If you've ever caught fellow bus or train passengers playing seemingly mindless games on their mobile, they're probably spinning their luck around on real money mobile games. Remote gambling or mobile gambling is legal in the UK – any UK resident (permanent citizen or not) above 18 years of age can play at the mobile casinos (and betting sites) that have the licences to operate in the UK. I might be tipping you off about how you can earn few extra bucks by choosing to play at a real money site rather than buying extra beer for your weekend merriment!
Even if you are a seasoned mobile casino player, you'll take away a good deal from this series of articles. In Part 1, we take a look at the core components of the network. In Parts 2 and 3, we'll talk about the value added services, and predict the future trend of this industry.
Core Components of a Regular Remote Gambling Market
Remote gambling is the activity of gambling on a remote device that is not physically wired to the main server or platform that hosts the games. Mobile casinos and desktop-based (online) casinos comprise the remote gambling network, ie. you can play on these sites using a stable internet connection on a mobile phone, tablet or a PC / laptop. Check out the regulations on remote gambling in the UK here.
Remote gambling activities cannot function without the below key components, which we have explained below.
You are the end consumer. As players, you register and gamble on various mobile casinos by using the mobile banking options available on the site. In this context, “to gamble” means to deposit real money on a credible website, to play simple games by placing bets or wagers, and to withdraw your winnings.
2. Mobile Casinos
These casinos hold remote gambling licences to host real money games on their server. They host games from a licensed and Random Number Generator (RNG) tested game makers or suppliers. As a player, you must make sure you're playing on safe and tested mobile casinos, and choose ones that suit your budget and interests the most. We've been reviewing important UK mobile casinos here, in case you want to take a quick look.
3. Game makers
These guys design and make the real money mobile game software or product, and sell them directly to the mobile casinos or to a bigger “casino operator” (who then maintains their games on multiple casinos). We'll talk about the casino operators and other service providers in the next section.
As a player, you'll never interact with these folks directly. However, paying attention to whose products you're playing often make you a smarter player, because it can help you strategise whose games are worth your time and money. We're building a comprehensive section on all UK mobile gaming software providers, so make sure you check back a couple of times in a month.
4. Licensing bodies
They issue licences to tested and audited mobile casinos, game makers and casino operators. These bodies impose legal restrictions on the operations of the above entities, and collect taxes. You might have visited Isle of Man or heard about the tiny island, Malta located between Italy and Tunisia. It might be rather shocking for some to know that a couple of these tiny (read, seemingly inconsequential) islands are some of the biggest treasure boxes in the world — every UK and Europe mobile casino pays about hundreds of thousands of pounds each year in the form of licensing fees and taxes!
To see which casinos are licensed where, and how to lodge your complaints, check our useful article on mobile casino complaints.
5. Regulatory bodies
They perform initial and periodic audits on the game software performance, payout frequencies, and RNG algorithms to make sure the games are safe and fair. They inform the licensing bodies of any discrepancies. They also investigate player complaints, and in some cases settle gambling disputes between players and mobile casinos. In some cases, the licensing bodies often also act as regulatory bodies. We've covered a couple of these in our Regulations section.
6. Banks / Payment Processing Systems
Efficient e-commerce platforms are integrated with the core gaming platform provided by the casinos. It might surprise you that you have a lot more banking options with mobile gambling sites than your regular online shopping sites, and some of these are so easy that you can deposit or withdraw in a blink!
These days, moneybookers, pre-paid card companies, and even your phone network operators are making their e-commerce services available to mobile casino players. Does your mobile network provider have a scheme with Tesco, in which they let you pay them at the end of the month for your shopping, along with your phone bill charges? Tsk tsk, no! This kind of service is only available at the mobile casinos! Check our phone bill deposits section for more information.
There you go! As a player, you probably never thought about how these components worked in unison. You never would have imagined that there is a tremendous untapped potential in the mobile gambling market, which we are about to uncover in the next article in this series. For those of you who have not gambled before, did you know another key fact? In the UK, currently you don't pay taxes on your gambling winnings! These are sufficient reasons for us to think that this market is here to stay and boom exponentially in the next 10 years!
In this section, you have:
- Understood what remote gambling means
- Figured out who's who (the core components) of the mobile gambling network
- Looked at the relationship between the core components
- Got key facts like the UK gambling licences / regulations may be processed from outside the UK!
- Realised that e-commerce websites are showing a keen interest in participating in the mobile gambling network
In Part 2, we'll look at the allied components which are now a major part of UK's mobile gambling network.