Technology has been a driving force in the gambling industry for the past three decades. Judging by the latest developments in the virtual reality realm, it’s not a trend that will subside soon.
The partnership between technology and casinos dates back to the 80s when land-based casinos were among the first to harness the potential of the computer chip and small screen in video poker machines.
With the advent of the internet, a new branch of the industry was born that pivoted into the virtual landscape, with mobile devices contributing to global expansion.
Now online casinos are gearing up for a new revolution. The VR trend redefines what we perceive as virtual, offering players an experience reminiscent of sci-fi stories.
What is VR?
The concept of virtual reality is one of a simulated environment powered by computer technology.
This is an idea that authors and filmmakers have been toying with for nearly a century. However, it’s been in the past couple of decades that technology has caught up to the concepts.
The new gadgets like VR headsets and graphic cards that have the binary power to recreate developers’ visions, have created a lot of buzz in the business tech world. Companies like Facebook are even rebranding as Meta to focus their corporate goals on virtual futures.
Yet again, online casinos were in the first wave of businesses to recognize the potential of the new technology. The first VR casino was launched in 2012.
Unfortunately, the low quality of the game’s graphics, a reflection of technological development at that time, did not create the expected boost. However, the embryonic phase of the technology’s development is long gone, and online casinos are getting ready for a more serious push in the VR arena.
VR enhances the online gambling experience
The immersive potential of augmented reality has gotten a lot of people excited, although not everyone is riding the hype train.
There have been skeptics who claim VR is nothing more than a gimmick for the industry, especially when one considers that 3D games never really took off as expected. With live dealer games gaining traction, it’s believed in some industry circles that the new technology will have more of a supporting role rather than fully take over platforms.
Yet the main argument for the expected dominance of VR is the interactivity it offers. Players will be able to experience a game with almost all their senses and feel they are actively participating in a card game.
With VR the headsets are only one aspect, users have gloves that enable them to take full control of the action in the virtual space. No more pressing a button to place the chips on a table or spin the roulette wheel.
The next gambling frontier
Although the catalog of VR games is currently modest, when compared with the sea of video slots available in online casino lobbies, there is an increased appetite among players and developers to expand the current offer.
“There’s massive interest in virtual reality from players, with up to 15% of users spinning slots with VR on their mobile phones. It’s only a matter of time before VR casinos become the ultimate choice,” says Ryan White, author and industry insider.
This opinion gets confirmed by some of the new popular releases that are available in VR online casinos, such as:
● Casino VR Poker
● Bullet VR Roulette
● VR Blackjack
● VR Casino
● Apollo Slots VR
● Big Spin Slots on Gear VR
There are hundreds of games adapted for VR casinos, but the games listed are tailored specifically for the VR concept, offering greater immersion and interactivity.
Most new games are pivoting towards card games, and research has found that players gravitate towards poker and roulette tables.
The VR Gear is on course
The mass acceptance of VR online casinos is dependent on the affordability of the gear that makes playing possible. Typically, new gadgets demand a premium on the market.
As manufacturing ramps up, and other companies enter the field, prices tend to drop, making it possible for the concept to fulfill its potential.
The current offer encompasses top-of-the-line models, with the best visual and sensory experience, and budget-friendly options that try to stay in tune with the big brands.
Few of the leading VR headsets for online casino gaming include:
● Oculus Quest 2
● HTC VIVE
● HP Reverb G2
● Valve Index LG 360 VR
● LG 360 VR
● Zeiss VR One
The latest figures indicate that sales of VR headsets are rapidly rising, with projected sales of 14 million units for 2022. This is a 35% increase from last year, signaling that online casinos that have embraced the virtual reality format are on solid footing for the future.