For as long as there has been civilisation, there has been gambling in some form, and after thousands of years, the gambling industry has culminated into the online casino. The online casino scene, although relatively young in the grand scheme of things, is among one of the most popular pastimes in the world, and millions of people all over the world play their favourite casino games online every single day.
Today we have countless casino websites offering countless more games, all connected by the far-reaching power of the Internet. Anyone with an internet connection can now log into the casino of their choice and begin playing one of the thousands of games available, and now that the mobile market is in its prime, the casino industry has grown even more.
Before there was all this, however, the online casino had humble beginnings that can be dated back to the early 1990s.
The First Online Casinos
In the early 1990s, the Internet was still in its infancy, but many saw its massive potential early on. It was this potential that made some companies start creating special operating licences for casinos, and so in 1994, the first licences were distributed around the world.
These licences gave new, blossoming online companies the freedom to create gambling websites that sat outside of the laws and regulations that had restricted physical casinos for so long. Companies like Playtech and Microgaming were some of the first to develop the online casino, and while these sites were quite basic mechanically, they caught on like wildfire across developed countries.
Post 2000s Online Casinos
The industry grew slowly over the next ten years, and it was until the new millennium had arrived that things truly started to expand. More people had access to the Internet, which meant more people could now log onto different online casinos. As demand increased, so did competition, and new casinos sprang up every day.
It wouldn’t be until 2005 when online casinos began expanding into the mobile online slots market. While cellphones were relatively primitive compared to modern smart phones, many could still support Internet usage, and casinos were quick to capitalise on this, albeit to a limited degree.
Two years later, in 2007, the first smart phones had arrived in the form of the first iPhone, and it was at this point that the mobile casino industry really began to boom. People now had the opportunity to not just play their favourite games online, but could do so at any time of the day and from any location.
Modern Online Casinos
The online casino industry has remained largely the same since 2010, and continues to grow with each passing year. This is an unprecedented time for gambling, and it is estimated that the gambling world brings in over $18 billion annually, making it one of the most profitable industries in the world.
High speed, cheap broadband and state-of-the-art technology has ushered in a new era of casino gameplay, and it is anyone’s guess as to how the online casino will continue to evolve in the future.