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Technology is constantly evolving, making things easier and safer for consumers every year. Over the last decade, everyone has seen big changes in everyday life – smart devices have taken over households and cryptocurrencies have made people multimillionaires.
These are just a few examples of technological developments. These changes are visible in all industries, including gaming. The gambling industry is one of the largest in the world, so there is a huge amount of money being spent on new technologies.
Let’s take a look at five (5) things that have changed in the gaming industry as technology has evolved.
1. Online casinos have replaced brick-and-mortar casinos
Casino games are certainly not a new invention. The first references to gambling date back to before the year 1000. Research and written evidence show that the first playing cards were already in use in China at that time. Gambling games based on “modern” point spreads are estimated to date back to the 15th century.
Casinos have existed in the world for hundreds of years. If we look at Finland for instance, the first stone-foot casino was not established until 1991. Casino Ray opened in Kamppi, Helsinki, next to the Hotel President. However, on a global scale, it was already close to the newer technology of online gambling.
The first online casinos providing games (rahapelejä in Finnish) were established in the 1990s. In Europe, they started to proliferate in a big way in the early 2000s. At that time, online casinos were a licensed activity, meaning that they were officially legal in many European countries. At that time, however, the main focus was still on online poker, through various poker networks.
As technology evolved, the real “online casino boom” began around 2010. Game offerings began to be varied, including slots, lottery, betting and some live games. About five years after that, casinos without registration came to the attention of all players.
In fact, it can be said that modern online gambling started in 2015. That’s when Finns started to understand the benefits of foreign casinos. Since then, the domestic Veikkaus slice has been shrinking year by year – around 30% of all gambling now takes place in online casinos.
2. Mobile payments
The explosion of smart devices is reflected in the way people pay. When we look at the daily activities of gamblers, mobile payments cannot be overlooked. Millions of consumers have at least one of the following mobile payment methods:
- Bank Transfer
- Google and Apple Pay
The good thing about these payment methods is that anyone can shop online using just their smartphone. The payment methods are linked to the user’s phone number, so there is no need for online banking credentials.
Depending on the payment method, a bank account or debit/credit card is often linked to the payment. But no actual online bank transfer takes place. PayPal, for example, also has a feature that ensures 100% certainty of payment – if the buyer does not receive the promised product, the lost amount is refunded in full.
3. Mobile gambling in the spotlight – also in the gambling sector
Today, the majority of players use a smartphone or tablet. This means that a casino should have a responsive website. In practice, it means that the site automatically scales correctly for all smart devices – the player doesn’t have to do anything.
Another option is a mobile app. In 2021, a gambling app can be downloaded from the App Store if the player has an iOS device. For Android, the app cannot be downloaded from Google Play, due to their terms and conditions. For these devices, the app will always be downloaded directly from the casino website.
4. Cryptocurrencies are growing in popularity
One of the biggest developments in technology concerns new currencies. Everyone will have heard of cryptocurrencies, which are 100% virtual currency. This is no longer a new invention as such, as the first Bitcoin, for example, was launched in 2008.
However, in 2021 there will be several thousand different virtual currencies. Many experts predict that cryptocurrencies will replace “paper money” in the future. However, this is a long way off, as the Bank of Finland, for example, does not consider cryptos to be an official currency.
The most popular cryptocurrencies at the moment:
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- BTC (Bitcoin) (BTC) Ethereum (ETH)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- Ripple (XPR)
- Dogegoin (DOGE)
Needless to say, the huge popularity of cryptocurrencies is evident in every industry in the world – including gaming. The more people who use virtual currencies for their daily payments, the more companies are taking advantage of this phenomenon.
At the moment, cryptocurrencies are not available in many European casinos, but outside the EU they are starting to become available to everyone.
One of the biggest benefits of technology is the ease of doing things, and the increase in security. Whatever the industry, technological advances have greatly increased security.
Take a traditional bank, for example. You can’t really rob banks nowadays because everything is digital – including money. In the old days, criminals used to go in with guns to empty banks, but that’s no longer possible. The same goes for all other criminal activities, because traditional paper money is disappearing.
Security aspects have also evolved in the gaming sector. Today, casinos are required by law to comply with anti-money laundering (AML), and one way of doing this is through customer due diligence (KYC). Ten years ago, casinos did not ask much about identity, but nowadays they do it with 100% certainty.
When gambling is done online, security has increased simply because of the security of the website. Today, every website has SSL encryption, identified by the HTTPS prefix in front of the domain. This means that all activity on that site is protected from third parties.