Technologies That Have Influenced Online Casino Games

min read
Online slot game with pink neon number sevens, with casino chips, ace playing cards on black color background.
BetMGM Jul 14, 2021, 10:29 AM

The most impressive technological advances are often the ones we take for granted. They’re so good that we adopt them and forget about them. Do you remember what it was like before the Internet? Would you want to? Technology has only one purpose: to serve us and improve our lives. This also applies to online casino gaming.

Online casino technology has continually improved the player’s gaming experience. This boils down to online casino games that are more fun and more convenient to play. Take a look at some of the most important ways technology has affected how you play these casino games, including live dealer casino games and the best mobile casino games.

Taking the Casino Online

The biggest thing to happen to the casino gaming industry has to be the Internet. The first online gambling venture was ticketing for the Liechtenstein International Lottery, which opened to the public in October 1994. Around the same time, Microgaming developed the first fully functional gambling software combined with CryptoLogic’s online security software. This enabled the first online casinos to go live in 1994. With this development, people could play casino online games in the comfort of their own homes.

The processing power of desktop PCs was somewhat limited back then, so the first online games were 2D versions of card and table games such as blackjack, poker, and roulette. As technology progressed, developers could produce more complex games. In 1998, Microgaming brought out the first online casino slot, called Cash Splash. It was a basic, progressive jackpot adaptation of the classic Vegas fruit machine. 

For a more dynamic slot that stays faithful to the ever-popular fruit machine theme, try Cash Eruption at BetMGM. This popular online slot is set in an Aztec temple and has a 5-reel, three-row layout. Developed by IGT, it features 20 fixed paylines and offers various bonus features, including the Pattern feature, Cash Eruption bonus, and Free Spins feature.

Making the Move to Mobile

Desktop-based online gaming was a step up from having to travel to a land-based casino, but it had its limitations. What really brought online slots and games into the 21st century was mobile technology, especially the invention of the smartphone. Mobiles had games on them before — the first mobile game to truly capture people’s attention was Nokia’s Snake in 1997 — but the introduction of smartphones with the launch of the iPhone in 2007 upped the ante with (relatively speaking) much bigger touchscreens and more powerful hardware that could produce high-quality graphics and audio. Now, players can access authentic versions of their favorite casino games anytime, anywhere.

Mobile gamers had the first chance to play a dedicated mobile slot game online in 2005, with a 3×3 game called Pub Fruity. Unfortunately, no money was involved, which eliminated much of the excitement of playing. Real-money mobile gaming only really took off in 2007, when Microgaming brought out a mobile version of baccarat. As the processing power of smartphones increased, developers started launching mobile versions of slots. A mobile version of NetEnt’s classic Gonzo’s Quest came out in 2011, and you can still play it on BetMGM’s mobile casino app. 

Mobile gaming is now a completely viable alternative to desktop and laptop computers in the online casino space. The processing power of today’s mobile devices makes desktop PCs from just a decade ago seem weak, and new casino games are automatically optimized for mobile devices, including tablets. For many gamers, it’s more fun to play casino table games, such as Double Bonus Spin Roulette and BetMGM Blackjack Pro, on a tablet, purely because the larger screen gives a better view while still being able to play using a mobile device.

Gaining Ground With Graphics

A screenshot of the retro video game called Pong.

None of these developments would be possible without the incredible advances in computing technology over the years. One area that has undoubtedly improved over time is graphics hardware, with even mobile devices able to deliver beautiful gaming experiences to players around the world. 

Computer images have evolved drastically since the first-ever video game, Pong, a 2D tennis game with graphics made of pixels, was released in 1972. Simple pixel graphics rapidly developed into more realistic pixel graphics, as seen in 1980s game favorites such as Mario Bros and Wolfenstein. 

Also, 3D games were coming to life, with the first-ever 3D title Battlezone, a tank battle simulator, appearing on screens in 1980. This interest in 3D worlds would eventually lead to the likes of shooting games like Quake and Half-Life in the mid-to-late 1990s. Today, video gamers can immerse themselves in ultra-realistic, incredibly detailed 3D worlds with titles like Cyberpunk 2077, Elden Ring, and F1 2021.

