How technology has influenced the online gaming sector
Online gaming has been around since the early 2000s when the internet became widely available around the world. Nevertheless, nothing has grown and popularized online gaming in the past decade more than technological development. Back then, online gaming required that a person sits in front of a bulky computer and crappy internet to make bets and play against others. Today, you only need to use your smartphone and do much more.
The revenues generated by land casinos in 2016 worldwide totaled approximately $155 billion according to Statista. Many of those were contributed by the new players in the online bingo market in UK and other European countries. As for online gaming, the revenues reached $42.63 billion according to Transparency Market Research. Looking back, the online gaming industry only grossed $20.51 billion in 2009, which is less than half of last year’s revenues.
These numbers are expected to double once again by 2024 for online gaming, while revenues from land-based casinos may remain at about the same level. So, why has online gaming grown, and is expected to grow, so much? Technology is the answer, and here’s how.
Technological advancements in online gaming
Through the 2000s, more and more people were accessing the internet, but a majority of them were doing so through dial-up connections. These were slow and expensive, but when fibre-optic communication began to be rolled out, internet access was suddenly much faster. Telecommunication companies helped to bring fibre-optic internet access to residential homes, and there was a boom in internet use now that the internet was so efficient.
With better and faster internet access came video conferencing, which the online gaming sector converted into live casinos. Gamblers could now get an almost realistic experience of the casino from their homes due to technological advances. Before that, it had always felt like playing against bots, but now there was more of a human touch. Many online gaming sites now offer this service, and you can even view the actual players’ faces around the table.
The next technological development that spurred online gaming was the advent of portable devices. Today, most of the online gaming activities are conducted through smartphones rather than on computers. The first iPhone was launched in 2007, and since then, touchscreen devices with larger screens have become the norm.
Tablets and phablets followed soon thereafter, which were an even more effective online gaming tool. Now, any online gaming company will provide an accompanying app, which runs on portable devices, allowing their clients to participate while on the go.
When Wi-Fi became commonplace, it was even more possible to game online from a restaurant and even while on a plane. Even laptops got an upgrade, with the latest models being more powerful and having better battery life.
More technological advances coming to the industry
The latest fad in technology is virtual reality (VR) which is popular for watching videos and playing computer games. The technology is still very young, and there are still plenty of developments needed, but it shows us the next direction online gaming may take. Perhaps in the near future, it will be possible to participate in online gaming with a VR headset and get a very close experience to the real-world casino.