Gambling is one of the oldest forms of entertainment in the world. Putting a wager on the outcome of an event — sports, political or anything else — seems to bring out the best form of competition in humans. But even the world of gambling has to evolve to keep up with technological innovations, and it seems like peer-to-peer wagers are the way forward.
Also read: Emerging From the Dark Ages: The Journey of Bitcoin and the Blockchain
No Account Registration and no Intermediaries
One of the things most online gamblers find really annoying is how it is mandatory on nearly every platform to create an account first. While it is understandable that certain companies are forced to collect the minimum amount of user information — depending on local legislature — it also opens up the platform to potential breaches and funds being stolen
Gambling should be all about placing a wager, transferring the funds, and waiting for the end result to collect profits or chalk up a loss. Signing up for an account, even if it just requires an email address and password, ruins the overall user experience. But there are platforms that let users gamble online without account registration, to great relief of the online betting community.
Traditional payment methods don’t lend themselves well to this ideology, though, as it is hard to keep track of deposits and withdrawals without an account tied to a credit card or bank account. This is part of the reason why online gambling platforms look to process alternative payment options, such as Paypal and virtual currencies.
Despite all of these payment options, one problem remains and may be much harder to solve. Whenever someone places a wager online, they will always be forced to transfer funds to an account or wallet belonging to the gambling website. In doing so, this website acts as an intermediary by holding onto customer funds for the duration of the wager.
This creates a major financial risk for both the gambling provider and the customer alike. Customers have to trust the gambling provider will return the funds to them — including profits — if their wager was successful. On the other hand, gambling providers are unwillingly attracting the attention of hackers looking for a quick score.
Finding a solution to this situation is not easy, as there does not seem to be any pressure to do so. However, a proper peer-to-peer solution would be beneficial to all parties involved. Developing such a solution may very well require the implementation of blockchain technology, which also powers the Bitcoin network.
Integrating Peer-to-Peer Payment Solutions
There are quite a few misconceptions when it comes to using peer-to-peer payment solutions. Popular payment options like Paypal are not a peer-to-peer form of sending money, even though you can send funds to anyone else directly. All of the funds changing hands within the Paypal ecosystem are in the custody of Paypal itself, as it processes any deposits and withdrawals through its own accounts.
Bitcoin, on the other hand, is a true peer-to-peer payment network, as no funds are held by third parties when initiating a transfer. Funds are directly taken out of account A, and the balance of account B will immediately reflect this change. No third-party is involved in any step of the process, and users are always in full control of their funds.
It is in the best interest of gambling platforms all over the world to integrate alternative peer-to-peer payment solutions such as Bitcoin. Not only will website operators be able to expand their customer on a global scale, but they will also be able to enjoy the benefits associated with lower transaction fees and instantaneous deposits and withdrawals.
What are your thoughts on peer-to-peer gambling platforms? Which is your favorite gambling site, and do they accept Bitcoin? Let us know in the comments below!
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