There are a huge number of companies who specialize in developing software for online casinos. The experience at an online casino will depend on who is providing the games. The quality of the developer can determine if a game is going to be fun and exciting to play. It can also determine fairness, as reputable companies will maintain fair and transparent practices.
Here, we will thoroughly review and discuss the top casino software developers including Microgaming, PlayTech, NetEnt and Realtime Gaming. Some of the best online casinos in the world use these companies for their eGaming software needs.
What are Online Casino Software Providers? What role do they play?
As the internet boomed in the late 1990s, many establishments began to look into establishing an online presence. Online casinos emerged as a great solution for people who wanted to experience the thrill of gambling but could not travel to a physical location.
Now, there are hundreds of online casinos from all over the world. Do they all develop their own casino games? No. Instead, each of them licenses their games from a number of companies who specialize in developing games for online casinos.
In addition to developing games, casino software developers also determine prize pools. They take a cut of the online casino’s earnings, and in return provide the casino with both the games and the money the players can win through those games.
Take progressive jackpot slots, for instance. Would it be possible for every other online casino to pay out a jackpot worth 3 million US Dollars? Most online casinos don’t keep anywhere near that amount of money. Instead, if a player wins the jackpot, the money will come from the slot providers. While it puts the burden of payment on the online casino providers, they usually get their income from dozens of different casinos together.
The Best Casino Software Developers
The casino software business can be fairly lucrative. There are a large number of competing online casino providers on the market, and an online casino usually has a lot of freedom to choose which one. Some casinos will even have games from multiple providers on their website.
Some of the common names in casino software development are : Microgaming, RabCat, NYX Gaming Group, NetEnt, Playtech, Red Tiger, Pragmatic Play, Evolution Gaming, Realtime Gaming, Quickspin, Betsoft Gaming, and many more.
These companies cover a broad range of factors, including the overall experience, game quality, and a number of games. For instance, NetEnt was founded in 1996. BetSoft Gaming was founded in 1999. Microgaming is older than both of these, having been active since 1994. This makes Microgaming one of the oldest online casino providers around.
On the other end of the scale, casinos like Red Tiger and Pragmatic Play were only established in 2014 and 2015 respectively. Even though they are not quite “the best” yet, they have made an impact on the scene despite their newness.
Large Pay Outs and High Return-to-Player
A lot of people play at online casinos to make some money. A high payout ensures that players get back most of the money they spend, and maybe some more. Others would like to play for fun, but don’t have much money to work with. Whatever game they play, whether slot machines or table games, require money to start off with.
As a hobby, gambling can either be very lucrative or very expensive. For example, a game may have 95% RTP (Return to Player). This would mean that after averaging the wins and losses over a large number of games, players get back 95% of the original amount they put in. This is particularly important when looking at slot game providers since people win and lose at slots very quickly.
Fortunately, there are lists available online that display the RTP of each game from major slot providers such as NetEnt, Microgaming or Realtime Gaming. NetEnt’s RTP generally ranges from 93 to 98%. Microgaming and Realtime Gaming both have an average RTP of 96.5%. These numbers are very high and contribute to making these companies top tier slot game providers.
Transparency and Fairness
As much as it is disliked, games and cheating go hand in hand. When games are being played, there will almost certainly be some unscrupulous people trying to cheat their way to a win. It’s no different with online casino games. For instance, some games may be rigged to have a lower RTP than is written. Other games would have a random number generator that specifically avoids certain values. This type of cheating is common in slot and roulette games.
Fortunately, there are international organizations such as Technical Systems Testing (TST) and eCommerce and Online Gaming Regulation Authority (eCOGRA). Their purpose is to test online casino software. They will test a casino software developer’s games by running it thousands or millions of times. If the results of these tests are similar to what the casino advertises, the game is fair and working as advertised. They will certify the game to be fair and unbiased.
Additionally, online casinos must pass minimum standards for security and transparency before they can get an online gaming license. Players at online casinos should check for both licensing and certification.
Ease of Play and Multiple Platforms
It doesn’t matter how many games a software provider has if those games are too limited. People want to be able to play games on their phones as well as PCs. In 2019, mobile phones are essentially computers with a smaller screen. People will use phones to alleviate their boredom in many situations. Waiting for the bus? Sitting at the back of the train? In either case, if they’re bored, they can take out their phones and make a few quick spins. So, it’s essential for online casino providers to provide support for playing their games on the phone.
Our Recommendations for the Top Online Casino Software Providers
Keeping the criteria mentioned above in mind, we recommend five online casinos: Microgaming, PlayTech, NetEnt, Realtime Gaming and Thunderkick.
Microgaming is the oldest of these four. Started in 1994, they were the first ever online casino providers. They also developed a mobile gaming platform as early as 2004. They’re dedicated to pushing the boundaries of the online casino gaming scene at all times. As they’ve been operational for more than 25 years, they’ve built up a library of over 850 games. All their games are of a very high standard, and they hold the world record for the largest online jackpot.
NetEnt is also another veteran in the scene, established only a couple years after Microgaming, in 1996. They have a reputation for one of the best and widest libraries of online slot games. They also have a great number of live and jackpot games, totaling over 200. They are the go-to online slot game providers.
Realtime Gaming has been active since 1998. They’re known for developing some of the most realistic games around. In addition to a large library of over 200 games, their Live Casino games are some of the best in the industry.
PlayTech is the newest of the previous four, but still has nearly 20 years of experience. Established in 1999, they have grown to one of the best multi-platform game providers. In addition to having over 600 casino games, they offer various sports and lottery betting options.
Thunderkick is the new kid on the block that is making all the right moves. Founded in 2012, this Swedish software provider is betting on innovation with a careful selection of a little more than 20 games of high quality. Proof of their success, their games are featured on more than 50 accredited casinos, in less than a decade.
No matter which one of these is picked, they all guarantee some of the best casino software around.