Now, you can expect a better playing experience with every technological advance. Of course, casino game developers pay close attention to the latest trends in graphic design. Slots, especially, showcase what developers can achieve with immersive themes and interactive bonus features that tell a story at the same time as they multiply your chances to win. Here are a few of the visually stunning slots you can enjoy at BetMGM: 

  • Book of Myths: An ancient Egyptian-themed slot game with a 5×3 grid layout, 10 paylines, and features like expanding symbols, free spins, and a Buy feature.
  • Chests of Gold: Power Combo: A highly volatile online slot inspired by Robin Hood with an above-average return to player (RTP) of 96.4%, three free spin modes, and four jackpots. 
  • Masters of Atlantis: Step into Poseidon’s underwater world, where you’ll enjoy medium volatility and an impressive RTP of 96.75%.
  • Hypernova Megaways: A ReelPlay game set in space, with a neon-lit supernova as the backdrop. It features 6 reels and, as with most Megaways slots, up to 117,649 ways to win.
  • Loot’En Khamun and the Dead Sea Scrolls: This medium volatility slot takes you on an Egyptian adventure to unearth ancient treasures with the help of 234 paylines. 

Another area where graphics have played a major role is virtual reality. Whether you’re looking at the future with ideas such as the Metaverse with its interconnected virtual 3D worlds or just looking to step into a virtual casino for a few spins on a virtual slot machine or roulette wheel, VR can now present believable 3D spaces that could barely have been imagined just a couple of decades ago. 

In the Loop With Interactive Audio

Audio is another technology that enabled the online casino industry to offer a better gaming experience. The first game with a soundtrack running continuously in the background was Space Invaders, way back in 1978. The soundtrack was only four notes in a loop, but it helped add to the interactive experience. The loop got faster and faster as the enemy aliens descended, making the player’s pulse race. From the start, it was clear that this kind of sound had the potential to improve gameplay.

Today, music and sound effects are part and parcel of the best mobile casino games and online casino games. Classic casino table games such as American Roulette and Blackjack Premium Pro — a BetMGM player favorite — benefit from ambient sounds that help create an authentic casino atmosphere. And for the best combination of audio and casino gaming, some fantastic music-themed slots really put sound at center stage. Jimi Hendrix, Guns N’ Roses, and Motörhead are some of the top-rated music slots that you can play online at BetMGM.

More Ways To Pay, More Fun To Play

Man playing an online slot on a tablet device.

It’s no secret that people play casino games for the chance to win real money. How to pay winning customers is an important technological question. The house actually handed the first cabinet slot players their winnings. This changed in 1963 with the invention of the Money Honey Slot. 

Known as the father of electromechanical slot machines, the Money Honey Slot allowed for automated payouts of up to 500 coins, providing a vast improvement to the player’s gaming experience at the time. Today, payout mechanisms have also gone digital, with online players’ winnings being deposited into their virtual casino accounts before being withdrawn directly to a player’s bank account. 

With digital payments and improvements in the hardware driving these games, online slot players now have more entertaining ways to win incredible prizes. Many other structures have joined the original 5×3-slot fixed-line format. 

BetMGM’s iconic Starburst slot, for instance, introduced paylines that let gamers win both ways. The 243-ways mechanism pays out any combination of three or more matching symbols on adjacent reels, while the cluster-pays mechanic pays out when symbols form winning patterns rather than lines.

Another ground-breaking innovation is simply massive — Megaways slots have a random reel modifier that changes the number of symbols on the reels every time you spin. Less predictable and more entertaining, these slots offer the possibility of even more wins, with some Megaways titles offering up to 117,649 winning combinations. Twin Spin Megaways and Fruit Shop Megaways are two examples of Megaways titles you can find at BetMGM.

Streaming Live Casinos

One of the most ground-breaking technological advances of recent years is live streaming. YouTube, Twitch.tv, Facebook, Instagram, and other live-streaming platforms provide a cost-efficient way to engage with thousands of people around the globe in real time. The implications for online casino gaming are huge, with one of the biggest impacts being the rise of live dealer platforms.

