Almost from the day the first one was launched online casinos have been on the up and up. The opportunity to play whenever is convenient has proved to be irresistible to millions the world over – and many are also putting down the falling revenues at land-based casinos as a by-product of the phenomenon.

The steady growth of people using mobile devices as opposed to PCs to access the internet has further acted to strengthen the position of the online casino as a great way to play.

But while they may have many of the games of a “bricks and mortar” casino including roulette, blackjack and poker what most traditional online versions lack is the atmosphere of the real thing. In fact, in most respects, the experience is more like playing a video game than joining the high rollers.

Ever conscious of the need to enhance the gaming experience, online casinos have increasingly been adding the live option to their offering with very successful results.

So what can you expect from the live casino experience? Well, in a nutshell, it’s as near as you can get to the real casino experience without having to get dressed up and heading out for the night, so if you’re looking to play with real dealers and go face to face on a livestream then trying it out first hand with secure live online casino operators like 888casino will make you fall in love with this modern gambling addition straight away.

At the heart of the experience are the dealers who run their own tables, just like they would in a real casino – and to prove that they are there and are playing in real time there’s usually a chat function with them for that all important banter. So before long most players usually find their favorite dealers and try to head for their games whenever at all possible.

Then there are the games themselves. These are totally realistic so you’ll be able to see the ball being put into motion on the roulette when and the cards being shuffled before they’re dealt out. For many this is a far more reassuring sight than knowing that whether you’ll win or lose depends on the outcomes of the random number generator that a traditional online casino uses.

Instead of this, the live casino uses a very clever piece of equipment called a game control unit. This is a machine that converts the cards that are dealt or the number that comes up onto the roulette wheel into digital information which can then be used for online play.

In most other respects the live casino is just like the online version, for example in the way that you use the controls on your PC or mobile device to place your stakes and to collect your winnings so it really does represent the best of both worlds.

As to future developments, virtual reality is being widely predicted to be the next big thing in making the live casino an even more realistic experience. Potentially this will also make it into an even more sociable activity as it opens up the possibility of “meeting up” with friends online in the virtual casino environment – but without ever having to get your round in either!