Leading slot maker IGT has confirmed that it has acquired a patent to allow players to use Bitcoin to bet on slots.
IGT Confirms Crypto for Slot Gaming
Bitcoin is just about to go mainstream in gambling with International Game Technology Plc (IGT) announcing that it may be exploring cryptocurrencies as a payment option moving forward. The company, which is the world’s largest brick-and-mortar slot-maker with online overlays, is the developer of player-favorite titles such as Megabucks and Wheel of Fortune.
On Tuesday, IGT announced that it had received a patent to allow the transfer of player funds between gaming accounts and external cryptocurrency wallets.
In other words, consumers may now opt to move Bitcoin in and out of their casino bankrolls and store them on virtual wallets to play slot machines with. The technology allows consumers to scan a QR code to access their crypto funds and deposit them as a slot betting unit.
Commenting on these developments, company spokesman Phil O’Shaughnessy said that IGT has secured the patent in anticipation of times when regulated gaming will involve cryptocurrency and many consumers will actually prefer to play with Bitcoin over other solutions.
Adopting Crypto to Attract Younger Gamblers
One estimate is that the adoption of crypto on casino floors will turn gaming establishments into friendlier venues for younger generations and gamblers who are keen on using cryptocurrencies. It also opens the sluicegates for a whole new audience, which has mostly been sticking to online casinos accepting Bitcoin.
Millennials are now actively moving into cryptocurrency, with an estimated 44% of the generation planning to purchase cryptocurrency within the next five years based on a survey issued by Tokenist last year.
To put this in perspective, Caesars Palace in Las Vegas is already shaping itself up as a millennial-friendly space with a third of its guests aged between 21 and 40, based on IGT’s own estimates.
Institutional Investors and PayPal Spur Bitcoin Popularity
More importantly, Bitcoin has been growing in popularity and value, with institutional investors moving in on the currency and backing its value. Over the last week, BTC’s value has see-sawed but it’s now rising, worth $33,835 at the time of writing.
PayPal’s commitment to allow its merchants and consumers to complete transactions in crypto has spurred Bitcoin’s popularity further and given it a stronger push. Bitcoin is also used in online poker and online gambling apps at numerous established websites which have been running for almost a decade now.
Nevada is one of the states looking to introduce cashless payments with the Nevada Gaming Commission confirming last year that it would take the necessary steps to assess the validity of moneyless payment.
The Covid-19 pandemic has expedited this process, and on Tuesday, IGT also announced that it had obtained a patent to use cashless payment. Paired with the company’s readiness to adopt Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies to fund slot gaming, this could be an exciting new chapter for casinos and cryptocurrency owners.