Recent research by YouGov, an international research data and analytics group, into the attitudes and behaviours of online gamblers in the United Kingdom has shown the strong relationship between people that regularly gamble online and those that have bought and will buy in future, decentralised cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
According to the YouGov data, the number of UK online gamers that are buying Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies increased significantly in 2021.
One in Five British Adults Have Used Bitcoin
A survey conducted by Finder in February 2021 found that almost a fifth (19%) of the British people interviewed said that they have bought cryptocurrency before. This is the equivalent of just under 10 million people.
The YouGov data revealed that one in seven British adults have used the digital currency Bitcoin in the last year and about a quarter had used Etherium (24%).
UK Adult Interest in Cryptocurrency During 2021
Across 2021, more and more people are joining the cryptocurrency investing and trading community and it is now easier than ever to start by using popular exchanges.
The high profile, news stories and rapid price rise of Bitcoin between the end of 2020 and May 2021 drew interest and investment in digital currencies from more of the public than ever before, including online gamblers.
The numbers of UK people that have been gambling with cryptocurrency investments like Bitcoin has grown fast through this year.
The Casino Sites Online team have looked at some additional data. We can see massive interest in the UK for cryptocurrency increasing in 2021 up to May, versus a relatively consistent level of interest in online casino.
Interest in cryptocurrency soared amongst the UK population during 2021, peaking in May which was one month after the price of Bitcoin hit an all-time high.
One month on and the price of Bitcoin has since dropped by over 40%. The data from Google is showing that interest in cryptocurrencies has waned as well, back to early 2021 levels.
Risk and Volatility Tolerance of Regular Gamblers
Gamblers are turning their attention from traditional online casinos to cryptocurrencies and betting on the prices of Bitcoin and others.
There are many reasons why casino players might want to find an alternative to regulated online gambling sites. The online gambling experience for some players during covid lockdown has been affected by additional, temporary licensing requirements for operators relating to player safety.
This has resulted in more gamers joining sites where they can buy or trade Bitcoin and other coins.
Regular gamblers have experience in making bets that do not win. They have greater acceptance of risk in the hope of achieving a favourable outcome than the general public.
Regular online gamblers are also more familiar than the general public with digital currencies. Depositing, wagering and withdrawing back to your payment method at online casinos all takes place digitally. This is another reason why British gamblers are more likely than the public in general to use digital cryptocurrencies.
What Will Happen Next?
Crypto is making its way into the mainstream in significant ways. Those not offering Bitcoin transactions may get left behind.
Established, global financial mega brands including Mastercard and PayPal recently announced began to accept cryptocurrency. This increased legitimacy for the reputation of digital currency.
Among the British adults that gamble online at least once a month, 17% told YouGov that they are likely to use some form of cryptocurrency in the next 12 months. This is considerably higher than the 11% of British adults in general who said the same.
With this level of interest, it will be impossible for gambling operators and the best online casino websites to ignore.
We should expect to see them and new casino sites make Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency deposit options available. Online casinos with decentralised money payment methods should become the norm in the near future.
Over the next few years, will we see casinos accepting Bitcoin payment methods for depositing and withdrawing become as common as casino sites with PayPal?
The online casino industry and gambling commission will need to monitor how quickly cryptocurrency usage is adopted by the UK population and provide payment options and casino games in a regulated environment that meet UK customers needs.