As bitcoin becomes more mainstream, an increasing number of industries are opening to the digital currency, including online gambling. In fact, the two appear to be a marriage made in heaven, offering gaming enthusiasts from around the world the opportunity to play without worrying about jurisdictional issues.
This is precisely the concept on which the latest bitcoin poker room to be launched is built. BurnTurn Bitcoin Poker was launched in mid-April in Beta format and features a variety of poker games. According to the company's CEO, BurnTurn was designed to create an online poker experience that would specifically cater to beginners as well as players that may not have access to the more traditional online poker websites. This could prove to be good news for players from areas where online poker has been banned as well as players are seeking more anonymity.
The background behind BurnTurn Poker
Last summer, BurnTurn Poker purchased Satoshi Poker, the bitcoin-only online poker room, through an auction held on BitcoinTalk.org forums. Under the terms of the purchase, BurnTurn Poker was given the ability to leverage all of Satoshi Poker's intellectual property and technology. The move came about in preparation for BurnTurn to launch what would become a new form of online poker experience. Online bitcoin poker experiences have become increasingly popular and competitive. SatoshiDice, a bitcoin casino site was sold one year ago at a price of $11.5 million.
Potential threats facing bitcoin online poker sites
While bitcoin online poker rooms may have become increasingly popular, that does not mean that they are not vulnerable to legal threats. Recently, the Attorney General of Nevada charged the operator of an online poker website accepting bitcoin with operating without a license. Seals with Clubs was shut down in February. This most recent case has made it abundantly clear that bitcoin online poker sites are not immune to operating completely without jurisdictional issues.
Why bitcoin online poker sites are the preferred option
Even so, the advantages associated with online bitcoin gaming continue to increase, driving more and more online gaming enthusiasts to consider giving the digital currency a try. Among those benefits is the ability to take advantage of near instant withdrawals. With fiat currencies, such as the US dollar, gamers must have someone process payments for them. This could be a money transfer service or a credit card company, but in either instance, the company processing the payment will typically charge a fee. Furthermore, that payment processing company is in control of a gamer's money while it is in transit. There is simply no getting around that. This means that when someone else is controlling your money, they can choose to hold onto it and this can result in delays that can take days or weeks to resolve. It's just not worth the trouble.
By comparison, this is not a problem with digital currencies like bitcoin. Since payments are processed with the use of technology, there is no need for a middle-man to control your money in order to process it or move it. Instead, the network handles your money, i.e. no one is going to hold you bitcoin while it is being transferred!
While this does not result in actually immediate transfers, it does help to speed up the process since transfers usually take a few seconds or minutes - not days. Opting to game using bitcoin instead of a fiat currency also allows gamers to save a tremendous amount of money in fees. In the end, this makes it possible for gamers to keep more of their winnings in their pockets rather than paying out their wins in expensive payment processing fees.
Thanks to the many benefits offered by digital currencies, particularly bitcoin, many advocates believe that it will eventually become the currency of choice for gamblers worldwide.