Although most industries are now aggressive investors in crypto, one industry that has long been ahead of the curb is online poker. As an early crypto adopter, online poker sites are now some of the most active and innovative crypto-dealing platforms out there.
In fact, since the crypto boom in 2020, online poker has seen almost $100 million a month in cryptocurrency transactions. Among major online poker operators, this reflects up to 95% of their player base cashing out in Bitcoin (BTC). Arguably, an easier and more fun way to diversify one’s crypto exposure, crypto poker is poised to become a literal crypto game-changer.
Why Crypto Poker Has Gotten Popular
Although online poker itself is already a booming industry that’s estimated to be worth over $90 billion a year by 2023, it is still largely illegal in the U.S. As of 2021, only five states legally recognize online poker sites. This is because the Interstate Wire Act of 1961 prohibits gambling sites and banks from accepting and processing online wagers.
This is where cryptocurrency’s decentralization comes in handy. Because crypto is not regulated by any institutions or organizations, many believe that cryptocurrency may help legalize online poker in the future. Specifically, this is because crypto doesn’t rely on banks. Thus, sites and players dealing via these tokens rather than fiat money are not in violation of the aforementioned act. Furthermore, because cryptocurrency is receiving more mainstream attention from government agencies, its use in poker might just influence these same regulators to take a second look at poker sites. After all, if they want to regulate crypto, they’ll similarly have to recognize the platforms it’s used widely used on.
As an added bonus, crypto poker has also become popular thanks to its direct player benefits. By using crypto, players can complete transactions faster and pay smaller fees. On top of this, crypto poker can also be considered a less intimidating way to get gain crypto exposure. Traditional crypto trading requires direct selling, hodling, and buying which may be quite stressful. Alternatively, crypto poker gamifies the process and makes the prospect of earning more tokens more casual.
How Crypto Poker Is Moving Forward
Currently, while cryptocurrency and online poker are yet to be completely recognized by federal institutions, crypto and gaming are continuing to move forward together. One of the latest things in crypto includes Zynga Games officially allowing BTC for in-game money exchanges. As the biggest web-based gaming organization, this shows just how accepted it has become among gamers and developers alike. At the same time, crypto poker has now formally pierced the metaverse. Among the biggest innovations of 2022, metaverses like Decentraland are seeing over 50% of visitors flocking to their virtual poker rooms. In these rooms, Bitcoin and other tokens (including other in-game crypto and NFTs) are the gaming currency of choice.
So Should You Bet On Crypto Poker?
Although critics will say that crypto poker is just a passing fad, the trends and market interest say otherwise. With the proliferation of play-to-earn crypto gaming, the continued rise of online poker, and the continuous rise in crypto investors, crypto poker’s appeal seems to be long-term. Thus, in closing, while crypto poker shouldn’t be considered as a primary means to gain BTC, it’s definitely a worthwhile activity for those looking to make investing more fun.