When Microgaming introduced the first online casino in 1994 with just 18 games, the internet was in its infancy, smartphones didn’t exist, and the online world wasn’t as rich and evolved as we know it today.
However, the online casino industry has developed hugely, with a worth predicted to hit $156.3 billion in 2030 – and much of that can be attributed to the ever-changing landscape of technology.
Playing online now doesn’t mean waiting for a dial-up modem to connect, or even being stuck at home in front of a PC. Players can get access to their favourite online casino games from their smartphone while they wait for a bus, or on their lunch break at work.
So, what is the future of online casinos and what can players expect when they get involved?
A Brief History of Online Casinos
Although some people might disagree, it is widely accepted that Microgaming was the first company to create an online casino. This small tech business based in the Isle of Man put together 18 of the most popular casino games and allowed access to players around the world.
Since then, the creation of online casinos has allowed different companies to highlight both their creativity and their software know-how. While the games would be considered very crude in comparison to what we are used to today (think how basic Snake was for the Nokia 3310, for example), many software companies began creating casino games for the burgeoning internet.
When high street bookmakers and land-based casino operators began to see that players wanted online access to the games and sports that they usually bet on they wanted to get involved. Now, you can play at an online casino operated by your favourite bookmaker, or even a Las Vegas casino. However, some of the best slot games can be found at sites like Rainbow Riches Casino, developed specifically for the online gameplay that you know and love.
1998 was the first iteration of online poker games, and then 1999 was when multiplayer games were introduced to the online casino, making them a social place, as well as somewhere players could win some real money.
Mobile gaming is widely recognised as the real fulcrum point for the development of online casinos. With smartphone technology developing, it has become possible for online casino operators to create applications that are designed to work with Android and Apple devices, making use of unique features, layouts, and designs to ensure that the player has a smooth and straightforward experience when they are playing.
Using a smartphone and connecting to the widely available 4G network (and even 5G in most places now), players can chat to their online friends, win a game of bingo, or play their favourite slot machine wherever they are. This at-your-fingertips availability is something that continues to develop, with many operators looking for ways to integrate gameplay on smartphone peripherals like watches.
The Playing Experience
Rainbow Riches and other online casinos provide access to a vast number of games and getting involved couldn’t be easier. New players will often get bonuses to help get started, and once you have set up an account it is simple to find your favourite game and play.
Innovation is in every click in an online casino. From the animation to the encryption that keeps your personal data and financial information safe, technology is key to your playing experience.
Many of the online games that you will play at a casino make use of Random Number Generator (RNG) technology. This is an algorithm that ensures results are completely random; you’ll find them used in slots, but also in first-person shooter type games for your console where enemies can spawn anywhere.
Online casinos assess their RNG to ensure true randomness.
This is one of the biggest visual changes to the online casino experience. Smooth, fast animations using 3D graphics and realistic graphics make all sorts of games more interesting to look at and exciting to play.
Even simple animations like turning a card in poker is improved using thoughtful design and graphics, and when it comes to cascading reels and other chain reactions in slot games, the quality of the animation is one reason they are so exciting.
Playing card games against computer players used to be quite a draining experience, either they were too ‘good’ at the game and as such you rarely won, or they were just terrible and therefore not worth the competition.
The development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology has made a positive impact on these computer-controlled players – in most cases, you would find it hard to decide if your competition was human or robot.
Combining video and audio technology, Augmented Reality can take a player into a live casino to get more of the experience of actually being there. Live dealers turn cards for games like poker or blackjack, and real players gather round to get in on the action.
Augmented Reality makes playing casino games much more immersive and exciting, whether the dealer is in a casino on the Las Vegas strip or in a studio.
The Future is Bright
As mobile technology continues to grow, online casinos like Rainbow Riches remain at the forefront of innovation to give their players access to not only the best games, but also the newest ways to play them.
Online casinos have rejuvenated the casino industry, and while the Virtual Reality experience of visiting a casino might not be an accessible reality right now, it is a safe bet that in the future you’ll be able to be on the casino floor in your own home.