The advent of the Bitcoin virtual currency in 2008 has brought about a whole new way of funding online casino play, with a number of top sites now either dealing exclusively in Bitcoin, or welcoming them alongside more conventional payment methods.
With some clear advantages such as guaranteed payments, anonymity, and instant processing, the days of Bitcoin casinos have only just started.
1. What Are Bitcoins?
The Bitcoin currency is unique as it doesn't exist in physical form, only within virtual wallets held by people across the world. To get hold of Bitcoins, users either buy them with credit cards or via bank transfers, using one of the providers of the coins, or 'mine' them by solving algorithms which releases new Bitcoin into the system. Once someone has their Bitcoins, they hold them in their wallets that are either supplied by online services, or generated themselves.
Stored either on individual computers, or central servers, there are no banks or government controlling the supply or use of Bitcoin, which is a clear advantage to anyone wanting to use them to play online casino games.
In many countries it can be difficult to process credit card or bank transactions to and from online casinos, but Bitcoin transfers are quick, easy, and carry low fees, if any.
Some territories do however, still maintain bans on gambling with Bitcoins, with the USA, Russia, China and India being among them. But as Bitcoins are not controlled by any central authority and there is no financial trace outside of the casino and the Bitcoin market, there is little that the governments of these countries can do to either stop their citizens playing, or trace whether they have actually played at all.
This opens up casinos that use Microgaming and Net Ent software for example, which is normally only available to players from specific territories, up to a worldwide audience. So while residents of countries where online gambling is restricted or banned can access Bitcoin casinos, they still need to understand any potential risks of doing so.
2. Casinos accepting bitcoins
2.1 Bitstarz Casino
Bitstarz Casino features software and games from SoftSwiss, Amatac and Endorphina, which gives players access to an impressive collection that includes lots of 3D effect slots. A number of Microgaming titles like Jurassic Park and Immortal Romance also make a welcome appearance here, and like all of their games, they have been independently assessed to be completely fair and trustworthy.
Players can wager in Euros or Bitcoins and €500 or 5BTC can be claimed when you register and deposit funds via JohnnyBet links, plus there are 180 free spins to claim. Even without a deposit, there are 20 free spins to enjoy, meaning you can join Bitstarz Casino and start playing at no cost. Each week, Bitstarz players can pick up a further deposit match bonus, and there are free spins on selected slots when you make a qualifying deposit on a Wednesday.
2.2 7Bit Casino
7Bit Casino meanwhile, has lots of Microgaming, Betsoft and Ezugi slots, table and card games to enjoy, and with other providers added in there is a total of over 500 titles. Hit slots such as Gold Factory, Avalon, Terminator 2 and Platinum Lightening are just a few examples of what can be found.
There are also live dealer games, and progressive jackpots that can be paid out either in Euros or Bitcoins. A great welcome package starts off with free, no deposit spins on the slots when you sign up through JohnnyBet links and continues with a huge €400, or 3BTC over the course of your first four deposits, plus 175 free spins on their slots games.