How smartphones changed online gambling

When people talk about technology changing the world we always think about things like solar power or other energy forms, electric cars, space travel, or even that big daddy of innovation and frustration – the Internet.

And sure, when it comes to something that has fundamentally changed how we as humans interact with the world around us, then there is nothing quite as society changing as the World Wide Web.

Or is there?

We, the CasinoPlay crew, would argue that the rise of the smartphone has done just as much to change our daily lives as the Internet – and nowhere more so than in the online casino world.

The invention of the mobile phone changed communications forever. And then the rise of the smartphone evolved it into a tool that sits in almost every pocket of every person on the planet.

How many times do you look at your smartphone and actually think about what this little device has done? Before you would have to have a backpack to carry all your stuff. A camera, a music player like a Walkman or Discman, a wallet full of cash and cards, a compass, a map, a diary or planner to keep you up to date on your daily doings, a laptop to do your daily doings, a calculator, and so on.

Now you have EVERYTHING on a device you can fit into a pocket.

It’s insane!

And it’s fundamentally changed our lives – and our gambling habits.

smartphones online gambling

The smartphone revolution

It’s not often that we on this beautiful continent of Africa get to lead the way when it comes to technology, but Africa and smartphones go together like…well, like smartphones and daily life.

Africa has one of the highest uses of smartphones in the world. It’s due in a major part to how inaccessible some of our areas are, and to our population groups.

It’s far easier to put up a cellphone tower that can link to smartphone users than it is to lay cables for fibre or ADSL. Using this infrastructure has brought access to the web to millions across the continent who would otherwise be stuck in a technological limbo.

Add in a very young population (Africa has the world’s youngest population with the average age of Africans sitting at the 15-year-old mark). These young early adopters have embraced smartphones and their relative cost effectiveness compared to PCs or laptops. It’s far cheaper to get a smartphone than it is to get a laptop that can do the same things as a good phone can.

All of this has led to a smartphone revolution across the continent – and has given our people access to information and opportunities they never had before.

And a big part of that is access to games, entertainment – and online gambling.

Better accessibility to online casinos

Our smartphones have come a long, long, looong way since the days of Snake on a Nokia 6110. South Africans probably know that the computing power on our latest smartphones is even better than that which allowed us to travel to the moon. The latest iPhones, and Androids, and Samsungs, etc have over 100,000x (some say even millions of times more) the computing power of the systems that were used to get those first astronauts onto the surface of our closest satellite. In fact, a lot of the top end smartphones are now more powerful that most entry-level to mid-range laptops. All in the palm of your hand!

This means that we now have access, and speed, to do far more on these handy little devices. Like jump onto the Internet whenever we feel like it. And visit our favourite online casinos whenever we’re in the mood.

Where we had to travel to go to a land-based casino, now the casino travels to us. And where we once had to rely on a bulky desktop to browse to the casino, now our mobile browsers shoot us far beyond the moon in an instant!

With over 3.8 billion smartphones in the market (at a conservative estimate) more and more players are turning to mobile casinos. And the technology is improving at such a rate that it’s rare to find a mobile casino that doesn’t offer an experience just as good as if you visited using a desktop.

Dot Com Infoway, in their “Mobile Game Market Trends 2020” article, estimated that the mobile games market would grow to $100 BILLION by 2023. Currently, mobile games have a 51% share of the market, followed by console games at 25%, and PC games at 24%. Now, we do understand that these are all forms of gaming entertainment but, if even the traditional channels of PlayStation, Xbox, and high-end gaming PCs are showing that gamers are just as comfortable playing from their mobiles as they are waiting to get home to play on other devices, then we can see how far the mobile gambling and casino world is about to move.

Speaking of going home to game, the phenomenal growth is all down to accessibility and quality. It’s easy to use your mobile device to get your game on wherever you are, and the graphics and sound quality are unbelievable thanks to gaming software advances and tech.

smartphones online gambling

More convenience

Apart from the convenience of having your casino gaming entertainment centre in your hand wherever you are, the security advances in the online and internet banking world makes your payment easier and more convenient.

Rather than walking around with a wallet bulging with filthy lucre (that’s dirty money for those who are thinking we’re referring to fodder for feeding cattle), now you can bank and pay straight from your smartphone. (Just a note: even in this age of digital currency and eWallets and virtual banking, we still wish we had a wallet bulging with cold, hard cash rather than with receipts and prophylactics way past their use-by dates.)

PayPal, Apple Pay, eWallets, and eBanking have changed how we pay for things – not only online, but in the real world too. And online and mobile casinos have taken to these innovative practices with open arms. Being the forward-looking industry that it is, the virtual gambling world is leading the way in offering different banking methods for players so they can play in real money from their devices with confidence and safety.

If you are playing at a licensed, reputable, trusted mobile casino, you are playing with a partner who has invested a ton of money into making sure your banking methods are fully secure, encrypted, and safe.

Which makes getting real money into and out of your mobile casino account super convenient.

More technology

We’ve already mentioned how tech advances have changed the mobile scene, but it also works the other way – especially from the casino side of things.

The online casino industry – never mind the gaming industry as a whole – is worth a staggering amount of money. And there are a lot of companies who want a slice of that pie. Which means there are a lot of companies hiring a lot of very bright people to develop software and technology that will shift the mobile world even further into the future.

Like the adult entertainment industry changed the VCR world (remember the Betamax vs VHS battle of the 80’s? – yep, once the adult entertainment industry adopted VHS as a format, Betamax disappeared), the craving for entertainment options from a mobile audience has driven innovation that is being seen across the world.

Most of these innovations will be tested using an audience that is happy to take risks, that is open to new things, that is willing to take a chance – sound familiar? That’s because these are the characteristics of the online gambler, and this is the perfect audience to test and tweak products that will bring even more innovation to the mobile market.

In the beginning of the online casino age – way back in the olden days of 1990’s – players were able to play basic versions of poker. Fast forward 30 years and you have every conceivable casino game a South African punter could wish for, including Live Dealer games where you have the actual real life casino experience, all brough to you via a device a little larger than a pack of cards.

And these innovations are driving entertainment. From games to movies to concerts to TV show, everything can be streamed, and everything can be accessed from your smartphone.

smartphones online gambling

More interaction

And all this innovation leads to more interaction. The better the platforms, the more choice, the greater the immersion, the more players start spending time on the mobile casinos. And the more the mobile casinos invest in bringing an even better product to the players. Winner, winner, chicken dinner for everyone!

And it keeps on growing

The future of mobile casinos and mobile casino games is definitely bright. Every time a new technology or new software comes to market we, as the players, are treated to new ways of enjoying our games. VR and AR are the big news at the moment, and we can already see casinos starting to bring in a more interactive and more immersive quality to our games.

Mobile phone makers were in a war for years to see who could bring out the smallest handset. Ironically, it’s now a war to see who can bring the crispest clarity to high-def screens that marry size with convenience – the biggest possible edge-to-edge screens without becoming too bulky.

Foldable screens are another innovation gaining momentum and, if you can one day have a screen that folds out to any size you want, we are on track for true sci-fi territory.

Processing power keeps advancing and, if Moore’s Law has anything to do with it, we will soon have the capability in our smartphone that was only every dreamed of in the realm of supercomputers and Cray systems.

All of which leads in only one direct – even better experiences for all of us South African online gamblers and online casino game fans!