holding significant amounts of money in it.
However, the future where cryptocurrency becomes as standard for online payments as cash is offline may not be as far in time as you think. There’s one industry that does a lot to help promote Bitcoin, online gambling. In fact, if you read BitStarz casino review, the leading Bitcoin casino, you’ll find that it accepts a range of altcoins as well. Plenty of other casinos do so as well.
The most unlikely thing about the online gambling industry adopting cryptocurrency is the fact that the average age of a gambler is 45! Plenty of people who you’d never consider to be crypto-enthusiasts are adopting this payment method and this goes to show that everybody can do it. Here are the top five altcoins that are being adopted by the gambling industry.
Monero is one of the altcoins that improve upon Bitcoin’s ultimate offer, the anonymity of online payments. It processes payments through the bitcoin in such a way that they cannot be traced back to the original sender. This is done by encrypting the information that is processed by the blockchain network with a range of solutions.
No wonder why Monero is widely used for making truly anonymous payments, including ones at online casinos. Why does it only score in fifth place then? Because it’s a private, not public cryptocurrency, it was banned in several countries and exchanges due to illegal activity concerns. On top of that, Monero’s cryptography was recently cracked by a US firm, diminishing its main appeal.
This Bitcoin fork is quite an improvement on the original both in terms of privacy and transaction speed. Dash gives its users two options for sending cryptocurrency: InstantSend and PrivateSend.
InstantSend lets users send and confirm the transaction in mere seconds. PrivateSend takes longer, about a couple of minutes, but does not leave a trail in the blockchain network. It’s still processed through the network, Dash coins are just mixed with multiple others from different users to make the funds fully anonymous and untraceable.
This allows Dash to make it to fourth place on this list.
Another Bitcoin hard fork, Litecoin is basically Bitcoin “lite,” as the name suggests. It has a higher maximum cap and a much lower price as a result. The biggest edge it has on its parent coin is the transaction confirmation time that is nearly four times faster.
LTC was specifically made with this goal in mind. It only takes 2.5 minutes for an LTC transaction to register. Bitcoin users have to wait up to 10 minutes. The transaction cost paid to the node that processes it is also much lower, measuring in fractions of US cent.
These factors, along with its low price that means there’s less hassle with the decimals for the user, contribute to Litecoin’s popularity in online casinos.
Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
Bitcoin Cash is a hard fork of Bitcoin that was created to increase the block size and make transaction times faster. Due to the small size of the node, Bitcoin is rather limited in how many transactions per second it can process. By the time of BCH creation, the time needed to complete a transaction was so big, parts of the community started thinking about an alternative.
Bitcoin Cash became that alternative, focused on ease of use, not on holding a lot of value like Bitcoin. This is why it costs much less, around $300 as opposed to Bitcoin’s price of $23,000 at the time of writing this article.
This does come at the expense of blocks requiring more processing power to mine, which is contrary to Bitcoin’s main idea, decentralization. Parts of the cryptocurrency community believe this makes BCH compromised as some nodes may be controlled by malicious actors.
Despite this, BCH remains a handy cryptocurrency that gamblers use for small payments in dozens of casinos. The name recognition helps, too.
Ethereum is the second biggest crypto after Bitcoin. It also has quite an edge on BTC in terms of functionality and isn’t spoiled by scandals like Ripple is. This makes it a perfect choice for someone who wants a rather stable altcoin to make or receive payments, not an investment asset.
One of the things that makes it such an appealing option is the smart contract. This feature lets users conduct their deals safely. The script holds the funds until the conditions are met, acting as a guarantee of fairness. And an incorruptible one at that, given that it’s written in code.
This, and the fact that there are plenty of wallets that work with Ethereum, grants it the first place on this list.
Tons of online casinos are now starting to accept cryptocurrency and not just Bitcoin. So what? What’s the benefit for someone who isn’t an avid gambler?
The benefit of this mass adoption is structural, not personal. Even though you don’t benefit directly, tens of thousands of people, and not tech-geeks at that, are adopting cryptocurrency en masse. This normalizes crypto’s place in the modern financial ecosystem and helps it grow as those gamblers will take their Bitcoins to online shops.