Saying live dealer games have enjoyed huge popularity over the last few years would be a massive understatement. This sector is among the biggest drivers of the industry’s growth, bringing billions in revenue to casino operators. Perhaps more importantly, it has successfully bridged the gap between virtual and terrestrial gambling.
Charged with the luxurious atmosphere of land-based gaming halls, live dealer casinos bring gambling staples like roulette and blackjack straight to the comfort of players’ homes. But what is the advanced technology that makes all of this possible? How live casino gaming works? Let’s figure it out!
Optical character recognition technology
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) is at the heart of every live dealer casino. This technology gained traction at the beginning of the 1990s. It was initially used for the purposes of digitizing newspapers and paper documents. Before OCR, all textual information had to be manually retyped, which, needless to say, was extremely cumbersome, inaccurate, and time-consuming.
OCR made it possible to convert all kinds of analog information, such as imagery, printed and hand-written text, into a digital format. In the context of live casino games, this technology captures everything that occurs in the gaming studio and streams it to players’ desktop or mobile screens.
Live casinos used to deploy special cards that contained either barcodes or minuscule computer chips that relied on the Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. Each card that left the deck or shoe was scanned so that its denomination and suit were translated into digital data. Respectively, this information appeared on players’ screens and was updated in real-time.
However, this approach became outdated, and today many live casinos have abandoned it in favor of OCR. They prefer to use special OCR software and cameras as this method offers higher accuracy, greater convenience, and more efficiency.
The OCR technology works within a short-range and requires sufficient light to accurately identify items and convey information about them. This explains why live dealer studios utilize special lighting on their floors. One example comes from Evolution Gaming’s studio in Latvia.
The software provider initially relied on halogen lighting. However, this approach proved ineffective because the lamps could not keep up with the 24/7 workload of the studio. Evolution Gaming solved the problem by ditching the halogens for a more advanced lighting setup.
It was supplied by Photon Beard, a leading manufacturer of lighting equipment for television studios and movie sets. After comprehensive research, the studio migrated to fluorescent lighting like the Photon Beard Highlight 220 and the Photon Beard Highlight 110 lamp heads.
This inclination toward innovative thinking and ingenuity is the reason why Evolution Gaming powers the live-dealer sections of some of the biggest names in the gambling industry.
Game Control Unit
The Game Control Unit (GCU) is another essential component in the provision of live casino solutions. This technology is used for encoding gaming-related information and providing the live dealers with adequate visual support so that the gameplay is always smooth as butter. The encoding occurs with the assistance of a special sensor or a scanner.
It translates the information about dealt cards and winning numbers on the roulette wheel into a digital format. The software then processes this data and reflects it in the User Interface (UI). The players not only see the winning numbers or played cards but are also automatically notified by the software whether their wagers win or lose.
High-end web cameras
Leading suppliers of live casino solutions like Evolution Gaming implement multiple high-end cameras at each table. This enables them to give players a glimpse of the live-action from different angles.
For example, when a player joins a live roulette table, one camera gives them a wide shot of the dealer who hosts the game, another shows a closeup of the spinning wheel while a third one displays it from different angles.
Some games, like Evolution’s Live Baccarat Squeeze, utilize more than 15 high-resolution cameras so that players can see all the subtle nuances of the gaming action that occurs at the table.
Monitors are also crucial components of live casino gaming. They enable attractive dealers to keep track of the wagers players post and their playing decisions. With the help of the monitor, the dealer can also see who has joined the live-action and at what point in time.
This way, he or she can prompt playing decisions from the seated patrons because players are usually granted limited time to place bets or play out their hands. Additionally, the monitor allows the dealers to expel players who are rude or break the rules from the table.