For casino operators, floor space is revenue. If a casino game isn’t performing well, it is either replaced or moved to another area. And in most casinos, the slot machine is the biggest money maker for casinos, so it’s no surprise to find them in any casino.

Expansion of Online Gambling and the Effect on CommunitiesAfter all, slots are not as intimidating as table games and have widespread appeal. And players can sit at slot machines for hours without being bumped or interrupted, as they would with table games. But the slots don’t appeal to everyone, so maximizing revenue isn’t as simple as filling the floor with slot machines.

Therefore it’s no surprise casinos are moving towards touch bet screens for other games such as roulette and baccarat. They provide players with more options, although new technology usually requires government approval before use.

Such approval has been granted for Australia’s Canberra casino. Instead of their previously allowed 22 terminals, they are now allowed 50. But as a condition, a live dealer must remain present to supervise.

Touch Bet Terminals in Roulette

The use of the technology in roulette is known as “rapid roulette”. It benefits players because they have their own private place to sit and bet. The payouts of chips is automatic, so the game is not slowed. This means spins are more frequent, more bets are placed, and the casino earns more. However, rapid roulette also favors professional roulette strategy players because they can analyze more spins in less time.

Rapid roulette is generally not threatened by the use of electronic cheating devices such as roulette computers, because bets are closed before the wheel spins.

The expansion is part of a $330 million investment by the Aquis group, which purchased Canberra casino in 2014. Another of the conditions is that the equipment be purchased from local gaming venues such as RSLs. This is to make to expansion more favorable to local gaming venues who have opposed the expansion. Naturally the expansion of Canberra Casino may have a negative impact on the revenue of smaller gaming venues.

Despite the approval for the expansion, opposition remains strong as Aquis is owned by offshore entities. Inevitably, any income of Canberra casino benefits private investors – not the community.

The Effect of Gambling on Communities

When Melbourne’s Crown casino (in Australia) first opened, hopeful gamblers flocked in attempt to make easy money. The thought of paying all debts in a short period would appeal to anyone. The reality is of course the casino almost always win, with the exception being professional advantage players. And soon after the casino culture entered the state of Victoria Australia, there were numerous cases where losing players committed suicide. The premier at the time, who advocated the casino’s license, responded to the suicides by claiming the community often has an adjustment period. Presumably his justification was that the existence of the casino will ultimately do more good than harm, and that the harm is merely temporary.

The Real Cost of Gambling

According to Problem Gambling Australia, 1 in 6 people who play slot machines have a “severe” gambling problem. This is a prominent figure from one government agency, which is in obvious contrast to claims by casino advocates.

The average problem gambler is estimated to lose an average of $21,000 per year on gambling. This is a third of the average Australian wage, without consideration of taxation. And it’s not counting the toll on family. Problem Gambling Australia estimates that problem gambling costs Australians $4.7 billion each year.

Consider that Australia has a population of approximately 20 million people. It is a relatively low population. Now consider the USA which has a population of nearly 330 million people, and you can imagine the effect gambling has on a nation’s community.

In most cases, a large part of casino revenue is injected back into the community through taxation. But the majority goes to private overseas investors.

Gambling For Fun vs Professional Play

There’s no denying gambling is a booming industry online. And comes with it are the many gambling system scams with the promises of easy money. Just about every player knows the odds are against them, without understanding why.

There are a few gambling systems that do work, which are called “advantage play” methods by casino consultants who advise casinos about how to protect revenue. Any player with the intention of “making money” from casinos needs to understand why casinos usually win. In a nutshell, the casino has an edge (the “house edge”) because the payouts are unfair for the odds of winning. A simple example is the European roulette wheel as 37 pockets, but a win for a single number bet pays just 35-1. So the payout is unfair. If it were fair, the payouts would be 36-1 so a win pays 36 units plus your original wager. See roulette odds and payout chart for further explanation.

Expansion of Online Gambling

The Internet is notoriously difficult to regulate. It is made difficult by varying laws between jurisdictions. And with the ability for players to sit at home and bet, casinos don’t need a venue. They don’t need to worry about floor space. The Internet is the perfect platform for gambling. There’s no denying it’s already big business, and it’s going to expand.

To prevent a nation from losing money offshore, some governments have restricted online gambling activity. Most notably, the USA. Although now they’ve opened their first online casino.

Basically the US government isn’t opposed to online gambling. They’re opposed to online gambling with a non-US company because it would mean the country loses revenue.

Inevitably what we’re going to see is a further expansion of online gambling. But for now, it is still a largely unregulated industry with many rogue casinos which routinely refuse payouts. The question is who will it benefit more? The community, or private investors?

Author Bio: Steve – Roulette Wheel Analysis Group

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