As the name suggests, download slots or download casinos require the software to be downloaded and installed on the players' hard drives. When online casinos were launched in the mid 1990s, this was the only technology workable. At that time the speed of Internet transmission was very low and therefore it was essential that the slots games be stored on the same computer that was used for wagering. Otherwise the reels would freeze or jerk while spinning. Even though no download slots are now available, most online casinos continue to offers download slots. Download slots are compatible only with Windows operating system.
What are Download Slots / Casinos?
Online casinos make use of software that contains a random number generator. This random number generator decides the outcome of the casino games, for example which symbols will appear on the reels when they stop spinning. The larger software picks up the output from the random number generator and converts it into an audio visual display. This software is stored on the server of the online casinos. Download casinos require that this software is downloaded and installed on the players' hard drive as well. The software package contains the software for the slots games as well and these also get downloaded and installed on the players' hard drives. Each online casino downloaded by a player will have a separate folder in the hard drive. Each download slot will have a separate folder within that folder.
Players still need to be connected to the online casino in order to wager on download slots. This is because the players' account information is stored on the server of the online casino. When the player makes a wager his account balance has to be instantly decreased. If at the end of a spin the player receives a payout then his account balance has to be instantly increased.
How Download Slots Works
Players have to connect to the online casino web site and click the Download button to start the download process. Once the download is complete players can click on the casino icon to start the installation. While this is in progress players can register at the online casino and indicate their language and currency preferences. A smaller number of the best online slots get downloaded and installed immediately and these are available for wagering right away. Players have to connect to the online casino, log in and choose the downloaded slots game from the slots menu.
The other slots games usually download in the background in a predetermined sequence while the player is wagering on the downloaded slots. In case the player wants to wager on a slots machine that has not been downloaded, he can download that out of turn. This usually will take a few minutes, the exact time depending on the speed of the Internet connection.
Benefits of Playing Download Slots
In download slots since the software is installed on the player's computer there is minimal transfer of information between the player's computer and the online casino's server. Therefore the game play is more stable. The likelihood of reels freezing or jerking or the player being cut off from the casino is low, even if Internet connection speeds are not very high. The no download casinos require much faster Internet connections. Since online casinos historically began with download casinos there is a much larger portfolio of slots games available in download casinos. The disadvantage is that download slots can consume considerable hard drive space.
General Requirements to Play Download Slots
The most important requirement to play download slots is that they are compatible only with Windows operating system. Therefore Mac and Linux users cannot generally access download slots.
Most home computers and laptops manufactured in the last five years would be suitable for playing download slots. The specific requirements vary with software providers, depending on the richness of graphics and special effects. The important recommended requirements for Microgaming download slots are Pentium IV 1GHz processor, 128 MB of system memory and 250 MB of available hard drive space. Audio and video support would also be required. The minimum requirements would be less stringent.