iGaming, or real money gaming, is one of the most exciting digital sectors to have emerged in the 21st century. The sector encompasses all wagering and betting activities conducted in the digital realm, including games like slots, roulette and poker and remote and mobile sports betting. Even games like Bingo, Rummy and some fantasy sports pursuits are classed as iGaming activities, as are online lotteries and competitions.
While, in its earliest formats, iGaming has been around since the beginning of online gaming, the development of advanced technologies since the 2010s has ensured the growth of this highly innovative sector. Online casinos, poker platforms, and sports betting operators alike have all soared in popularity across the globe. Current estimates indicate that the real money gaming market to be worth approximately $103 billion by 2025, a figure that’s undoubtedly been boosted by the expansion of iGaming across several US states since 2019.
As with other leading gaming segments, iGaming attracts its fair share of players who are looking to seriously improve their skills. In that respect, several iGaming verticals are now seen as being akin to eSports, since competitive video gaming and such verticals offer the potential to develop a professional gaming career. Online poker, for instance, is a vertical saturated with tournaments, cash games, and even virtual reality experiences, making it a pursuit that players can engage with at an elite professional level as well as an amateur one.
Naturally, in response to this growing demand, there are now a wealth of digital tools and resources that can aid budding punters or casino pros in their quest to conquer their pastimes of choice. When digital satellite tournaments provide the chance to compete at globally renowned tournaments like the World Series of Poker, for instance, gamers are seeking effective tools and resources that will help them play at their best.
If you’re looking to improve your game, keep reading for the lowdown on the best digital resources for iGaming. We can’t guarantee that you’ll get a coveted seat at the table at the main event of the WSOP or that you’ll be able to pick the next decade’s worth of Kentucky Derby winners, but the following resources can increase your knowledge and improve your skillset.
Due to the nature of iGaming being a real money activity, responsible gaming is paramount, regardless if you’re a recreational gamer playing once or twice a month or a veteran with hundreds of tournaments under your belt. The golden rule of any iGaming activity is to never wager more than you can afford to lose, and adhering to responsible gaming practices when needed can help you stick to it.
Most digital operators, including reputable brands like 888 and Unibet, integrate RG tools into their existing platforms, which you’ll be able to engage with at any point on their gaming journey. As a minimum, you should expect licensed gaming websites to include the following:
- Daily, weekly or monthly Deposit Limits
- Time Limits
- Loss Limits
- Player-specified Time Outs
What’s one of the most effective ways to improve as a casino or poker player? To get tips and advice directly from the experts. Back in the analogue days of brick-and-mortar casino gaming or trips to the high street bookies, you’d need to do a lot of digging to get those pearls of wisdom direct from the horse’s mouth – pardon the pun! Here in the digital age, however, it’s a lot easier to get those industry insights by subscribing to gambling news websites and platforms.
Take the PokerNews website, for instance. This well-respected media outlet features regular interviews with top players as well as countless resources covering everything from choosing a game to advanced strategies. It’s not just for poker players, either, as the site regularly publishes content related to casino gaming, including easy-to-implement roulette, blackjack and slots tips, alongside general guides to topics like odds and wagers.
There are some who might say that playing online poker or gambling games is a solo activity. While it’s true that most of the games you’ll come across on legitimate platforms are designed with single players in mind, that doesn’t mean iGaming doesn’t have the same focus on community and socialisation as playing in a brick-and-mortar casino. In fact, iGaming communities are some of the strongest around, and there’s a vast global network of players out there with a minefield of resources to share.
Whether you’re a novice or an advanced gamer, community forums are a great way to learn more about your favourite games and discuss the nitty-gritty of life on the felt. You can use them simply as a resource to conduct research into a new vertical or perhaps get advice on an area of your game that you’re struggling with. Furthermore, you could even make new friends to play online with.
The number of forums that are currently available can be a tad overwhelming, so go with the ones that are already well-established. 2+2, for example, is widely considered to be one of the best community forums dedicated to the game of poker, with members offering genuinely helpful strategies for improvement. Similarly, Reddit has numerous subreddits dedicated to iGaming knowledge.
The cutting-edge nature of the iGaming industry means that it’s one that’s continuously advancing and developing. Furthermore, as we’ve seen taking place throughout North America over the past 36 months, countries can go through shifts and changes when it comes to real money gaming legislation and regulations. The best way to keep on top of these developments is to consult the gaming commissions of your country of residence.
Gaming commissions are independent bodies that govern every aspect of real money gaming within their jurisdictions. This includes things like setting stringent conditions that all operators need to adhere to in order to be granted a gaming license, overseeing gaming control and producing reports and statistics. Many bodies also work with government and economic organisations to run gaming initiatives like responsible gaming.
The UKGC, Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), Nevada Gaming Control Board, New Jersey Casino Control Commission and Gibraltar Licensing Authority are all leading authorities on real money gaming regulation and licensing, and their websites should be your first port of call for in-depth research.