What Type of Hardware Do I Need to Play Online Casino Games?

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Picture of chips falling on a laptop
BetMGM Sep 26, 2023, 12:26 AM

Americans love their casino games. According to statistics, at least 85% of Americans have gambled at least once, and more than 60% have gambled in the last year. The great news is that enjoying casino games no longer means having to make your way to your nearest brick-and-mortar casino. Thanks to technological advancements, it’s now possible to play casino games online on practically any device.

Of course, regardless of whether you’re already a fan of online casino games or you’re just starting out, it’s important to have the right equipment if you want to have a good gaming experience. Here is some advice about the different types of hardware you’ll need to enjoy playing online.

What Equipment Do You Need To Play Casino Games Online?

The first aspect you should look at is the way in which your device connects to the internet. No matter how powerful your device is, if your internet connection is poor, your gaming experience is likely to be poor as well. (Or worse, you may not be able to play at all.) Once you’ve established that you have the right internet hardware, such as a good router to connect your device(s) to the internet, you have to look at the hardware you need to play casino games on, whether that’s a computer, mobile device, or both.

Internet-Accessing Hardware

Before you can start playing online casino games on your PC, it’s important to have a stable internet connection that supports online gaming. Without a strong enough internet connection, you’ll likely experience lag while you play, which could even result in you missing a round of your game and wasting one of your bets. So, before you start your game, it’s also worth checking your internet speed (there are many websites that can do this for you) to ensure that it will be fast enough to satisfy your needs. 

Depending on your circumstances, you may have more or less control over how stable or reliable your connection is. For example, if you are renting an apartment with an internet service included, it may not be possible to change your internet service provider (ISP.) Alternatively, you may be living in an area that is only serviced by one ISP or one which has providers that offer poor service. Finally, you may be reliant on a good mobile provider with poor coverage in your specific area. In these and some other cases where service provision is the problem, there may not be a hardware solution to improve your internet access. 

If you do have a greater degree of control over how you access the internet from home, the most important device is your router. Although there is a wide range of choices when it comes to routers, for most people, the top priorities are the router’s ability to provide a stable Wi-Fi network across your entire property and whether it can seamlessly connect to the ISP you’ve chosen to use. 

More advanced users who have some experience in setting up their own computing devices may want to look for routers that offer traffic management or quality of service (QoS) tools. You’ll need to consider how many people in your household wish to be online at the same time and, based on what they’ll be using the internet for, how much bandwidth they all need.

Failure to take these key factors into account could affect your internet experience negatively. For example, a router that doesn’t offer high-speed Wi-Fi may manage blisteringly fast and stable speeds closer to the router but a slower and more unstable connection further away in another part of your home (note: there are several ways in which you can boost the signal, if necessary.) For the more digitally savvy, traffic management or QoS allows one to prioritize how one’s home network handles internet traffic. Without these features, online gamers may experience games as slow or unresponsive because their internet connection is affected by bandwidth-hungry services, such as streaming video, which other people in the household may be using.

What To Look For In a Router

Choosing the right router means that you’ll be able to have a fun time even if your fiber or DSL connection is on the slower side. Generally speaking, online games are more about the stability of your connection, the hardware that provides it and where the game servers are, than they are about pure bandwidth. This means that someone with a 10Mbps internet connection and the right router may have a better time gaming than someone with 100Mbps and the wrong router.

 A high-speed internet router.

There are dozens of options to consider, so when purchasing a router, look for a device that supports 5GHz/AC1200 Wi-Fi and ideally offers traffic management or QoS features. Although routers that provide these features can be found for as little as $60, you may need to spend more, depending on how many people in your household use the internet or how big your home is. Some of the most high-end routers go for as much as $450. Bear in mind that it’s the router, together with the actual internet service you access with it, that provides your connection, so try to get the two working together seamlessly before you start.

Once you have a stable internet connection to provide you with a fun online casino games experience, you need the right hardware to play on, whether that’s a computer or mobile device. Your choice of hardware can make the difference between a buttery-smooth gaming experience and one that is playable but choppy. Take a look at the recommended specifications for computer hardware and mobile devices.

