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Online Gambling Industry – worth some $40 Billion – Firing Up for Blockchain

The mainstream interest and new developments in Blockchain have now reached the point that, according to online gambling industry experts, Blockchain requires attention for all online gambling operators and participants.

From a recent article at Online Gambling:

“Following Bitcoin’s significant rise in the online gambling community, people are now looking at the underlying technology, Blockchain, which is having a hugely disruptive impact on the industry. The estimated $41 billion gambling industry has been created and now it is ready to embrace the Blockchain concept and realize the financial benefits of applying this technology on an industry-wide basis.”

America has already seen a massive rise in Bitcoin casino and Bitcoin sports betting sites on the web, and now new players and old alike are looking to improve issues of trust and transparency using Blockchain’s technology for their online gambling products. Trust has always been one of the biggest concerns for online gamblers, but now Blockchain start-ups are emerging which entirely removes this concept as a source of uncertainty. 

VDice is one example. It is billed as the world’s first fully decentralized gambling platform. It went live this June and is already wildly popular amongst Blockchain geeks. Using the Ethereum Blockchain, they have leveraged Smart Contract technology and have created game codes that exist without a server. 

From a recent interview with Blockchain Vdice founder Jason Colby:

The core vDice game is a classic SatoshiDICE (SD) influenced betting game, implemented as an Ethereum Smart Contract. So, unlike SD, it is fully decentralized with no server architecture at all. This is the next level of decentralization in online betting. This game is live, popular and already processing bets. It is out of proof-of-concept stage. The concept is already proven. By Phase 3 of the development roadmap we hit the “Pioneer” stage.

This is where we develop out the vDice brand and site as a platform for developers. At vDice 3rd party developers can write and show off their own betting smart contracts. We expect a lot of developers writing betting smart contracts for Ethereum. The incentives are too well aligned. But they won’t have the time and resources to do the other stuff; build a brand and make them popular. So they will use the vDice brand. It will help them a lot.


But there are other such startups such as Firstblood, who raised over US$5 million in minutes in an ICO. They’re aiming to build and launch their own gambling platform on Ethereum.

The competition is heating up because the potential rewards are huge. If music and publishing are any indications, then the proper disruption of online gambling could see it’s democratization.

With Blockchain being a decentralized system, built by a coordinated network of independent consensus nodes, no one individual or entity can have a centralized advantage at any stage of the gambling process.

Gambling companies can use Blockchain to assure their users they are completely incapable of knowing the result of an outcome – such as the dealing of a particular card – in advance. By removing the entire concept of centralization, and by putting the verification of bets in the hands of the network of nodes, the requirement for a third-party point of trust automatically becomes redundant.

André Wilsenach, executive director of the Alderney Gambling Control Commission has said that “shared, digitalized, decentralized” information in a Blockchain-based ledger system would provide regulators with significantly better access to required data.

And SportingBet founder Mark Blandford maintains the technology’s benefits to the anti-money laundering process:

“…everything is going to be auditable and traceable in a far more transparent way than has previously been the case”.

Blandford, who recently entered the Blockchain world by investing in Coinsilium, a Blockchain technology incubator, advised that people should

“…think about how applications of Blockchain would work in their particular branch of the online gaming industry”.

It has been suggested a number of times by various analysts that the installation of Blockchain technology can make online gambling more transparent and fair. Blockchain’s decentralized system, which is built by a coordinated network of independent nodes, allows no one individual or entity to have an advantage at any stage of the online gambling event. Removing the idea of centralization, and by putting verification responsibility on the network of nodes, the requirement for a third-party point of trust becomes unnecessary.


Richard Kastelein
In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, the Netherlands where he has set down his anchor to raise a family and write. Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015) and director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He has written over 2500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published in Harvard Business Review, Venturebeat, Wired, The Guardian and a number of other publications. Kastelein has an Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute software and Technology. He has over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division. Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology at over 50 events in 30+ cities.
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