While the likes of Michael Faraday, Thomas Edison, and Isaac Newton were all smart minds whose inventions changed the world forever, it is Bob Kahn and Vinton Cert who are credited with the best and greatest invention of all time: the internet. This invention brought about a total revolution never seen before and since then, life, businesses, relationships – name them – have never been the same. From entertainment and jobs to everything else, the internet has opened up a whole world of opportunities for the young and old, to say the least. One of those opportunities is online casinos, the gist of this piece of writing.
An online casino is a website which takes wagers on virtual and/or live dealer casino games from gamblers in various parts of the world. Another name for an online casino is a virtual casino. While some online casinos also offer sports betting, others focus mainly on offering casino games such as poker, blackjack, slots, roulette, and baccarat. And having witnessed increased popularity from the 1990’s as a result of technological improvement, these gaming portals are regulated to ensure they offer free and fair gambling while, at the same time, protecting players.
In their day-to-day activities, the majority of online casinos survive by relying on other firms, which produce and supply casino games. The list of such firms is long but there are brands that lead whilst others follow.
Since the time of the maiden virtual casino, the question about the legality of such entities has always been posed. And the more the above question is answered, the more it is asked. In many jurisdictions, online casino operators have constantly been facing off with lawmakers in courts, in a bid to legalise their operations. And while most countries in Europe have legalised online casinos, the operators of these entities cannot claim to have fully won the legal battles. Then in other countries like india, casinos are legal but not regulated. A few regulated markets unclude the UK, Sweden and Denmark. As a matter of fact, there are jurisdictions where the situation is complicated. The United States is one such jurisdiction. The country allows online casino operations in only a few states, including Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware. Thus, whether online casino operations are legal or illegal depends on the country.
With no online casino ready to accept the tag, ‘bad,’ separating the wheat from the chaff becomes a complex phenomenon. Yes, there are thousands of such sites; maybe tonnes, with some extremely good and others extremely bad. Others are neither hot nor cold.
While most people give generic answers (e.g. banking methods, excellent support, etc) in trying to address the above question, none of them seem to score 5/5. While a good online casino can be defined by dozens of factors, the two biggest factors are the software, the bonuses and the promotions.
The software is important because it is what determines the number of games an online casino offers. A casino with, for instance, 1500 games is far better than a site with 500 games. Less games means that casino players may not find all they need in a single virtual roof, and this will force them into signing up to multiple casinos. Typically, the number of games is determined by the game developers an online casino works with, so that a casino which works with NetEnt alone may not have as many games as one which works with both NetEnt and Evolution Gaming.
Still on games, the software does not only determine the number of games, but also the game variations a casino offers. This ensures that players of a particular casino game have access to different varieties of the same game. In the case of roulette, for instance, players can choose to play either French, European, or the American roulette.
While the software impacts games, some online casinos may have almost the same software and similar games. In that case, the software may not be the game changer, but bonuses and promotions will be. And since playing casino games online involves losing money, taking advantage of any free money offered is absolutely necessary. Like the games, promotions are not the same everywhere; some online casinos offer better deals than others. And some promotions are game-specific, so it is necessary for players to know beforehand whether the games they are playing count towards certain bonuses or promotions. Bonuses and promotions can be cash prizes, free spins or free game play amongst other offerings.
Depositing money at any online casino is similar to shopping online, and while banking methods differ, the gist remains the same. The process involves locating the Cashier button, selecting a banking option, entering banking details and amount, and pressing/clicking the Submit button. While the list of deposit options is long, popular ones include prepaid cards, bank wire transfers, e-wallets, debit cards, and credit cards. Deposits can take anywhere between zero minutes to one hour to process, depending on the method used and the casino.
Cashing out, unlike depositing, takes some time (up to a few business days), which varies from one withdrawal option to another. The delay is not meant to punish players; rather, it is for safety reasons to ensure the money goes to the real owners. Most payment solutions used for deposits are also applicable for withdrawals, and the process for cashing out is typically the same as that for depositing, save for the fact that a players needs to select “Withdraw,” rather than “Deposit.” To add on the options mentioned in the previous section, paper cheques and e-cheques can also be used to request withdrawals at online casinos.
Despite the fun and cash players get at online casinos, there is the bad side of online casino gaming: the possibility of causing addiction. To curb that, the majority of online casinos implement certain measures. In fact, these measures are a prerequisite for licensing, and they include self-exclusion, loss limits, timeout periods, and deposit limits.