The online sportsbook industry has experienced rapid growth in recent years, not least because of the technological capabilities of desktop and mobile gambling. No longer do punters need to visit their local track, bookmakers or land-based casino to wager on the outcome of their favorite sport. Instead, with the click of a finger, consumers have thousands of pre-match and in-play betting markets to choose from, across a wide range of sports such as soccer, basketball, cricket, tennis and more.
With the online gaming market worth a reported $37.9 billion in 2017, it is no surprise that blockchain innovators are attempting to get their piece of consumer demand. This brief article will present a brief overview of Bitcoin sportsbooks, along with our pick of the best three platforms to open an account with.
Bitcoin Sportsbook: What’s it all about?
For the benefit of those who are unaware of what a sportsbook actually is, it is an online platform that allows you to gamble on the outcome of a sporting event. Markets have become so broad now that you will find odds on practically any game. The vast majority of online sportsbooks are specifically tailored for fiat currency deposits. As a result, the most common form of payment method used to fund an account is either by debit or credit card. In the US, players are even more restricted, whereby a bank wire is one of the few options available.
The key drawback to such funding methods is that the financial institution that processes the payment is effectively offering third party intermediary services. In layman terms, this means that the card issuer will charge the online bookmaker a fee, which is then subsequently passed on to the player in the form of a deposit charge, or through increasing the odds that they offer. On the contrary, as Bitcoin operates through a decentralized, peer-to-peer framework, transaction fees are practically zero. Furthermore, this allows users to deposit and withdraw their funds significantly faster. With market competition now fierce between the various Bitcoin sportsbooks, we have identified three reputable operator’s to get you started.
The mBit platform was first created in 2014 and holds its gaming license in Curacao. The website offers a full range of traditional casino games as well as its hallmark sports betting facility. The Bitcoin sportsbook also allows players to deposit with other cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum (ETH), Dogecoin (DOGE), Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). mBit have left no stone unturned as they offer pretty much every sport that you could think of, even water polo. Furthermore, the range of markets across each sport is significant, especially on NBA.
Deposits in to the sportsbook with Bitcoin are credited to an account after 1 confirmation – which is usually less than 10 minutes. Most importantly, withdrawals are usually processed and return to the player’s wallet within a few hours. 24/7 live chat support is available, however please note that the website does not allow users from either the UK or USA.
BetCoin are a rather optimistic gambling platform as they not only offer a Sportsbook, but also casino, poker and dice gaming products. Created in 2013, the platform operates out of Costa Rica. The Bitcoin sportsbook are renowned for their highly competitive odds across a large range of sporting events. A very popular feature to the Betcoin model is that accounts are credited on 0 Bitcoin confirmations, allowing players to start gambling immediately. Furthermore, each player is provided with a unique deposit address, allowing users to easily verify each independent movement of funds.
Withdrawal times are also healthy, and are often received as quickly as 2 hours from the initial request. Although a live chat facility does exist, unfortunately this is not around the clock, so you may need to submit a ticket if you require assistance. Nevertheless, Betcoin are known for their speedy replies.
CloudBet were established in 2013 and hold their E-Gambling license from Montenegro. The operator claims that they have the “world’s most advanced Bitcoin sportsbook”, which is available across both desktop and mobile devices. The number of sports available to bet on is comprehensive, and the platform also offers industry leading odds. CloudBet stands out as a leading Bitcoin sportsbook, with one its greatest features being that players only need to supply an email address to get started.
As an added layer of security, 2-factor authentication is available, and all player deposits are held in cold storage. CloudBet also offers instant withdrawals on most occasions, and has a live chat facility for customer support.