Looking Ahead: The Biggest Innovations to Look Out for in Online Poker this Year

3 weeks ago
Looking Ahead: The Biggest Innovations to Look Out for in Online Poker this Year
15:18
05 Jan

Despite all the madness that has taken place in the world in 2020, with the full impact of this year’s events not yet known, certain industries have managed to successfully respond to the changing market conditions brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Indeed, while some industries have been brought to their knees by the economic downturn caused by the first and second waves of the pandemic, others have posted significant increases in their revenues.

The casino industry, in particular, has seen significant increases in the numbers of new users signing up to their platforms, with some of the best poker sites such as bestonlinecasino.com reporting record-breaking figures. 

In many respects, the COVID-19 pandemic presented the perfect conditions for online casinos. With so many of us stuck at home for weeks or months at a time, we flocked to the internet trying to find new and creative ways of passing the time and keeping in touch with friends and family members. In this context, online casinos are able to provide the perfect environment to do both.

As an industry that has always lived on the cutting edge when it comes to embracing new technologies, the casino industry looks well positioned to take advantage of the next big steps in digital technology. But what are the most important technological innovations to look out for in the new year, and how will they affect the online casino and poker scene?


Cryptocurrencies

Although cryptocurrencies have been supported by online casinos for many years now – in fact, online casinos were some of the earliest adopters of cryptocurrencies – public interest in cryptocurrencies has waned somewhat in recent years as crypto prices experienced a long depression. After experiencing meteoric price growth in 2017 and 2018, the prices of cryptocurrencies, particularly bitcoin, plummeted for the majority of 2018. In the months and years following this price crash, the value of cryptocurrencies fluctuated a huge amount as public interest lessened. 

Despite this, there was a considerable amount of development work going on behind the scenes. The result is that the underlying technology behind the major cryptocurrencies has seen some major advances. With that said, casino game developers have already begun planning how they can integrate this new wave of cryptocurrency technology into their products, with online casino platforms showing a similar interest. 

For this reason, as 2020 comes to a close and with 2021 appearing on the horizon, we look set to see an even greater level of support for cryptocurrencies among the major online casino platforms. And with prices of bitcoin, Ethereum and other major cryptocurrencies beginning to rise again, this is all the more likely.


Cybersecurity and customer safety

Although security and customer safety are arguably always at the top of the list when it comes to predicting the most important industry developments on the horizon, 2021 looks set to be a particularly important year, even when compared to previous years. Although they didn’t get reported on with the same attention as they previously had, there were a number of high-profile cyber-attacks and security breaches in the online casino industry this year. Interestingly, the rise in cybersecurity breaches is directly linked to the growth in popularity of online casinos this year, with many online casinos reporting record-breaking numbers of new users signing up to their platforms. With more of us than ever stuck at home looking for a new hobby to pick up, millions across the world flocked to online casinos for the first time

But with an increase in the volume of new users signing up to platforms for the first time, there is always a risk that there may be some security breaches as a result. For this reason, several prominent online casinos have reported plans to invest significantly in their online security frameworks as a way of managing this influx of new players. And although the forms these attacks on online casinos take stay relatively the same – which includes SQL injections, account breaches, scraping and DDoS attacks – the tools that the casinos are willing to deploy to combat them are constantly changing. 

Taking all of this into account, it looks likely that online casinos will continue to invest in highly advanced cybersecurity systems as a way of keeping their clients safe online. Blockchain and other cryptocurrency technologies will prove particularly important, as they have been successfully used in the past to secure the sensitive personal data of online casino users.


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Writer and semi-retired poker pro from Edinburgh (UK).Read more

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