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Online Casino Trends 2021-2030: What The Future Holds
Tuesday, 17 August 2021
We hear a lot about different online casino trends. Newspaper articles, magazines, podcasts, and speakers at iGaming conferences always talk about what the new, up-and-coming technologies and features are. But which are just flash in the pans, and which are here to stay? Let’s take a look at some of the casino trends we expect to see.
Virtual casinos are already under (virtual) construction. Earlier this year, Atari announced they were creating their casino located in Decentraland, a blockchain-based metaverse built by Decentral Games. Atari has leased property in the virtual world to house the casino for two years. But aside from this, other virtual technologies such as virtual reality are set to become prominent in gambling.
The creation of VR casinos and VR gambling games will further boost the sector. By bridging the gap between real-life and virtual experiences, players can feel more involved in the experience. It’s also helping with onboarding new demographics hungry for technology and more immersive experiences.
Live dealer games
Live dealer casino games such as poker, baccarat, blackjack, and roulette have been around for some time, but recently they’ve become more popular. They are considered as one of the leading online casino trends of the moment. As more people opt to play casino games online, there comes a desire to engage and even socialize. As land-based casinos decline in terms of accessibility and popularity, the online space continues to grow. It’s likely that in the next few years, online will overtake land-based. A big part of this will be live dealer games that interact with the dealer and other players.
Live dealer games also instil more trust in players. They feel more secure when they see a human doing the dealing and are likely to spend more. If they are engaging and conversing, they’re also more likely to play for longer. Bringing smooth, fast, and interactive live dealer games of varying times is a great way to boost customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Mobile and progressive apps
Mobiles are fast becoming the number one way to access online gambling sites. There is and still will be a desktop market, but the trend is definitely towards mobile. Many players like to download a well-made app and use it to play their favourite games. Apps have high security, are fully customizable, and use less data than a website.
The alternative is progressive apps. Otherwise known as pApps, they are applications that work on any platform and don’t require downloading. They look like an app, act like an app, but you don’t need to install them like an app. The use of these apps is snowballing, and big-name brands like Starbucks, BMW, and UBER have all started using them. Benefits in the gambling industry are huge, notably offering a superior gambling experience to those who don’t want to download an app.
Blockchain and crypto
Much has been written about the benefits of integrating crypto and blockchain into the gambling sector. For over a decade, the popularity of both technologies has grown, culminating in their becoming online casino trends. Blockchain is immutable, secure, and provides a trustworthy audit trail. It can also integrate smart contracts, self-executing contracts which can manage a variety of processes. For operators, this makes compliance, payments, dispute management, transactions, and onboarding significantly easier.
In terms of cryptocurrency, allowing crypto payments on a site can make your platform much more accessible to players. Those without bank cards or who don’t want to use their bank account with a gambling site can use cryptocurrency with no problems. Transactions are also faster and can cost less than with fiat. Lastly, as crypto payments take place on the blockchain, there is little room for debate if a dispute arises.
The definition of a skill-based game is programmed to reward a player based on how well they play the game. They are different from other gambling games, typically luck-based and dependent on random number generators or similar. The vast majority of online casino games are luck-based, for example, slots, lottery, scratchcards, roulette, etc. Games such as fantasy sports, poker, and some other fringe games, are considered games of skill.
There has been much talk about incorporating more skill-based games into gambling, but so far, little has materialized. Some skill-based titles have been launched, hoping that momentum will increase, resulting in more skill-based games and keen players. Such games will likely drive a new demographic of players and gamblers, which is great news for operators. We will probably see skill-based games develop into online casino trends in the coming years.
Smartwatch and device gambling
The concept of smartwatch gambling has been around since 2014. Since then, several game developers have rolled out gambling games that work via smartphones of different kinds. For now, the number of casinos optimized for smartwatches is low, mainly due to limitations such as screen size. But the figures for the next few years look promising. The smartwatch sector should peak at $88 billion in the next six years.
This, combined with growth in online gambling and demand from consumers for on-the-go solutions, means it’s likely to become one of the online casino trends of the moment. As a result, gambling operators are looking at ways to develop platforms and games for smartphones. This also applies to other intelligent devices such as speakers and home assistants. Through the integration of Internet of Things technology, the network of devices that consumers can gamble on will increase, as will revenue for operators.
Provably fair games
Licensed gambling operators need to be able to prove their games are fair. In most licensing jurisdictions, this is an ongoing requirement of having a license. Until now, Random Number Generators and third-party certifications took care of these issues. But now, provably fair is giving another option. Provably fair is an algorithm-based fairness indicator that saves the results on the blockchain. This means that players can check for themselves whether the game and transaction are fair. As it’s blockchain-based, it’s immutable and cannot be tampered with.
A growing number of jurisdictions are accepting provably fair, and it’s fast becoming one of the main online casino trends. Benefits of the concept include a high level of trust for players, a higher RTP, and no need for third-party authentication.