Ethereum, also known as Ether or ETH for short, is a cryptocurrency that operates on the Ethereum platform. There are a number of comparisons that players can obviously make with bitcoin, the most popular crypto-currency of the times, but there are a number of key differences as well. Those who are only interested in using it as a banking option at Ethereum gambling sites will find that there is a small learning curve that will need to be overcome, but it doesn’t require that you’re some kind of computer genius or anything like that.
What we hope to do here is explain to you everything that you might want to know about this cryptocurrency. While you don’t need to know every single piece of information that we’re going to discuss here to use Ether as a banking method for online gambling, those who are more interested in understanding how the platform works as a whole will like seeing what is discussed here.
Bottom Line: How Do Players Get Started With Ether?
There is a long, complicated way to get started with Ether, and there’s a short, quick way. We recommend the short, quick way because you end up with the exact same amount of Ether in an online wallet that you control with a lot less of a time investment and a lot fewer chances to make costly mistakes. The only downside is that you will not be able to carry around your Ether with you on a USB flash drive with the short method, which is something that virtually no one reading this will care about. The following will describe the quick and easy way to get started: purchasing bitcoin to purchase Ether to deposit into your account. This approach is perhaps surprising easier than purchasing Ether directly at this point for most users.
Suppose you want to make a deposit of about $200 to an online casino, online sportsbook or poker room. First, you’ll need to purchase $200 worth of bitcoin on a simple platform like Coinbase or Circle. This sounds complicated, but bitcoin purchases on those platforms are as simple as using your debit card to make any other purchase online, and it only takes a few moments to complete the transaction. From there, you’ll want to install an Ethereum Wallet program to your computer. Again, this sounds complicated, but it’s a small download that installs just like any other regular program that you would download and install from the Internet. You can do this while you wait on your bitcoin transaction to be completed.
Once that’s downloaded and installed, choose the option to back it up so that once you purchase Ether with your bitcoin, you’ll have a backup of your wallet. After your backup is ready, you can use the ShapeShift.io service or one of a number of other similar services to simply exchange your bitcoin into Ether by following the instructions they give you. Within half an hour, your Ether will be ready in your wallet.
How Do Ether Deposits and Withdrawals Work?
To deposit with Ethereum, you’ll simply need Ether in your wallet. Once you have that, using the instructions above or a different method, you’ll simply follow the directions for a deposit from inside your gambling site of choice’s cashier section. This is a very simple and straightforward process, and their customer service team will be more than happy to walk you through it if you have any questions whatsoever. With that having been said, every site is really good about providing simple instructions that are really difficult to mess up because they don’t want their users having trouble making deposits of any kind.
For a withdrawal, the process is extremely similar, except in reverse. You’ll request an Ether withdrawal from inside of the cashier section of the site, and it will be transferred to your ETH wallet. From there, you’ll be able to convert it back to your currency or into bitcoin, depending on what you want to do with your funds. ShapeShift.io and similar services can convert it back into bitcoin that you can cash out at Coinbase or Circle, or you can hold onto the Ether for depositing at other sites. It’s completely up to you because it’s your funds at that point.
How is Ether Crypto Currency Different Than Bitcoin?
If you’re the type of person who cares a lot about the technical detail behind the different types of cryptocurrencies, then you’ll probably want to know the differences between Ether and the current main cryptocurrency bitcoin. We have an article that explains exactly what cryptocurrencies are, but the short version is that they were designed to do two separate things. While bitcoin was specifically designed to be a decentralized virtual currency, Ether was designed to count the amount of computing work done by computers and other devices. In short, it’s generated by the amount of computing work a machine has done on a particular network based on some complicated algorithms, and it was designed to act as a way for companies to pay for virtual work done by a network of machines.
While Ethereum was not designed to achieve the same goals as bitcoin, it functions pretty much the same in terms of practical usage. You can purchase it online with bitcoin or other currencies, and you can then use it to fund deposits and withdrawals. How they are used as currencies is not a particularly complicated concept, but the technical details behind why they were created and what their original purpose happens to be are completely different. The full extent of Ether’s history, how it can be used in private systems, etc., is outside of the scope of our introduction here, but the full detail are really only useful for computer scientists and those who operate businesses based primarily around computing.
What Makes Ether’s Business-Oriented Design Significant?
Imagine a group of computers, smartphones, tablets and other devices connected together in a network, and all of them are set up so that their idle time (when they aren’t in use) can be used to perform operations that require raw computing power for others over the Internet. In exchange for offering that computing power, you would expect to be paid. Ether was primarily designed to be used to keep up with how much you should be paid for that usage, which could then be used to “purchase” computing power on the same network if you needed it.
Many types of businesses would benefit greatly from this type of networking environment, and that’s exactly what Ether was designed to facilitate. Generally speaking, it’s all about keeping up with the amount of computing power that has been distributed to and from the rest of the network while allowing people to purchase computing power by purchasing the Ether cryptocurrency. If you have no use for spending Ether on a network like this, then you can still buy and sell the currency in an Ether wallet like what we have described above for deposits and withdrawals to online gambling sites, but this is the basic idea behind their business-oriented design and why it’s a critical part of the cryptocurrency itself.