Every online casino is intent on increasing its profits. Different operators use different methods for this purpose: some are attracting new clients with the use of engaging bonus programs and massive game offering, others are launching promotional web campaigns aimed at a large audience.There is, however, another vital point: maximizing the time players spend in the casino. In order to do this, you need them to always have the casino in the pocket, not only on their PCs. Mobile casinos fully meet these demands. They are available anywhere: in public transport and in queues, at cafes and hotels, and even outside city limits. All it takes is a smartphone with Internet access.So, what is a mobile casino? It is a mobile version of an online casino which is designed for smartphones and tablets and compatible with one or more operating systems. Virtually any online casino is initially designed for PC, with the exception of the rare cases when designers use a mobile-first approach and make a mobile version before a PC one.
Types of mobile casinos
There are two big groups of mobile casinos: browser-based andapp-based. The former work like normal websites. They have the same URL as the main website but sometimes may be located on a sub domain.Mobile apps are installed on smartphones and tablets and work independently of a website. Generally, they are available for downloading on a casino’s website. This is especially the case for Android applications: Google Play prohibits gambling products whereas iOS apps are freely available at AppStore. At the current time operators are slowly moving away from applications.
What do mobile casinos offer?
A typical mobile casino contains the same text elements as its desktop version: Terms & Conditions, FAQ, etc. It has fewer images: after all, the small screen size has its limitations. For users’ convenience, a website’s navigation is typically hidden in a hamburger button or in another drop-down menu. Overall, a mobile website’s content has no essential differences from its desktop original. So, what does a regular player want when they visit a mobile casino?
a possibility of receiving the same bonuses as in a desktop version: a deposit bonus, cash back, free spins, etc. Needless to say, a user wants not only to receive them, but also to wager these bonuses on their mobile device. Some operators design bonuses exclusively for smartphones and tablets: for example, a welcome bonus which is available only for mobile users;
an access to payment systems for deposits and withdrawals;
a customer support via chat, email, or phone;
preferably, a presence of live dealer games. This is unfortunately a rare occurrence for mobile casinos. Mobile Internet channel is not strong enough for an uninterrupted broadcast which is quite demanding on connection bandwidth;
a decent games offering with a user-friendly interface (ideally with a landscape mode) and a free demo with no registration required. Many mobile casinos offer demo mode only for registered players.
Flash vs HTML5
When the first online games came out in the second half of the 1990s, smartphones did not exist yet and those games were developed only for PC using Flash technology. In 2007,with the first iPhone coming out, gambling software providers started to look closely at this new trend, while continuing to make slots for PC. Mobile traffic kept increasing over the years and a variety of large providers (Betsoft, NetEnt, etc.) decided to enter the mobile segment.But there lied a problem: slots (and obviously other games, but their percentage in any provider’s arsenal is quite small) used Flash which, unfortunately for the developers, was not supported by Apple’s operating system. As for Android, it stopped supporting Flash after the 4.1 version of the OS. Therefore, for complete compatibility with mobile devices, gambling companies had to redevelop existing slots using HTML5. For instance, when the transition to HTML5 started in 2010-2012, Microgaming already had a few hundreds of Flash games. This process is still going on, that is why any games provider has less mobile slots than desktop solutions.Nowadays, almost all gambling providers rely entirely on HTML5 technology to power their games. The advantages of this technology are manifold. For instance, you don’t need to install any add-ons, as everything is browser-based. The development of games is faster overall, and the graphics and audio effects are superior in every regard than the ones present in Flash. Finally, while Flash-based technology is slowly being abandoned, there are no signs of HTML5 becoming obsolete.
Mobile Gambling Trends to Look for in 2021
Mobile gambling continues to be the driving force of the entire industry, and the 2020 coronavirus pandemic is another testament to that fact. This year, we can expect to see some momentous changes in the mobile gambling sphere, and here are the most important trends to follow:
5G Networks — By some estimates, the 5G mobile network is expected to account for almost a quarter of all mobile connections by 2025. In 2021, its implementation across the globe is set to continue, and with it, huge improvements will come. For example, thanks to a greater internet speed, there will be no bandwidth issues anymore, so you’ll be able to play multiplayer casino games without worrying about your connection. Also, the stability that comes with the 5G network will allow casino users to have a more seamless gaming experience on the go. Finally, the overall quality of games in terms of graphics, visuals, and gameplay will be much better since the devices the big tech companies create will have to have more CPU power and better characteristics to meet the requirements of 5G technology.
VR Technology — Virtual or Augmented Reality has been around for some years now, but the way mobile casino players and operators can use has been getting consistently better. With better VR devices and a faster internet speed, mobile casino players can expect to enjoy the most immersive gaming experience imaginable, no matter where they are.
Artyom is Head of White Label & Turnkey Solutions and has been working in complex B2B/B2C sales, as well as business development and management consulting in iGaming for more than 10 years.
Together with the Key Account Management Team, he has helped over 100 start-ups and experienced gaming companies to launch their projects with SoftGamings.