If you’ve ever used Boku, you’ve probably heard of “charge to bill,” or “direct operator billing.” With this, you may deposit money into Boku casinos and have the expenses sent to your mobile phone bill instead, bypassing the lengthy and risky process of inputting your precious bank card information. Learn more about how this popular payment mechanism works for both mobile and online casinos on this page.
Vidicom Ltd was created in the United Kingdom in 2003 and renamed Boku in 2012. Many investors contributed to the company's growth throughout the years, despite its humble beginnings. After receiving money from two high-profile venture capital companies (Khosla Ventures and Index Ventures), the company's fortunes took a turn for the better. Once Boku and its brand were adopted, the company expanded its services in the United States and acquired Mobilcash and Paymo in the process.
As a result of Boku's investment-based business strategy, the firm received more than $25 million USD less than a year after its US debut. Another $35 million was added in 2012, and $13.75 million was added in 2016. Investors from around the world have put more than $90 million into this cutting-edge enterprise. In addition to Benchmark Capital and Index Ventures, New Enterprise Associates, Telefónica, and GMO Payment Gateway are some of the other investors in this sector.
Boku went public on the London Stock Exchange (AIM) in 2017 with an initial value of £125 million, buoyed by huge fundraising from a wave of high-profile stakeholders. As a result of the company's location in San Francisco, AIM was chosen over the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). Smaller, fast-growing companies like Boku may have a tough time attracting the attention of large financial institutions due to the sheer size of the US stock markets.
The company’s primary focus was and remains on virtual goods and specifically social gaming platforms like Zynga, Playdom and Playfish. But their sights were set higher. From the company’s perspective, there was a huge untapped market here with over 5 billion users of mobile devices.
So it’s of little surprise that Boku’s USP is now connected to more than 170 carriers around the world in some 50 markets. The company has forged partnerships with the likes of Apple, Google Play Store, Sony Playstation and Spotify. Its services are also used by digital companies such as IGG, Bigpoint, Electronic Arts and Tencent. One of its biggest deals was announced in 2013, with the purchase of Qubecell – one of India’s largest mobile phone carriers.
Today, the vast majority of Boku’s transactions relate to music streaming, digital subscriptions, app stores, free-to-play games and more recently mobile online casinos.
Unlike other methods of online casino deposit, using Boku is extremely easy and convenient. Here’s a quick drill-down of how it can be used with most iGaming websites.
First of all, you’ll need to find out if your mobile phone network accepts Boku. If it’s with O2, EE, Vodafone, or Three, then you are eligible to use the service. As long as the UK casino accepts Boku as a payment option, then you’re good to go.
For most casinos, the minimum deposit is £10. For subsequent deposits, you won’t even need that. Once registered, select Boku as your preferred provider. You’ll be able to find the company icon in the operator’s payment suite.
After choosing Boku, you will be directed to the services deposit screen where you can select and confirm your chosen amount. You should then receive a text message requiring you to verify payment. After verification, another SMS text will be sent informing you that your payment was successful. Your money should then automatically be credited to your account and you’ll be able to navigate back to the online casino and use your newly deposited funds. It really is as simple as that.
For the casino high rollers among you, the daily maximum deposit limit of £30 will almost certainly be untenable. So it’s probably best to look elsewhere if you’re planning on spending a small fortune (not something we recommend by the way).
The inclusion of such as limit does make sense though. The option to add endless charges to your phone bill (money that you may not technically actually have) could prove financially ruinous, especially considering how easy it is to use Boku.
A few operators refuse to honour their welcome bonuses to players who use Boku. While these are few and far between, this is something to keep in mind when hunting for the best online casino bonuses.
It should also be mentioned that not all online casinos offer BOKU as a payment option. With that said, there are plenty that does. The most notable operators include Kerching, Red Spins, Chelsea Palace and Mansion Casino.
Unfortunately, you cannot withdraw money through Boku. Again, it makes sense, as it is difficult to imagine the mechanism through which you could receive your winnings (other than crediting your mobile phone bill). For many customers, the idea of having to keep track of different payment systems for deposits and withdrawals may just be a financial hassle too far. This, however, should not be viewed as a deal-breaker.
There is plenty to commend Boku and although as mentioned many casinos do not currently offer it as a payment method, more should be catching on in the near future. For some, the ease and simplicity, as well as the in-built financial control, will make Boku an attractive option. It is also secure, as each charge is authenticated by the mobile providers. More and more people are searching explicitly for Boku online casinos. And frankly, we think this is for good reason.
The likes of VISA UK casinos and MasterCard UK casinos are still amongst the most popular. However, the emergence of PayPal casino in the UK is hot on their heels! You can also find more casino banking options below.