The main advantages of playing online vs offline
Technology has transformed numerous sectors during the 21st century, and that is certainly the case where the casino industry is concerned.
It is not too long ago that visiting a casino was viewed as an upper-class pursuit, but the landscape has changed dramatically over the past couple of decades.
The creation of the world wide web sparked an online gambling boom, allowing operators to massively expand the scope of their operations.
Online casino sites have become all the rage in recent years, opening the door for millions of new players to enjoy iconic games like blackjack, roulette and many more.
As tech is an ever-evolving medium, it is no surprise to find that modern online casinos are hugely different from the earliest incarnations.
One of the biggest developments in recent times has been the launch of live casino games, which closely replicate the experience of visiting a land-based venue.
Read on as we take a closer look at live online casinos and assess some of the advantages they have over brick-and-mortar establishments.
What is a live online casino?
Live online casinos use the latest video streaming technology to provide players with a gameplay experience that mirrors what they can enjoy in a land-based venue.
Many top casino operators offer live dealer variants of blackjack, poker, roulette and baccarat, most of which are available on a 24/7/365 basis.
While online casinos use random number generators to power the different games, live casinos are effectively an online version of real-life casinos.
Croupiers and dealers manage the tables, providing players with the opportunity to see the action unfold in a live environment.
How does a live casino work?
In terms of the technology, the cameras that screen the action are the most important element of live online casinos.
Optical camera recognition technology is utilised to stream the games via a video link, and there are generally three cameras covering each table.
Every table also has a Game Control Unit (GCU) attached to it, which encodes the video that is broadcast to the players.
Built-in sensors are used to interact with the casino software to allow the player to view the results of each spin or deal.
Monitors show what the each of the players see on their screens and allow the dealer or croupier to see who is currently playing.
Instant messaging software is used to establish a line of communication between the casino staff and players.
A live casino studio will typically employ at least one cameraman who is responsible for ensuring that all of the cameras function properly.
The number of croupiers and dealers in attendance is governed by the number of different tables in the live online casino.
To ensure fairness, most live casinos have a television playing in the background so that players can see that the video feeds are running in real time.
Benefits of live casino games
Online casinos have several advantages over land-based venues, which is why they have grown massively in popularity over the past few years.
Convenience is undoubtedly one of the biggest factors, with players able to play their favourite games at a time and place that suits their individual requirements.
By contrast, a trip to a land-based venue involves plenty of planning and expenditure, particularly if you are heading to places such as Las Vegas or Monte Carlo.
People can play live casino games in the comfort of their own home, or take advantage of advancements in smartphone tech to access the games while on the move.
All you need is a device capable of handling the video stream and a stable internet connection to ensure you don’t miss out on key moments in the game.
Online casino sites also offer a greater variety of games, with the internet not restricted by the floor space limitations of their land-based counterparts.
However, many people still crave the human interaction they can enjoy in a real-life venue and that is where live online casinos come in.
They offer the opportunity to interact with the dealers and croupiers, thus mirroring the gameplay experience provided by brick-and-mortar establishments.
For many players table games at casinos lose their attraction when they are powered by random number generators.
That factor is not in play at live online casinos, thus bringing the skill element back into play for games such as blackjack and poker.
What is the future of live online casinos?
The online gambling industry has undergone significant changes over the past few years and that trend will continue for the foreseeable future.
The shift towards live online games is expected to accelerate as more operators expand their offering in this area.
Developers such as Evolution Gaming are working hard to push through further innovations and Virtual Reality (VR) technology could be the next big leap forward.
The firm recently announced the launch of Gonzo’s Treasure Hunt, an exciting online live game show and casino game.
It blends live and slots-style gameplay with the option to play in VR mode using a compatible headset and controller.
Experts have forecast that there will be more of this type gameplay experience in the future, opening up a wealth of possibilities for players and casino operators alike.
VR could allow friends or family to play against each other at the tables, or be used to take online poker tournaments to a whole new level.
While these developments are unquestionably exciting for the online sector, they are also likely to be positive news for land-based venues.
The ‘live’ element is a still a major attraction where casinos are concerned and the boom in online play has already provided kickback to land-based venues.
As more people experience live online casinos, a growing number are being tempted into trying their luck in a real-life casino. All-in-all, it’s a win-win situation for the industry as a whole.