Remember the days when our favourite casino brands made their first forays into the digital realm? We're not saying they were bad, but let's face it, things have improved dramatically since then, haven't they?
Back in the day, big name brands and emerging new casino startups pretty much had to make do with what they had, which often meant slow game play, low res graphics and an overall experience which was more akin to playing Solitaire on your Windows 95 desktop than it was to actually saddling up to the Roulette wheel in a Las Vegas Casino.
But oh, how things have changed. As technology continued to evolve, so too did the virtual casino experience. Better graphics, faster loading speeds, an influx of new games, all driven by the latest advancements in modern digital tech all spearheaded a growth that turned the casino online into something which almost perfectly replicated the casino in the real world.
In this day and age, online Poker fans, slot machine aficionados and Roulette spinners alike are no longer faced with two-bit graphics and animated pixel dealers reeling off the same automated catchphrase after each turn of the game. Instead, they've got live interaction with real dealers through video technology, real-time game play in unison with fellow players from across the world, and more of those wonderfully attractive slot games that are the hallmark of any digital gambling environment.
So far, so good, right? But what's next. Has the online casino reached its technological peak? Is this as far as it goes and as good as it's ever going to get forever more?
Indeed, you only have to look around at the new advances in consumer technology that's slowly but surely creeping into our everyday lives. Take the much-lauded Oculus Rift virtual reality headset for example, a device which takes gaming from something of a third-party viewing into a fully-immersive, highly interactive experience.
Though it may be getting all the kudos for the kinds of things it can do for gaming console fans, is it too much a stretch of the imagination to envision the Oculus Rift enhancing the way we visit a casino online? When true virtual reality peripherals become accessible and affordable for everyday consumers, could the casino brands not jump on board and use them to deliver an even more authentic experience?
Just imagine, being able to place on a headset, and instead of clicking buttons to play your favourite game, you simply sit down in your favourite chair, drink in hand, then move around and interact with the game, the dealers and your fellow players just as if you were actually there.
Sure, this may all seem like it's a long way off right now, but you only have to look back at how far things have come in a relatively short space of time to start getting pretty excited about the future of the online casino experience.