Trends can take all forms and affect all aspects of life, with some being more significant and having more impact than others. Fashion is an obvious one, but a particular trend during the last couple of years has been the gradual increase of public awareness of cryptocurrency.

What is cryptocurrency? 

The clues are in the word itself – ‘crypto’ means ‘concealed’ or ‘secret’, so payments between users are secure thanks to the technology essentially existing electronically, with everything being done peer-to-peer rather than via an intermediate agent such as a bank or other third party. 

Once the domain of nerdy types who the rest of the population would see as making too much of a fuss when making online financial transactions, the world of cryptocurrency has in during the last couple of years begun to establish itself into ‘normal’ life. Acceptance has been gradual, helped along by the increasing number of big name, popular companies that, one after another, stuck their heads above the proverbial parapet to give the likes of Bitcoin – the name most of the uninitiated are familiar with – a place in the payment options as an alternative to the usual methods with which we buy our coffee, bath bombs or fried chicken… Starbucks, Lush, KFC, Microsoft, Amazon, Pizza Hut – the list continues to grow and grow as we become more accustomed to the idea. In the UK, if you’ve had a good month at the online poker tables, you can now even donate to charity using Bitcoin – yes, if you want to help a good cause such as the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institute) you can donate to them via the cryptocurrency route.

It follows, then, that poker and online gambling fans are now opting to make their transactions using Bitcoin, for example. According to a report from SOFTSWISS – the first online gambling software company to begin using cryptocurrencies – there has been a significant increase in this latest form of transaction across online gambling platforms compared with this time last year. This is for a number of reasons, one such being that COVID-19 induced lockdowns that led to a boom of sorts in online poker and other online gambling sectors attracted more female and more young customers who in their everyday lives ordinarily use cryptocurrencies and are therefore more inclined to select the same option with online gambling. 

But the trend toward Bitcoin and others hasn’t been limited to women and the younger generation! It’s quite normal nowadays to see in print newspapers and the media in general in the UK, for example, guides to cryptocurrency and adverts for goods and services for which exclusive offers are available only to those who pay the ‘new’ way. The further cryptocurrencies get a foot in the door, the more mainstream they become and, compared with the pre-COVID era, we the general public – from where the vast majority of present and future online poker fans come – are now far more interested in (or, more accurately, less suspicious of) changing our financial habits.      

We can expect this shift to continue as both clients and the companies seeking their custom move with the times. Note that many online poker providers, for instance, didn’t initially have the facility – or inclination – to accept cryptocurrencies, so simply by virtue of this future-facing aspect of the industry being introduced the landscape is going to continue to change accordingly. 

What was once an ostensibly fashionable means with which to ‘secretly’ pay for something is set to become an acceptable and even desirable norm. With this in mind, you’ll find that at YourPokerDream we pride ourselves on being ahead of the curve in such matters, and we’re happy to help poker fans interested in using cryptocurrencies to manage their poker transactions navigate their way down what is ultimately a desirable path!  

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AngusD

AngusD switched from pro chess to poker two decades ago and has been professionally involved in the game on numerous levels since the very beginning of online poker, including playing as a poker ambassador both online and at major festivals around the globe. He has written much about the game over the years, and brings to YPD a wealth of experience in all aspects of the poker industry. Meanwhile, his many years on the pro chess circuit (he’s an International Master and prolific author) afford him an interesting perspective on the psychology of poker.

· Published 05.12.2021 · last updated 25.07.2022

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