NFTs in iGaming: how can the new technology be used in the iGaming industry?
NFTs have stepped into the spotlight. The varied applications of non-fungible tokens have seen them spread into a number of industries — iGaming included. Is now the time to open an NFT casino? Slotegrator shares its opinion and forecast.
Why are NFTs gaining popularity? First of all, they’re a massive trend. Celebrities buy and sell them, famous pieces of art are being tokenized, and blogger creators promote them as a way to earn sums that are not limited by market norms, but by audience imagination.
NFT in the iGaming industry
But what role does NFT technology play in the iGaming industry? To start with, NFTs can be used as in-game tokens and to place deposits, but they can also be a reward in themselves. Casino and sportsbook platform BC.Game, for example, already accepts NFT deposits.
Since NFTs are decentralized and independent, they can be used anywhere, without any limits, which is appreciated by players who have trouble accessing traditional payment methods.
NFTs are powered by blockchain technology, which stores information about ownership, providing a high level of transparency. This concept is also used in the new trend of provably fair games, where players can verify that their results were governed by a smart contract code, and not influenced or manipulated by humans.
One more function of NFTs in iGaming is to grant access to casinos, such as in the metaverse, or membership in loyalty or VIP programs with special bonuses, tournaments, or jackpots. This function is also a good tool in terms of security — it can assist in self-exclusion or help to block access for minors.
Another interesting use of NFTs is letting players become a part of the business: players can purchase their own slot machine in the metaverse as an NFT. If users own their own virtual slot machine, poker table or even casino, they can benefit from them as business owners. There is one catch, though: metaverses still have no gambling regulation, meaning “casino owners” have no obligations to fulfill.
NFT casinos also appeal to a wider audience: younger generations will play because besides the traditional motives to gamble, they’re very interested in collecting digital assets. In general, NFT is an incredible way of sharing content. But what about regulations?
The European Union has yet to establish a definition of NFTs, but is planning to regulate them in the same way as cryptocurrencies: authorities are closely scrutinizing decentralized financing out of concerns about money laundering, fraud, and the financing of terrorism, which means European businesses can expect new regulation at some point.
Since NFTs are a relatively new concept, even though their popularity is skyrocketing, regulations still need to be worked out — unlike cryptocurrencies, which have already been given due consideration in many countries.
NFTs are assets, and while profits or losses from the sale or purchase of assets are normally subject to taxation, taxation for NFTs has yet to be clearly established. Whereas taxes on gains from trading cryptocurrencies are usually applied in the owner’s country of residence, there are few — if any — comparable practices for NFTs.
Overall, the future of NFTs is incredibly promising.
It’s estimated by MarketsandMarkets that the NFT sector will grow to over $13 billion in 2027, which would constitute an annual growth rate of 35%. This is in line with the overall trend towards spending more time — and money — online; a survey from McKinsey shows that over 20% of the population is going to increase their level of online shopping, exercising, entertaining, etc.
“NFTs were quickly embraced and became a popular way to spend and earn money. The iGaming industry, no stranger to innovation, saw the potential for NFTs immediately, and game providers began developing titles that incorporated the new technology. Aviatrix, for example, features a crash game where players can purchase the in-game avatar as an NFT. Ultimately, if the rapid spread of cryptocurrencies are any indication of how popular and effective blockchain technology can be, we have every reason to believe that NFTs will become commonplace for online casinos and sportsbooks”, says Ayvar Gabidullin, Business Development Manager at Slotegrator.