Computer Hardware

When it comes to PC gaming, hardware can have a significant impact on your experience. The hardware of your device is significantly strained when you play online games, since gaming requires real-time communication between the server and the player. Plus, with the graphics of online games getting better and better, computers need a lot more processing power for them to run smoothly. This is why online gamers will spend so much money on PCs with a high-end CPU, GPU, and RAM. 

While many people may not know the difference between AMD and Intel, dual-core or quad-core or a CPU and a GPU, the good news is that, as far as online casino games are concerned, you don’t really need to. Online casinos and the developers of online casino games have made online gambling a lot more accessible. Many of today’s entry-level computers, whether laptops or desktops, provide enough horsepower to run most gambling games. Plus, the developers of online casino games, in an effort to make their games more convenient and accessible, are focusing more on mobile casino gaming and making more mobile-friendly games that can be played on any device. So, you don’t need a top-of-the-range computer with expensive PC hardware for gaming at an online casino. Even if you can only shop at a place like Walmart or Target, you’re still likely to find a cheap computer that can run all your favorites.

However, just because these games run doesn’t mean the experience will be ideal (or even, in some cases, fun to play.) That’s why this blog gives you a brief breakdown of what to look for in a desktop or laptop computer so that you can be sure that your computer’s hardware meets the recommended specifications for a smooth and lag-free casino gaming experience.

What To Look For In a Desktop or Laptop

Whether you’re buying a Mac, desktop computer or getting a PC built for you, these are the PC hardware specifications recommended to deliver a reasonably good experience.

Processor: Quad-Core

An AMD Ryzen 2200G (which features integrated graphics,) AMD Ryzen 3300X or Intel Core i3-10100 (which also features integrated graphics) will be fast enough for the majority of people who want to play gambling games. Apple Macs with a Core i5 processor or M1 chip will also provide more than enough speed. The only exception is if you’re buying a much older second-hand Mac with an older i5 chip, which may only come with a dual-core processor.

RAM: Minimum of 8 Gigabytes (GB)

While most online gambling games don’t need more than 4GB of RAM to run, if you want your computer to continue running smoothly while playing games, a minimum of 8GB is recommended. This is especially important since operating systems and web browsers are using increasing amounts of memory to run. If purchasing a Mac instead, you should still try to find a machine with 8GB of RAM.

Graphics Card: Integrated or Entry-Level Standalone

When it comes to graphics, two of the three processors recommended above have enough speed to run online gambling games. If you prefer a stand-alone graphics solution, just about any graphics card will do, so look at what suits your budget as well as your other gaming needs. Macs come pre-built and feature graphics cards or built-in graphics which are suitable for gambling games.

Main Storage Drive: SSD

Choose an SSD as your main storage drive: speed-wise, even the fastest traditional hard drives struggle to keep up with budget solid-state drives (SSDs.) If you can, make sure your desktop computer has an SSD as its primary storage device since this will speed up the majority of things you do on your computer. Again, budget is the main factor here — you get what you pay for. Also, be aware that while SSDs are much faster, they are usually smaller, so a combination of an SSD and a regular hard drive is best for the perfect mix of speed and storage space.

Mobile Hardware

A young man raises his fist in victory after winning a mobile game.

Mobile gaming and mobile online casino gambling specifically are on the rise and no longer thought of as a “niche” industry. In 2021, there were a total of 155 million mobile video gamers in the U.S. alone, thanks to impressive advances in technology and smartphone specs, all of which have taken the mobile gaming experience to new heights. 

As technology continues to advance and the mobile gaming market continues to grow, there’s no doubt that many developers will be focusing their attention on creating online casino slots, live dealer casino games and casino table games that can be played on mobile devices — and some of them exclusively for mobile.

If you’re interested in casino gaming on a mobile device, there are a lot of different hardware specifications you can look out for, but generally speaking, the more expensive the phone, the faster the hardware that is powering it. While this idea does, to some degree, also apply to desktop computers, it’s entirely possible to customize an affordable PC to play gambling games well. With most mobile devices, however, you can’t customize the hardware.

