Many of us remember owning a vinyl record, cassette tapes and home videos. While they were once an innovative product of their time, today’s youth may have never even set eyes on them. Like these nostalgic items, it could also be considered that brick-and-mortar casinos have reached their peak.
As technology has developed, the digital world has rapidly dominated everyday activities from shopping in supermarkets to online deliveries, making phone call reservations to booking on the app and all be it, playing at online casinos vs visiting a casino venue.
There’s no denying the world is a different place today than it was just a decade before. But what do these changes mean for casino venues? And why have online casinos been able to so easily dominate?
How has the rise of online casinos affected land-based venues?
When we think of visiting a casino, Las Vegas and Atlantic City are two popular places that spring to mind. Yet since 2009, reports show that footfall to casinos in these locations has declined by 5% year-on-year. In 2008, 27% of players in the US visited casinos at Indian reservations, 24% went to Las Vegas and 12% went to Atlantic City. So where are all these players going?
The digital revolution has had a huge impact on many industries, replacing manual jobs with automation sequences, utilizing the IoT and Big Data to optimize mass design and manufacturing and growing the level of services on offer to consumers. The gambling industry was also hit hard by the digital revolution with the number of land-based casinos in the UK and across the world beginning to decline.
Soon, online casino providers would be popping up left, right and center, in which the competition between casinos providers became rife. With better access to technology and increasing disposable incomes, many people began to be able to access online casinos, preferring them over visiting the physical venue.
What is the appeal of online casinos?
Online casino providers offer a wide variety of benefits that have helped make them so popular among modern-day gamers. Let’s take a look at some of the technologies benefitting online casinos below.
Mobile gaming convenience
As mobile devices and tablets have evolved and become much more affordable across the world, casino game developers have focused on developing intuitive gaming platforms through online services and apps that enable players to access their favorite casino games anytime and anywhere.
Whether gamers are on the commute to work, on a beach in the Caribbean or simply at home, they can easily participate in their favorite games while on the go.
While brick-and-mortar casinos are limited by things like physical space in the casino, online casinos can offer a huge variety of games. From many different types of poker to blackjack, roulette and online slots.
What’s more, as games have become more innovative, online slots now offer a whole new experience where they are designed to be more like video games. This content and visually rich experience usually takes form with a theme from a popular TV show or movie, offering much more than just a slot game.
While online casinos have been incredibly popular, many players miss the nostalgia of visiting a real-life casino. Virtual Reality bridges the gap between the physical and digital worlds by offering a 3D-world for players to immerse themselves in – free from the distractions of their environment around them.
Similarly, Augmented Reality (AR) technology offers a similar experience where players can bring the game to their homes. With AR, the player’s environment around them is incorporated into the game, making for a much richer experience.
According to reports, 58 countries have 5G technology as of June 2021. This is up from around just 38 countries one year ago, indicating how fast it is being rolled out across the world. 5G technology makes some critical differences in gaming and is facilitating live streaming and live playing of online games.
While 4G struggled to support such activities, the speed and bandwidth of 5G mean that players can stream, download and upload content so much faster than ever before. According to Ericsson, the Swedish networking and telecoms company, 5G significantly reduces lags and enables speeds that are suitable for professional gamers. As 5G reaches the far corners of the globe, many players across the world are now gaining access to this professional experience.
A recent addition to the online casino scene has been live dealers. A live dealer is a real-life person who acts as a dealer in a virtual game. As the game is live, players benefit from being able to interact with the dealer and other players, enrapturing some of the atmospheres of a real-life casino game.
The future of land-based casinos
While online casinos are proving to be taking over, it seems that brick-and-mortar casinos will never actually become extinct. The rich environment and culture on offer in grand casinos across the world simply can’t be replaced by an online game, no matter how much technology is incorporated.
While it’s clear the online casino scene will continue to grow, there’s no doubt about it, real-life casinos are a rich part of the world’s culture and will remain for a while yet.