There are several theories and myths about the nature of slot machines and whether a person can actually make a profit from them. With the growing awareness of gambling addiction, the slot machine is getting a bad name. The actual fact is that in January 2009 a report was released by the Ontario Problem Gambling Research Centre stating that problem gamblers comprise a mere 3.2% of the whole gambling population in Canada. In August 2010, Stats Canada released its finding that the total Canadian gambling revenue was estimated at $13.75 billion in 2009. When one considers the total Canadian revenue from gambling, the 3.2% of problem gamblers is relatively small in comparison to the spending as a whole.
Slots have been around since 1891 where the best poker hand was rewarded with beer and cigars. The first conception of this gambling phenomena was introduced in Brooklyn, New York by two men, Sittman and Pitt. Shortly after in 1895 the infamous Charles Fey developed the first commercial machine which became coined “The One Arm Bandit”. The understanding behind the coined phrase was due to the fact that Fey’s machine had three reels and five symbols with the largest jackpot paying out ten nickels. Fey’s creation provided for 1000 number combinations before a jackpot combination was struck. This of course was difficult to achieve, thus players often lost a lot of money trying to get the combination. From the difficulty in actually getting a jackpot the public called the machine a Bandit for stealing their money. Fey’s creation became so popular he could not keep up with public demand. By 1964 the first fully electronic slot machine was created and called the Money Honey. slot
Slots have been a favorite of many gamblers throughout history, although slot machines were also viewed as the poor man’s gamble in many bars across North America. Slot machines have risen in popularity since the creation of Microgaming and Random Number Generation Technology (RNG). RNG predicts the next symbols to appear on the slot machine window, dictating the amount of money to be won, rather than weights that can be placed on any given reel in favor of the casino, rather than the player. RNG has evened the playing field for the player to actually win money and spend less. The casino still reaps a profitable sum over time as new players put their money in and then leave to go to another machine.
Slot machines today are known to have payout percentages of 80 – 98% and are pre-programmed with Microgaming for their payout rates. Casinos are able to change the payout rate of their machines; however most choose not to due to the complex task and large expense of having a chip replaced. Most slot machines with wagering amounts of a penny to a quarter have lower payout rates than one dollar and higher machines. It is noted that five dollar machines typically have a payout rate of 98%.
Is it possible to win at slot machines today with the governing combination being chip technology? Absolutely! One needs to understand the RNG technology and how it is employed in slot machines. Using simple tips and strategies, it is very possible to build a slow but steady income stream from slot machines. A mistake that many slot players make is continuing to put large sums of money into a slot with the hope of a large jackpot. If a player is using low risk betting strategies and understands RNG, the chances of building a substantial and consistent income stream is far more possible than the one-off large jackpot.