Popular Bitcoin Sportsbook Directbet has shut down its operations. Check out our picks of the best bitcoin sportsbooks for alternatives.
If you were to pick your bitcoin sportsbetting platform based on the wisdom of the crowd, Directbet would be your choice. They have been voted the overwhelming favorite sportsbook at bitcointalk, though some allowance must be given for the fact that they utilize the forums for running their promotions – which has proven an excellent marketing strategy.
However, the vote is not without its merit. DirectBet sets the bar in providing an extremely simple betting experience, with no account opening required or even possible. Bitcoin is sent per bet as part of the betslip process, and winning bets are instantly sent back to the address from which the bet was initially sent. While the site design and navigation is still a bit rough around the edges, the betting flow feels like it is 5 years ahead of the rest of the market, which will eventually arrive at this point as well. Combine this betting process with excellent support, live betting and very good event coverage – including horse racing – and Direct Bet is definitely one of the top three sportsbooks servicing US customers and accepting bitcoin.
Opening an Account
Users do not open account at direct bet, nor do they really make deposits. Rather, bets are made individually per game (or parlay) by selecting the relevant bet, inputting the address to which you’d like to receive your earnings, and then sending bitcoin to the displayed address. Winning bets are sent immediately after the end of an event to the address selected.
Direct Bet offers a loyalty program and tipster competition to reward its players. Additionally, they often give out free bets on their bitcointalk forum, so it does not hurt to pop in every now and again.
The loyalty program offers monthly cashback based on the number of loyalty points earned. By default, bets placed from the same cashout bitcoin address will count towards the program; in the event players would like to cashout to multiple addresses, entering your email when placing a bet will aggregate all loyalty points under the same email address.
One loyalty point is earned for every .001 bitcoin, 0.1 litecoin, 0.1 dash, or 2,000 DOGE, with rewards earned at the following levels (shown only in btc, but the effective rebate is the same across all the coins)
|Loyalty Points||Wagering Required||Bitcoin Reward||Cumulative Reward||Effective Rebate|
|5,000||5 BTC||20 mBTC||20 mBTC||0.4%|
|10,000||10 BTC||30 mBTC||50 mBTC||0.5%|
|20,000||520BTC||50 mBTC||100 mBTC||0.5%|
|50,000||5 0BTC||200 mBTC||300 mBTC||0.6%|
|100,000||100BTC||500 mBTC||800 mBTC||0.8%|
|200,000||200 BTC||800 mBTC||1.6 BTC||0.8%|
|300,000||300 BTC||900 mBTC||2.5 BTC||0.83%|
|500,000||500 BTC||2.0 BTC||4.5 BTC||0.9%|
|750,000||750 BTC||2.05BTC||7.0 BTC||0.93%|
|1,000,000||1,000 BTC||3.0 BTC||10.0 BTC||1.0%|
Players are paid the rebate directly into their cash out addresses as the different levels are achieved. Each month the points are reset.
The Direct Bet Tipster Championship generally runs for two months, and offers prizes to the betters with the best return on investment on their bets over the course of the tournament. Direct Bet keeps track of bets in a dedicated bitcointalk forum, where users must leave the link of their bet to confirm. A leaderboard is updated daily on the Direct Bet site, and users are rewarded according to the following schedule:
|Place Finish||Bankroll over 1 BTC||Bankroll less than 1 BTC|
|1||3.5 BTC||0.5 BTC|
|3||1.4 BTC||0.2 BTC|
|4||0.7 BTC||0.1 BTC|
|5||0.7 BTC||0.1 BTC|
|6||0.35 BTC||0.05 BTC|
|7||0.35 BTC||0.05 BTC|
Participants must place at least 70 bets during the tournament to qualify. All qualifying participants are rewarded with 100,000 or 30,000 DOGE for playing, based on their bankroll size.
The Direct Bet Sportsbook Product
What Direct Bet lacks in beauty it makes up for in having a truly kickass bitcoin sportsbetting product. We’ve documented above the ease with which bets can be made, and the speed in which bets are paid out. It is basically the equivalent of an online off track betting shop – buy your ticket before the race, cash your ticket after the race. Event coverage is pretty excellent for both world and US sports. The bet types are alright, nothing extravagant, and the odds, while not the best, are acceptable compared to other bookmakers. Direct Bet has an excellent live betting program, which is available for bets in real time, and offers extensive horse racing as well, with all major and many minor international race tracks covered.
Direct Bet advertises a “negotiate your odds” feature, which it boasts as having the advantages of a betting exchange without all the complexity. Basically, this allows you to name the odds you would like, and your bet will not be confirmed until the actual odds are better than or equal to your preferred odds. Perhaps it might be likened a bit to a limit order – if your limit is not hit, you won’t get into the action. Flexible odds, which are the standard selection, automatically place the bet at the odds when your bitcoin transfer is received – usually within a few minutes. There is an additional selection offered, “firm odds”, which will not place the bet when your bitcoin transfer is received if the odds have since changed for the worse – this is not a recommended option, as it often leads to bets being returned.
The site looks pretty poor on mobile, but the fact that no accounts are required to bet actually greatly simplifies the entire process. You can easily pinch and squeeze your way to a bet, and all the must be done is to paste your bitcoin address, and send some coin to Direct Bet – easily done on mobile. So while the product is not responsively designed, it actually performs better than other sites that might be a tad more mobile-friendly.
Direct Bet has a reputation for possessing an extremely high quality support staff, who are both prompt and knowledgeable in their interactions with clients. One can get a taste of this by perusing the bitcointalk chat forum, where they often interact with customers.
The ease with which bets are placed at Direct Bet is arguably the best on the internet. Registration, depositing and needing to withdraw are all things of the past. When you win a bet, your payout is automatically and instantly sent, which is an exceptional selling point. Add to this nice promotions, excellent service and some fun promos, and it is easy to see why DirectBet has become one of, if not THE, most popular bitcoin sportsbetting products. Give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.