The past fifteen years have seen the rise of two significant global industries: online gambling and mobile computing. The pair are inextricably linked of course, each feeding off the other's success as the technology involved on both sides becomes ever more sophisticated.
The leader in the mobile computing space is undoubtedly Apple. No other company has innovated as regularly or spectacularly within that sphere over the last two decades and very few companies on earth can match their revenues.
The iPhone is clearly the flagship of their product range and there are few platforms more perfect for using to enjoy the online casino experience. Our aim in this article is to make sure you're getting the most out of your iPhone when looking for table-based online gambling action.
We'll take a detailed look at what you need to know about iPhone online casinos: the hardware and software requirements you should consider, some background on the industry itself and an overview of the type of casinos to think about favouring with your business.
What To Look For In Your iPhone Online Casino?
Before we get technical, let's start with the commercial and services side of the equation and have a look at what you should be expecting from your iPhone online casino.
The first area to concentrate on is the software and app options on offer. The obvious initial item to get clarity on is whether the casino actually offers a dedicated iOS app for players or not.
The vast majority of casinos will almost certainly have an iOS app available these days – simply look for the App Store icon prominently displayed somewhere towards the bottom of the homepage – but it's always best to be sure before signing up.
The next stage is a precautionary one. Check that there are no problems on the casino website itself when viewing it on your iPhone. Most casino sites should be optimised for display on mobile devices. If you notice that the iPhone casino site in question is awkward or difficult to navigate on your iPhone, it does not bode well for future use.
Once you're happy with the site's overall performance on your phone, move on to the casino app or apps on offer. The iPhone is the most fully featured, powerful mobile device on the market – particularly with the new A8 chip that comes as standard from the iPhone 6 up – so there's no excuse for online casinos not to provide a cutting-edge, fully immersive casino experience in their apps. Performance should be smooth throughout and the gameplay compelling.
It's also worth checking how regularly the app has been updated over the last twelve months. You want to see evidence that the casino is committed to regular releases to take advantage of the latest software upgrades, for example the launch of iOS 8 in late 2104. Apple tends to stick to a regular release cycle and each upgrade brings major improvements so it's important your casino is keeping up to speed.
Once you're satisfied that the software is up to scratch, it's time to turn your attention to the casino itself. After all, even the best software and hardware in the world can't fully compensate for a less than satisfactory experience on the account level.
When trying to select between competing iPhone online casinos, look for the following positive indicators to help narrow your search:
A good track record: You want to be dealing with an established business that has obvious signs of having operated for a few years. A verifiable offline postal address is a must.
A satisfied player pool: Successful online casinos keep large crowds of happy players entertained and eager to come back for more. Check around on dedicated casino forums and review sites and make sure the overall feedback is positive.
A full range of funding options: Deposit and withdrawal options should be clearly listed and explained and you should be able to choose between Paypal, credit cards such as Visa or Mastercard and other convenient funding options.
On the negative side of things, any or all of the following signs should make you think twice about opening an account:
Shoddy software or site appearance: If the site cannot manage its online presence, it's unlikely they're going to do any better with your money.
Onerous fees or conditions: Extra "processing" or "administrative" fees on your account or poorly explained terms and conditions should set alarm bells ringing.
Lack of customer service options: You should be able to see options for telephone, email and chat support clearly listed for any reputable online casino. If you don't, move on.
Why Online Casinos Have To Cater For iPhone/Mobile
Before we get into the specifics of the iPhone, let's briefly cover why online casinos are having to concentrate more and more of their resources on the mobile market in general and the iPhone in particular.
When it comes to the question of whether the shift to hand-held computing has really taken place, the jury is very much in. We are living in a mobile-first world. The number of devices in operation has sky-rocketed over the last decade and the percentage of mobile visitors to websites is fast approaching a tipping point.
That's before you even consider the app revolution that has truly revolutionised people's time and attention, particularly when it comes to online gaming. By taking advantage of the huge increases in native device computing power, casino app makers are able to offer truly immersive experiences for gamblers on the move.
Of course casinos have long been at the forefront of technological change both offline and online. They know precisely how important it is to stay ahead of the curve. They also know that iPhone users typically represent the upper end of most markets and are disproportionately more likely to spend online compared to owners of other devices. As an iPhone owner, you are a very desirable customer from the point of view of a casino or any other online business.
A final point to consider is the incredibly competitive nature of the casino market itself. The number of new game players has increased substantially thanks to mobile but so has the number of casino offerings competing for their business.
Put all those factors together and it's not hard to see why casinos need to devote a huge amount of their resources to staying on top of the mobile market and attracting iPhone users in particular.
What You Need To Know About Your iPhone
Ok, we've covered some background on the online casino landscape generally and what to look for in your provider but what about the device in your hands? What's required there?
It's hard to put an absolutely definitive minimum set of requirements down as each site may cater for slightly different users but the following are good general guidelines to keep in mind:
Hardware iPhone requirements: Casinos will typically support the last two major releases of the iPhone. Fall any further behind the release cycle and your device may not quite be capable of using the latest apps.
Software iPhone requirements: Similar to the hardware requirements, you'll want to stay within two major releases of the latest version of the operating system. At the time of writing, with iOS 8 relatively recently released, users on iOS 7 and 8 will have no problems using the latest online casino apps but those still using iOS 6 are likely to run into difficulties.
Installing the actual casino apps on your iPhone should be no different than installing any other app. Simply follow the App Store link from the casino site in question and proceed as normal.
One point to note is to be sure that you're installing apps only from the official Apple App Store and not directly from third-party developers. App Store downloads have to pass a series of usability, functionality and security screenings that externally downloaded apps do not.
What Makes The Iphone Perfect For Online Casinos?
The launch of the iPhone changed the entire nature of mobile computing. Ever since Steve Jobs' famous initial demo, the pace of further development has been relentless and what ships as the base model now is light years ahead of what was possible even eight short years ago.
Each generation has seen significant further improvements in power and functionality and the current iteration of the device is a near perfect mobile gambling platform Let's quickly review some reasons why:
Portability: Each release has seen the iPhone get thinner and easier to handle. The decrease in weight and bulkiness has also been accompanied by the recent introduction of a wider range of form factors to accomodate different users.
Interface: With the big leap from iOS 6 to 7 and the further refinements introduced in iOS 8, Apple has well and truly regained its user interface crown. Very few platforms come close to the smoothness and usability of Apple's current offering.
Graphics and processing power: The new A8 processor is built for speed and performance with over two billion transistors and claimed graphics increases of up to 50%. Throw in high-resolution displays and a new motion chip and the iPhone is at the front of the pack.
Other Options For Mobile Gambling
The iPhone isn't the only mobile option out there of course and online casino providers are just as keen to attract users across a range of other platforms. Let's look at some of the other leading contenders.
iPad: Increased processing power and screen real estate allied to the many benefits of the iOS platform make the iPad a great choice for online casino games.
Android: Thanks to Google's open-source Android play, non-Apple users needn't feel left out. Android is supported across a truly impressive range of devices and device sizes from manufacturers around the the world. The majority of online casinos will also usually provide an Android version of their app to be downloaded from the Play Store.
Hopefully this article has helped you narrow down your choices when it comes to finding an online iPhone casino.
With the latest model from Apple in your hands, you're in a great position to make the most of the full range of app and account options that online casinos can offer. Or even use it to manage investment options. Insist on the best in your search for the right iPhone online casino provider and best of luck at the tables!