Now that mobile casinos have been integrated into most casinos’ product offerings, a handful of providers have risen to early dominance but it’s pretty clear from the mobile casino reviews I’ve come to write up that the market is still in it’s formative stages. That’s not to say some of the games aren’t very good, just that when you look at the casino products so far released on mobile, there is still some way to go before a “feature rich” experience such as that found in the PC casinos can be matched on iPhones, iPads and Android devices.
This is in no small part down to the restrictive screen sizes. Playing slots in particular on a 4″ mobile phone screen is not a pastime that I’ll be partaking of right now. But put those games on a tablet and it’s a lot more satisfying but it still falls a little short of the high resolution of my iMac or Acer laptop. The more traditional casino games like Roulette and Blackjack tend to fare a little better on both phone and tablet in my opinion but there is still the issue of time management – is it worth logging in when you are on the move to play a game that requires your attention and for an extended period?
This article goes on examine the current state (October 2013) of mobile casino software by provider with a brief overview of what to expect, what’s missing and which is probably leading the way. You will find that pretty much all of my favourite mobile casinos use one of these softwares.
Leading The Pack
It’s no surprise to find that the online casino software companies leading the charge in mobile are the same group of vendors who have become dominant in online casino play, although there are a couple lagging behind. While Microgaming and Playtech along with Net Entertainment have all built decent mobile platforms while IGT have launched some games and the likes of Aristocrat, Novomatic and WMS are still to really get involved in the mobile scene.
This is set to change soon mind you. I have already seen the Book Of Ra slot from Novomatic in mobile form – just not for real money play yet – and I know for a fact that WMS are preparing a mobile version of the popular Jackpot Party casino (reviewed here) for customers imminently. It’s only a matter of time before most of the online versions of popular land-based games are available in mobile format.
As previously mentioned, Blackjack and Roulette are staple offerings on every mobile platform and it’s hard to really differentiate the experience on Playtech, Microgaming or any other platform. The choice of variants is still very small when compared to the exhaustive PC and Flash products available but as I say, mobile is still in it’s infancy. Start with the basics as they say: European Roulette and Basic Blackjack are mobile already while the more niche variants will invariably follow at some stage.
As for mobile slots, again the choice is a little limited but it’s visibly growing month on month. The most comprehensive mobile casinos such as BetVictor Mobile have around 30 games as I write and most mobile casinos have at least 10 games. Even over the past 2 months it’s noticeable how these offerings are growing with Microgaming alone adding 6 more of their popular titles to it’s “GO” mobile casino product (see the 32Red mobile casino review or the comprehensive and regularly updated list of mobile slot games now available).
Of the leading mobile platforms, I’d say that Microgaming’s is the most sleek. It looks as good as the PC version even if the restrictions of HTML programming do mean that only one sound can play at any given time. Likewise, Playtech’s mobile casino software (see either the Paddy Power mobile casino review or my Bet365 review) looks the part, uses the same technology and throws in some innovation with the ability to spin the reels or interact with the games by swiping. While this sounds good and is initially fun, trust me when I say your finger gets a bit tired after a while and a button becomes more alluring!
The software that seems to be making the most PR stir is Net Ent’s “Touch” mobile system (in use at the aforementioned BetVictor and also on Stan James Mobile Casino along with others). I have to be honest here and say that while the mobile versions of their games do indeed look very slick, I’ve never really found their slots that “addictive” for want of a better word. But if you are a fan then I think the mobile versions will appeal even if right now the choice is small.
And that for now is really the kicker – while the games look good across the board (with the exception of IGT’s rather dated looking mobile games, some of which don’t even have sound!) – the biggest issue right now is lack of choice. There is no real reason to play the mobile casinos unless you prefer playing with an iPad or tablet as opposed to a laptop or PC or you are on the move – the essence of mobile I know but how often are you on the move long enough to play casino games? Only you will know.
For me, I am happy to kick back with a tablet and play these games but until the choice is a lot greater, for now I tend to use a laptop more.