At the time when Las Vegas started booming with some of the biggest casinos in the world, not many would have predicted that in the future gamblers would be able to get the same experience in their homes. The first online casino was created in 1994, and today they have evolved into a slick and smooth operation with immersive graphics and even real-life croupiers.
Easier Than Ever
The lure of the online casino is clear. It allows anyone from around the world to be able to play on the same machines at often a faster pace of play than traditional casinos. They are extremely convenient as you don’t even have to leave your house in order to play them and you can instantly switch between games without ever having to wait your turn.
Players can choose from a seemingly endless amount of games that are now all run with a plethora of sounds, detailed graphics, and animations that really draw you into the game. These graphics and sounds are equally impressive on mobile, desktop browsers and downloadable software.
It Took a While for Online Casinos to Gain Trust
Players at the start were naturally skeptical. In a traditional casino, you entered into the building and you could physically see the cards being shuffled and the chips being placed down. There is a certainty when you can see what is happening before your eyes. For many players, they find it hard to trust the algorithms that power slot machines and online casinos.
These games though are governed by Random Number Generators (RNGs) which are regulated and have to provide the player with a certain probability of their number coming up. These odds have to be at least the natural odds of the physical machines that they replicate, or for slot machines, they have to meet the minimum standard. These algorithms have to apply to the law and are checked regularly, to ensure standards are being met. There arefprminimum payout percentages, and online casino will have to guarantee this before they would be granted a license.
It used to be the case that someone had to download software onto their desktop computer before they could play an online casino. While this option is still widely available for those that want it, the technology of the online casino has moved on a lot since then. The biggest advancement came with the ability to log-in on a desktop browser, meaning that you could gamble from anywhere where you had a computer, which increased further when these websites became available on mobile phones. Now we have seen the final stage where multiple gaming apps offer you the ability to have the world of gambling in your pocket. Getting to a casino has never been easier.
The Rise of the Developer
The method of operating has changed as well. It used to be the case that casinos and bookmakers had their own machines and their own way of operating. These days there are numerous companies whose sole operation is to make games that they then license to online casinos from them to use. Among the industry giants are Microgaming, NetEnt, and Playtech.
Often online casinos are just a collection of numerous different games from numerous different developers. This can often lead to enticing games which are named and styled after your favorite music or TV show. For instance, some NetEnt casinos offer video games that have been developed in association with 20th Century Fox.
The emergence of online poker also took the world by storm. In everyday life, people might not know where to find somewhere to play poker, but casinos make all of this so easily accessible. Not only the ability to play, but an online casino will be able to offer a wide range of variants of not just poker, but other popular games like roulette and blackjack.
Another significant advancement in the world of the online casino was the ability to have a live dealer before your eyes, which offers a more authentic experience. A highly trained croupier will be there shuffling and dealing the cards, the only difference being that you could be playing anywhere in the world. This live, high-quality stream offers a real experience and a greater level of interaction. This software plays out to a number of people and allows the player to tip the croupier just like they could in real life.
The Online Safety Issue
Online safety is clearly a huge concern with online casinos, but users are able to deposit money into their account via a number of different methods. Withdrawals also can be done easily but take longer than deposits due to their verification process. Generally, a players money that is in their own account will be held in a separate account by the casino, so that the money is protected should anything happen to the company.
All funds and information are all held securely, with all the top companies using the latest SSL encryption to keep this information safe. The technology has moved on quickly and all casinos know that if there was ever any security breach of their data or funds, that it would turn away customers from using their service. The SSL works as it does with all secure websites whereby two ‘keys’ are held with one which publicly establishes the encryption and the other privately decrypts it.
The authorities generally expect their licensees to be open and honest and allow for a fair amount of testing of their software. This is to ensure measure like the ‘return to player’ percentage is high enough and that the algorithms haven’t been meddled with. The audits are generally done via independent third parties who will ensure that the online casino is working as it should be.
Another feature of online casinos, compared to the traditional way, is that a company will have a lot more data on the way that you play, how often you play and how long you’ve been with them. Storing this data means that they can target the player with loyalty schemes and bonuses. It allows the casino to get a repeat customer and the player gets the odd perk.
Online casinos are thriving due to a clever use of software and marketing tactics which give people an ease of use that they have never had before, while still trying to make the experience realistic and personal. They are well-oiled machines which have seamlessly made the transition from the real brick walls to the phone in your pocket.