So, instead of going into excessive detail about hardware specifications, here’s one simple rule to follow: if you spend at least $400 on a new iPhone, $300 on a new iPad (if you can find the right deal,) $250 on a new Android phone or $230 on a new Android tablet, you should be purchasing a device that offers you very reasonable performance when using a casino games app.

Troubleshooting Tips for If You Can’t Access an Online Casino

Playing an online casino game should be entertaining and exciting, but when you can’t access your favorite online casino, it can become frustrating quite quickly. So, what can you do about it? Here are some common troubleshooting tips for common access issues to ensure that your gaming experience is as seamless as possible.

1. Check Your Internet Connection

Because you don’t need extensive PC hardware for gaming at an online casino, it is probably best to check your internet connection before looking into any technical fixes. If your connection is shaky, you might experience lag, disconnections, or difficulty accessing the casino platform. 

2. Check the System Requirements

Most online casinos display the minimum system requirements you need to play their games on their website. Compare this information to your computer’s specs to ensure your device meets system requirements. Unfortunately, as accessible as online casino gaming is, it is still possible for outdated hardware to hinder your gaming experience. 

3. Clear Your Cache

Your computer or mobile device’s cache and storage can build up and store a lot of unnecessary data, affecting your gaming performance. To address this, try clearing your browser’s cache. This often helps resolve basic speed issues and improve loading times. 

4. Storage Cleanup

If you want to improve your PC performance, consider deleting files and apps that you no longer need or use to free up some storage space. A clutter-free device runs smoother.

5. Change Your Browser or Reinstall the App

Sometimes, access problems are browser-specific or tied to faulty app installation. So, if you’re having trouble playing casino games online, try using a different web browser. If you’re using a mobile app like the BetMGM Sportsbook App, for example, consider deleting it and reinstalling it from the app store to try and resolve any app-related access issues. 

6. Contact Customer Support

Reputable online casinos value their players and strive to provide excellent customer support through live chat or email support. Don’t hesitate to seek assistance if you’re facing persistent issues — they are usually eager to assist wherever possible to resolve your issues promptly.

In most cases, following these troubleshooting steps should have you back to enjoying your favorite casino games hassle-free. Remember, a smooth gaming experience starts with a reliable internet connection and a bit of technical know-how. Stay patient, and you’ll soon be back in the virtual casino world, chasing that jackpot.

Play Play All Your Favorite Casino Games Online with BetMGM

Whether you prefer to play on your mobile phone, tablet or computer, it’s important to know that your hardware (and internet connection/service) is up to the task of handling both old and new casino games. Once you’ve made sure that it is, you need to choose an online casino that has all the games you enjoy and offers great casino odds — an online casino like BetMGM.

At BetMGM, you can enjoy a wide variety of gaming experiences with great casino odds on your devices. If you enjoy playing games live at a casino online, be sure to check out the live dealer casino games. If you want to strike it big, try out the jackpot online slots at the casino. And if you’re a fan of casino table games like craps and roulette, there are dozens of games for you to choose from. BetMGM is known for its ever-growing menu, as well as for offering the best slots to play at a casino online.

Whatever you like to play, feel free to register at BetMGM today to join in the fun and excitement.

Wondering how to play roulette at a casino? Or maybe you’re looking for the best casino games to play while flying? The blog is full of interesting topics and bursting with insights to help you learn more about games and online casino culture. Be sure to explore further.

Actress Vanessa Hudgens flipping casino chips next to the text "The King of Casinos"
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Our BetMGM editors and authors are casino experts with a wealth of knowledge of the online casino industry at all levels. Their coverage includes company news, game reviews, how-to instructional articles, strategy guides, and editorials showcasing BetMGM’s superior product and game library.

Our BetMGM editors and authors are casino experts with a wealth of knowledge of the online casino industry at all levels. Their coverage includes company news, game reviews, how-to instructional articles, strategy guides, and editorials showcasing BetMGM’s superior product and game library.