Augmented reality is exactly as its name suggests: a way to add a sensory input to programmes, or overlay it in a real life setting that enhances the experiences of users and players. AR is similar to a 3D movie experience, only more immersive. It works through specialised eyewear or headgear that produces realistic imagery and sounds, simulating a real world scenario, with casino games being a perfect example.
Today’s AR/VR technology is more advanced than ever before, with technology giants like Google pumping millions into developing new and cost-effective headsets and software. Currently, there are three different forms of AR available: web, kiosk, and mobile. In terms of the iGaming world, mobile AR definitely has the most advantages, being portable, convenient, and having the potential to gain massive popularity among the billions of mobile device users worldwide.
While virtual reality is difficult to integrate into a casino gaming session, experts are positive that AR will see success in the field. Today’s casino players have increasingly turned to online and mobile casinos mainly due to their convenience and portability, but unfortunately, a common bugbear for many is the lack of realism in these online games.
Live Dealer Games Paired With AR Will Revolutionise Casinos
The thrilling atmosphere of land-based casino games is hard to recreate, and possibly the closest developers have come to date is by creating live dealer casino games. Live dealer games use a live feed of a real casino game to put players in a real-time situation in which they can control their wagering and have a complete view of the inner workings of their session.
However, AR could revolutionise the live casino movement even further. The technology allows players to experience their online games in a totally immersive way, by superimposing real dealers and casino gaming tables into the environment in which it is most convenient for them to play.
This way, the many benefits of playing casino games online will still be present, and casinos will also be able to add back the realistic aspect of games that many players have foregone in order to play at a moment’s notice from their desktops and smartphones. Simply put, AR casino games will truly offer the best of both worlds.
Pokémon Go Popularity Proved Players’ Interest In AR
The Pokémon Go game by Niantic was the first true application of AR in modern mobile technology. The game was a smash hit when it was released in July 2016, and its success soon made it clear that there was a massive market for augmented reality games and apps throughout the global market.
The prospect of AR games becoming widespread did – and still does – seem promising, but there is many obstacles to be tackled before AR casinos specifically become commonplace. Companies will need to develop brand new technology, and also try to find affordable AR/VR hardware that the mainstream market will be able to access. However, these technicalities haven’t stopped the AR movement from already beginning to transform the way players interact with their online casino games.
Since as long as casinos have existed, these establishments have ploughed huge amounts of money into creating gaming environments that would entice and entertain their players. The casinos of Las Vegas are as famous for their ambiences as they are for their games, with casinos like The Mirage, The Venetian, and Caesars Palace offering a stunning array of decor to create a visually appealing setting for all ages.
Up until now, online casinos have not been able to do the same, although they have compensated with special promotions, bonuses and competitions for their members. Once AR casino games and technologies are commonplace, online operators may be able to focus more on creating immersive ambiences instead, relying less on bonuses and more on the general experience they offer their players.
Future of iGaming Heading Towards AR
Considering the incredible capabilities of AR technology, its future in the online casino industry certainly looks bright. The foundation of AR allows virtual images and videos to be placed over players’ fields of view, and today’s smartphones and tablets can easily produce the same effects. This means that a massive percentage of mobile casino players already have in their pockets the technology necessary to make AR iGaming a reality.
While AR technology is still in its early stages, there can be no doubt that iGaming is heading in its direction. Augmented reality will make casino games are more entertaining, more immersive and more realistic, and will solve the issue of players being isolated with just the game in front of them – the same objective that live dealer games has attempted to achieve.
The future of online gambling has already begun, and, as far as almost every industry expert is concerned, augmented reality is guaranteed to be its star feature.