Why playing poker with Bitcoin will become the next big thing

The clear crossover between poker and cryptocurrencies became apparent again yesterday, with it being revealed that Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao had amassed his $96 billion fortune after being introduced to Bitcoin over a game of poker in 2013.

The 44-year-old, commonly known as ‘CZ’, is allegedly the richest man in Asia after creating Binance and the exchange’s native token, BNB.

The story is another example of how the two industries work in unison, although there has yet to be a Bitcoin poker platform that has truly taken off.

This might be about to change in 2022 and beyond as companies like Virtue Poker solve a strict regulatory landscape by offering players the chance to play with Virtual Player Points (VPPs), which can be obtained by depositing cryptocurrency.

We have already seen live poker events featuring Bitcoin buy-ins, with BTC Miami hosting a $1 million tournament. However, online poker has been slower to adapt to the trend.

One of the difficulties of Bitcoin is that transactions can take up to 30 minutes to reach a recipient, which can make it difficult for poker players to execute a cash game effectively.

One way around this is through the Lightning Network. As covered by Coin Rivet in 2019, the Lightning Network is a scaling solution for Bitcoin that allows users to transfer and spend Bitcoin instantly.

The most popular dApp on the Lightning Network is “Lightning Poker”, which lets users play for ‘Satoshis’ in a series of cash games, sit-and-goes, and multi-table tournaments.

The platform hasn’t yet thrusted itself into the mainstream, mainly due to regulatory concerns due to a lack of identification requirements, but it does present an important example of how the technology is there for players to play poker for Bitcoin in a fast and efficient way.

As all transactions are logged on the blockchain, Lightning Poker also reduces the risk of bad actors in the poker space by ensuring a complete level of transparency.

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered as financial advice. We do not give advice on financial products.

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