- Israeli software developer launches world’s first Ethereum poker app
- Cryptocurrency Ethereum can be used to provide provably fair online betting
Ethereum, aka the world’s ‘other’ cryptocurrency is continuing to go from strength to strength as developers find new and innovative uses for its blockchain technology. Its market cap might not be as high as Bitcoin’s, but Ethereum is proving its worth in a number of real-world applications.
This week, Live Player Games (LPG), an Israeli software developer, has demonstrated the latest practical use for Ethereum. In Uncle Finney’s Poker, the Tel Aviv developer can claim to have launched the world’s first Ethereum poker app for Android.
That’s a pretty niche category admittedly, but it’s one that could grow as more games developers unlock the potential that’s built into the Ethereum blockchain. Players can use the app to bet with Ethereum, utilising the E4ROW smart-contract which has a multitude of possible uses.
Provably fair betting
Ethereum has attracted a lot of press in recent months, not just on account of its growing value, but also down to its suitability for providing provably fair betting, among other things.
Using the Ethereum blockchain, players can see incontrovertible evidence that the game has not been manipulated by the operator in any way. The trick, from a development perspective, has been trying to facilitate these checks in real-time. In poker, for example, provably fair betting needs to be demonstrated almost instantaneously. Ethereum blockchain confirmations are markedly faster than Bitcoin, but still nowhere near the speed required to facilitate something like poker.
Live Player Games is one of the first developers to successfully surmount this obstacle. Explaining the science behind the Uncle Finney’s Poker app, LPG’s David B. Rosen noted: “We chose a hybrid solution, wherein our back-end server adeptly manages the flow of the card game but all the actual bets are deposited directly to — and paid out by — the E4ROW smart-contract in real-time. Our servers and our company never touch the players’ funds. This marks a major departure from the multitude of online casinos which typically require players to take a leap of faith by setting up accounts with foreign companies and depositing funds in advance of playing.”
In other words, the Ethereum smart-contract takes care of the escrow side of things, retaining the bets before paying them out to the winner.
“Since the E4ROW smart-contract handles all the bets and resides wholly on the blockchain, the back-end server does not attract hacking. Also, the fact that the funds do not need to be deposited into some off-shore casino ahead of time makes it much simpler to start playing, and hopefully far more trustworthy in the eyes of the millions of poker players.”
David B. Rosen, Live Player Games
For Ethereum devotees – and indeed anyone who’s interested in provably fair gaming – there is an E4ROW Contribution Campaign launching on May 2. Running for three weeks, the campaign will see supporters purchase tokens, with token-holders benefiting from the 2% escrow fee subsequently paid out on all E4ROW contract collects. Even if the workings of blockchain-based smart-contract applications fly over your head, a provably fair poker app is a concept that all gamblers can get behind.
Don’t understand Ethereum? Don’t worry, you don’t have to. Cryptocurrencies – and that includes Bitcoin too – aren’t the easiest thing to get you head around due to their high-tech design and application. All you need to know is that Ethereum has been proven to make online wagering pretty much impenetrably fair and secure which, let’s be honest, is all that matters to you as an online casino fan. Bearing that in mind, the launch of this particular app could be huge moment for the industry as it offers unquestionably secure betting. Will it take off? We don’t know – at present Ethereum, more so that Bitcoin, exists somewhat on the periphery of tech. But, if Uncle Finney’s Poker app gets off the ground we could be seeing the first of many online casinos powered by Ethereum, and a safe world for online players. Watch this space.
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