Players connect with a real live dealer in a state-of-the-art casino studio in live dealer casino games. This helps recreate the real-world casino experience from your own home, making it the most authentic way to play casino games online. For example, the cards in First Person Blackjack and the wheel in First Person Roulette are real, which adds to the feeling that you’re right there in a brick-and-mortar casino. The décor in First Person Baccarat and First Person Dragon Tiger is exactly what you’d expect to find in a gambling hall in Macau, again adding to the atmosphere and helping you get immersed in the game.

The live dealer gaming interface allows you to communicate with the dealer and other players at the same table via a chatbox function. These live casino games also feature betting options that you won’t find anywhere else — for example, the “bet behind” feature, which allows you to bet on another player’s hand while you wait for a seat at the table. You can also call up your personal stats to inform your betting decisions.

Keeping You Safe

Security is one of the things you don’t want to think about when you’re enjoying the latest advances in online casino technology. Sometimes, the latest technology isn’t in your face — sometimes, you have to look under the hood. Fortunately, the industry has focused steadily on the latest digital encryption technology. At a legitimate online casino, such as BetMGM, you can rest assured that your personal and financial information is safe at all times.

Artificial intelligence, or AI, also plays an important part in ensuring a fair and fun gaming experience for everyone. While AI has numerous uses in an online casino, one of the ways it is helping keep you safe is by spotting dishonest players who are using tools to cheat. Using highly advanced algorithms, a computer can spot subtle trends and decisions that give cheaters away, making online casino gaming safer and enjoyable.

Hand-in-hand with security comes convenience. Thanks to advances in online payment technology, virtual casinos can accept many different payment methods, including prepaid cards, debit and credit cards, e-wallets, and bank transfers. While cryptocurrencies are still struggling to gain a foothold in mainstream society, we may soon be using this virtual money in all aspects of our lives. Some casinos have started to experiment with crypto, but we’ll have to wait and see what the future holds. 

No matter where you play, you’ll have a variety of payment options to ensure you can enjoy exciting real-money gaming. If you’re gambling at BetMGM, it’s important to note that payment methods vary slightly from region to region. 

Ensuring Fairness With Random Number Generators (RNGs)

As most gamblers who play casino online games know, games like online slots are dictated entirely by luck. While it’s possible to choose games with varying levels of volatility and higher hit rates, there isn’t much else to do to increase your odds when spinning those reels — and that’s because RNGs are working behind the scenes to ensure a fair and completely random outcome every time. RNGs undergo rigorous testing and certification by independent third-party agencies for extra peace of mind.

These algorithms have evolved from basic formulas to complex systems. In fact, modern RNGs often use cryptographic techniques, making them virtually impossible to predict, providing you with the assurance of a level playing field.

Blockchain and the Rise of Provably Fair Gaming

Blockchain, the technology behind cryptocurrencies, is making waves in the online casino world and leading the technological evolution. Its decentralized nature and immutable records have paved the way for “provably fair” online casino real money games. In these games, you can independently verify the fairness of each outcome, adding an extra layer of transparency and trust that traditional casinos often lack. This appeals to tech-savvy gamblers who value verifiable fairness and security. Here’s a breakdown of how it works:

  1. Seed generation: Before each game round, a random seed is generated by both the casino and the player. These seeds are combined to create a unique hash, a digital fingerprint that represents the game’s outcome.
  2. Hash sharing: The combined hash is provided to the player before the game starts. This ensures that the outcome can’t be manipulated after the fact.
  3. Gameplay: The game proceeds as usual, with the outcome determined by the combined seed and the game’s algorithm.
  4. Verification: After the game, the casino reveals its seed, allowing the player to combine it with their own seed and verify that the resulting hash matches the one provided before the game. This confirms the game’s fairness and eliminates any doubts about potential manipulation.

Enjoy the Wonders of Modern Casino Gaming at BetMGM

With your newfound appreciation for all things technological in the online casino world, why not explore everything on offer at BetMGM? When you register, you’ll gain access to a full range of online casino games, including online slots, table and card games, and live dealer casino games. Join in the fun from the website or the BetMGM casino games app — and don’t forget to grab your casino welcome bonus.

Actress Vanessa Hudgens flipping casino chips next to the text "The King of Casinos"
About the Author

BetMGM

Read More

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.