In recent years, online gambling has undergone some significant changes. With its popularity burgeoning, it is expected to be worth over $74 billion by 2023, with a customer base that spans across the globe.
A huge and growing industry, it has a reputation for remaining at the cutting edge of technological advances. Reliant on the internet for its very existence, it is no stranger to tech, nor does it shy away from embracing it in all of its incarnations.
The result is that the industry has seen a significant evolution in a relatively short space of time, with its technological innovations showing no signs of slowing nor abating in the near future. In fact, 2020 has been the year where it has transformed to a greater degree than ever before, due in no small part to a handful of recent advances.
We take a look at four of the most exciting – and potentially momentous, innovations to emerge over the course of the last 12 months.
In the last two to three years, cloud technology has been the buzzword on everyone’s lips. Embraced by industries large and small, it’s little wonder that it found its way into the world of online gambling.
Helping to draw not only attention but an ever-increasing audience, cloud gaming has given players access to a greater range of mobile games than ever before. Circumventing the need to download a casino app, it means that games can be enjoyed over the internet but still on one’s smartphone.
The reason this has proven revolutionary is that it means that games no longer need to be stored on the internet, and are therefore prevented from taking up space on mobile devices. Essentially enabling game streaming, many view it as a far more streamlined and preferable alternative to its predecessor.
Even better, in the eyes of many, gaming speeds tend to be increased when cloud gaming is enabled, making for smoother gameplay and a more immersive online casino experience.
Another buzzword for the future is ‘cryptocurrency’, and this is an area where the online casino sector is unwilling to be left behind. Indeed, one only has to look at a directory site like Casinomarket.com to see this in evidence, with providers such as 22Bet already using it as a unique selling point.
Adopted by many as a new and novel payment option, cryptocurrency has many potential benefits to offer players, from increased transactional security to enhanced transparency and almost-instantaneous payment speeds.
Indeed, those with a mind to their online safety can breathe a sigh of relief when using it to make deposits and withdrawals, knowing that it essentially eliminates any and all possibility of fraud or cyber theft.
Many of the casinos who are embracing this tech are already accepting a host of major currencies, from ethereum and bitcoin, through to altcoin options.
Virtual reality has also been making headlines in the last 12 months. Touted as being potentially revolutionary, it has not yet been embraced by all casinos – primarily due to its associated costs – but those who have had the chance to enjoy it claim that it creates a far more immersive and exciting gaming experience.
Although it is not accessible to all players, even where it is available, due to the specialist hardware it requires, virtual reality undoubtedly adds an extra level of interactivity, and the products needed to take advantage are quickly becoming more affordable.
This means that while it’s unlikely to achieve its full potential by the end of this year, it is one to look out for in the very near future, with a host of specialist VR slots and card games already in development and increasingly beginning to make their way onto the market.
AI, too, is proving a major selling point, and one that has very much been put to use by the sector. Already utilized by Google and other search engines, its primary purpose and function is to apprehend a user’s needs and provide a more personalized and targeted online experience.
In this capacity, we’ve all seen it at work already, tailoring our recommendations on a host of online platforms, from Amazon and Facebook through to Netflix. In the case of gaming sites, however, it’s not only used for marketing purposes but to provide support and assistance to customers.
This is usually achieved through the implementation of an AI chatbot, which authentically simulates human conversation. Able to offer advice and assistance around the clock, these are a more cost-effective alternative to call centers – and are not constrained by ordinary business hours.
When it comes to the mobile gaming industry, it’s fair to say that its evolution is continual, constant, and committed to providing an ever more enjoyable user experience. With these four major innovations already at work and changing the face of it, we can only imagine what the sector will look like another five years from now.