The first online gambling website opened 10 years ago, paving the way for the hundreds now on the internet. An Australian government review in 2001 estimated the number of online players worldwide at just under five million, with over $ 11 billion spent on Internet casinos [reference].
But is gambling online different from casino gambling, and what is the appeal of playing at home alone rather than in a casino? In this article, we will see what online gambling is like, find out how it pays to play, and discuss the legality of online gambling.
Online gambling differs from personal casino gambling in some obvious ways. There is little or no interaction between the players and the dealer. In fact, there is no distributor – all games are run by computer software. People who have tried both types of games say that online games like poker or blackjack tend to be faster than their real-life counterparts because there is no conversation between players to slow things down.
Online casinos can offer dozens of different games. One site contains slot machine games based on licensed comic book characters, while another has computerized versions of traditional casino games. Most of the games are decorated with excellent graphics and sound effects, just like real slot machines. Players can check the rules of each game and see a chart showing the payouts with the click of a button.
A short survey of one of the best casino sites shows over 60 games, including blackjack, baccarat, craps, various versions of roulette, no less than twenty slot machine games, keno, and various video poker games. The established rules of the games reflect their real-life counterparts. In video poker or blackjack, players make decisions about which cards can affect the outcome of the game.
There are also sites that offer online sports betting, which is another form of gambling. These sites allow users to place bets on sports competitions of all kinds, as well as other events such as political races or the results of reality shows. The sites offer their own odds, which in some cases are better than those offered by traditional Las Vegas sportsbooks (due in part to the low cost required to run an online betting site). Many online casinos offer “instant play” versions of their games, which generally run within a web browser using Java. Players can also download casino software and play games in a separate application. Some sites offer the download option just to play. Players can try the games for free with a full gambling account of a few thousand dollars. Of course, these games do not pay real money.
There is a difference in the possibilities between the “Play for fun” version and the real money versions of online games. Although this cannot be confirmed, experimenting with the “play for fun” versions in many online casinos often results in huge fake bank accounts. If real money games pay that amount too, the casinos will quickly go out of business. Success in “play for fun” games does not mean success when real money is at stake.