So what’s the standard game you first think about when you think of online gambling – or just any old gambling? The slot machine?
The Birth of the Slot
Easily the most popular approach to gambling, the slot machine is the most common in all casinos, in real space or online, these days. And this has been the case for a long time. In fact, history reveals that the first reeled slot machine came into being in 1887. It was known as the Liberty Bell and it was invented in the United States by a man called Charles Fey. With three reels and five symbols – the bell, the heart, the spade, the diamond and the horse shoe – it was destined to take anything that anyone was thinking about gambling and turn it around, summarily.
Competition for Liberty Bell
In 1891, a company by the name of Sittman and Pitt invented a mechanical take on the game of poker. The machine featured 50 playing cards stuck onto five drums which were spun with a handle, effectively presenting the player with a ‘hand of cards’. Similar in principle to the Liberty Bell, Sittman and Pitt’s machine also required in the insertion of a coin to let the games begin, and the handle that spun it all earned the machine the moniker “one-armed bandit”.
Prototypes and Winnings
The Liberty Bell remained the prototype, however, as it was also able to dispense a player’s winnings. And the mechanical design, physical appearance and functionality of it were copied for bars and saloons all over the country, becoming more sophisticated over the years.
Money Honey Turns the Gambling World Around
In 1963, the slot machine saw another breakthrough with a machine called the Money Honey. Made by a company called Bally Manufacturing, this gadget brought electronics into the swing of things and the hefty handle was replaced by a button. And then in terms of design, it was a leap and a hop into video and digital technology, to say nothing of the Internet.