Fixed Odds Betting Terminals have been the saviour of many betting shops, for without those four gaming machines in each shop many of them would have been forced to close up many years ago.
The amount of cash generated by FOBT’s does surprise or even shock a lot of people, however being fair and random games they generate as much cash as you would expect from gaming machines offering casino styled games.
You will no doubt have noticed if you have ever stepped foot in a betting shop, that most of those venues are empty of customers betting on horses or greyhounds, whilst the only customers in most betting shops these days are those huddled around and playing the FOBT’s!
In fact, most betting shops only opened in the first place to allow the operators of those shops to increase the number of those gaming machines they could have in towns and cities, for being limited to four the only way they increase their numbers is by opening up more and more shops!
That is why you will often find lots of betting shops often in the same street. But one does have to therefore ask the question will those venues survive without FOBT’s, and the answer is that around 50% of UK betting shops would have to close if they didn’t have Fixed Odds Betting Terminals!
How FOBT’s Work
There is often a lot of confusion in regards to just how FOBT machines work and operate, and with that in mind let me give you a clear and concise overview of how they work and operate.
Frits and foremost the games are completely random, however to be classified as fixed odds machines the outcome of every single game played whether it be roulette, blackjack or the slot machines, must determined by a random number generator which is not physically attached to the machine in the betting shop, but is in another location.
It is of course via a internet type connection each individual machine is linked up to the random number generator, and it is at the point in time the player clicks onto the spin or deal button that the outcome of each game is determined.
Once a player has chosen their stakes and clicks onto the spin or deal button a video display will then be used to display that spin of the slot reels or the roulette wheel and spin in the chosen outcome as determined by the random number generator.
In regards to card games such as Blackjack the cards to be dealt out are determined by the random number generator and are then dealt out as the player makes his or her betting and playing decisions.
As such each game is completely random, and despite what a few disgruntled players may proclaim, the games are not rigged in any way.
What players do need to keep in mind is that each game through their very design has a built in house edge, so players can experience winning and losing streaks due to the randomness of each game, but each game has been designed to lock in a long term profit for the bookmakers.
Risks Associated with FOBT’s
What tends to upset people about FOBT’s is that they are easily accessible, for with often lots of betting shops in most towns and cities, anyone who does wish to have some play time on those machines simply needs to wander into any betting shop.
They are then able to feed banknotes and coins into the machines or can even have credits added to the machines by using their debit cards, which the cashier does over the counter.
The stakes players can play for are £100 per game played, and it is due to the fact that some gamblers cannot help or control themselves when playing such machines that a number of players may experience problems playing them, and may spend more money than they intended doing.
There have been plenty of reports of people attacking the machines and damaging them, or even abusing the staff in the betting shops when they have experienced a losing run, however that is not the fault of the betting shop staff it is the fault of the players not setting limits in regards to their gambling activities.
Whilst some people are calling for those machines to be banned, it is even easier for a gambler to simply open up an online casino account and play from the comfort of their own homes where they can spend way more than £100 every few seconds, and not many people are demanding that online casinos should be banned!