With the launch of the new iPhone 7, we were considering which mobile casinos matched up to the new features the phone offers. Something we didn’t mention in our last post was the increased storage, which for mobile gamblers might mean more space to download native casino apps to their handsets. What I want to explore today, then, is whether downloading casino apps is worth the hassle and memory, or whether you’re better off simply always playing through your browser.
What is a Mobile Casino App?
Look, I know some of you will be rolling your eyes at this question, but before I dive straight into weighing up the pros and cons of apps, I thought it might be prudent to establish what I’m talking about when I say ‘mobile casino app’. So to get us on the same page, a casino app is a downloadable application for either a single game, suite of games or whole casino, which you can launch and play on your smartphone or tablet.
The key characteristics of a casino app are:
- You download it to you smartphone or tablet
- They’re usually available on the App Store or Play Store
- The casino offering the app will usually encourage you to download it from their site
- They launch directly from your phone without the need to use the browser
The revolution that came with smartphone and tablet technology was the advent of apps. I’m sure many of you remember the iPhone marketing slogan ‘There’s an app for that’, and that basically encapsulates the technological move away from browser based access to online services, and more towards apps, which theoretically offer more room for special features, can track your account and usage more easily, and can send you notifications.
It might strike you as strange to learn, then, that despite the huge push in the last couple of years to create mobile capabilities for online casinos, the majority still require you to access their sites through your phone’s browser. Why is this? Does this mean casino apps aren’t worth playing, or simply that the industry is being slow to move?
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of mobile casino apps and see whether we can answer some of these questions.
The Benefits of Casino Apps
There’s plenty to be said for downloading your favourite casino or games to you phone.
Run Smoother Than Ever
Ok, so I’m assuming you’ve run a mobile casino on your phone browser before. Now if you have a decent phone and a good internet connection, chances are it looked and felt pretty good, however I’m going to take a shot in the dark and say that at some point you’ve experienced lag, delays, or less than perfect graphics while accessing casinos like this.
The great thing about having downloaded a casino app is that all the information which your phone would have to access through the internet in terms of graphics and gameplay are already stored on your phone, meaning no matter what your connection is like, you’ll always be able to get outstanding graphics, looking just as good as they were intended, teamed with super smooth gameplay.
Uses Less Data
Closely connected to the last point is that mobile casino apps actually require less data to run than browser based casinos. It’s pretty easy to understand why; one the app is downloaded (which I’d advise you do using WIFI, most of the information your phone needs about the casino is already stored in its memory. This means that when you’re out and about, you can gamble for longer, using less data, which in turn should save you money!
Now this one’s a little harder to quantify than the points previously, but is still worth considering. Launching a mobile casino in a browser requires you to either search for said casino, or enter its URL. Chances are after the first time you’ve used it, it’ll be remembered in your history, so easier to find, but that’s still a bit of hassle you could do without.
When the app is downloaded onto your phone, all that’s required to launch it is the single push of a button from your home screen. Moreover, you’ll probably be signed in already on the app, whereas browser based casinos will often log you out for security purposes, meaning yet another step between you and your game.
Now I don’t want to make promises which don’t get lived up to, but there’s quite a few casinos out there which push certain bonuses and promotions exclusively to their app users, and not to browser based users. While this practise might seem a little unfair, it’s an easy way for the casinos which do it (and I stress, not all casinos with apps do) to reward players who download their app.
The Drawbacks of Casino Apps
It’s not all flowers and candy cane when it comes to downloading mobile casino apps. Like with literally everything in the world, there’s some negatives to consider before you download all the gambling apps.
Takes up Space on Your Phone
This one’s pretty much a no brainer. Despite the fact that smartphones are getting bigger in terms of storage capacity all the time, apps too are getting bulkier. Remember that all the sound, graphics and game mechanics require memory, and the higher quality the game or casino, the more room you’ll need to make for it on your phone.
I don’t know about you, but I’m constantly deleting things from my phone to make space for new apps, and it’s up to you to decide whether it’s worth all that memory to keep a gambling app or two on your smartphone or tablet. This one’s pretty much a subjective call.
Uses More Battery
I’m not saying that playing a mobile casino through your phone’s browser doesn’t use up your phone’s battery life – of course it does, and while you’re playing it probably uses more than the app alone. However, you need to remember that apps often stay running when you’re not using them, working away in the background in case you get a notification, or just reading your emails.
Ok, no honest casino would read your emails, but the point still stands. If you’re worried about the longevity of your phone’s battery, you might be better off avoiding the casino app download.
Can Encourage You to Gamble More
This is possibly the most convincing argument against having all your gambling needs at your fingertips. Any gambler will tell you that the easier it is to place a wager, the more likely they are to do it, and when it’s so easy and convenient that it literally only takes the push of a couple of buttons, it can start getting pretty dangerous for those of us who lack total self-control.
If you’re worried about your gambling getting out of hand, or you simply don’t want to have to put up with the temptation, do yourself a favour and don’t download a gambling app.