Many people who are thinking about playing blackjack online have concerns about the computer software that operates the game. This is not so strange when you consider the black eye given to the gaming industry by online poker. In the wake of cheating revelations that emerged after poker sites in the U.S. were closed down, many players lost their trust. They were convinced that the gaming software could be manipulated in such a way that players could lose.
The fear of being cheated at online blackjack is normal, but it can become irrational. Poker and blackjack work very differently when played online. The things which happened at online poker sites cannot happen with blackjack because they would have no impact.
Online Poker and Artificial Intelligence Bots
There have been some online poker sites which have been exposed for using bots at their poker tables. Most of these sites will contend that they are only using bots to fill empty seats and create a game. If this sounds familiar that’s because the “shill” or “prop” has been used in live casinos for many years. A prop or shill is a player that is essentially employed by the casino. Their job is to increase interest in the games and entice other players to play.
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Bots in online poker are used for the same purpose, but using them opens up a whole host of ethical questions. The prop in a live casino isn’t really there to win, just to draw interest. A bot, on the other hand, has no ability to reason in this regard. The bot depends upon artificial intelligence software to make its plays at the poker table. As a rule, those plays will be the same time after time. It can be easy for a player to exploit the play of a bot if they recognize it. On the other hand, a bot can wreak havoc on a poker hand and cause players to lose.
So, what happens to the money a bot wins while playing online poker? It goes to the poker website, of course. The bottom line is that bots in online poker create serious problems for the player who is trying to win money. To be fair, the use of bots on many poker sites was limited to free games and not games for real money. The important takeaway here is that your success at online poker depends, at least in part, on what other players do at the table.
Online Blackjack and Random Number Generators
If an AI bot were used at the online blackjack table, this would be rather pointless. This is mainly because your success at blackjack is not dependent on what other players do. You have to act on your hand and you are competing against the dealer. There is no one else involved.
Think for a moment about playing blackjack online. In most online casinos you are the only player at the virtual table. You can play from one to three hands. If you play at an online casino that offers live dealer blackjack, you will have other real players at the table. These are people just like you. Granted, they can make mistakes that might affect your play. But they are the ones making the decisions, not an AI bot.
What about the cards that are dealt in online blackjack? How many times have you had a 17 and the online dealer shows a 6? You stand and sometimes the dealer will draw out on you to win. There is a tendency here for you to think that the game is rigged and the software caused you to lose this hand. The reality is that you simply remember these losing hands longer than you remember the winning ones in which you hit a 16 and received a 5 to beat the dealer’s 20.
Online blackjack software uses a random number generator to determine which cards show up. The RNG does not have a memory. For example, the odds of getting a blackjack dealt are longer than receiving any two other cards because there are only 4 aces in the deck. But you can and will receive two or even three blackjacks in a row if you play enough hands online because each hand is an independent event.
Many online casinos are now using a provably fair model to substantiate their fairness. This model allows for the algorithms and hand histories to be examined and compared with statistics which “prove” the randomness of the software. There is no such provably fair model that we know of employed by online poker, but the cards in online poker are also dealt by an RNG.
Sometimes people get a little frustrated with online blackjack when they have a losing streak and automatically think the game is rigged. It just isn’t so. Online casinos have to much to lose by rigging games, and they would most certainly be caught if they did so.
Can You Beat Online Blackjack?
Counting Edge believes that yes, you can beat online blackjack. It isn’t always easy because there are a few things working against you. First and foremost each hand uses a new 52-card deck. This makes card counting practically impossible. You will have to use other methods to create winning online blackjack sessions.
Basic blackjack strategy is important online. You need to make all of the correct plays at the correct time in order to make a profit. Another element of beating online blackjack games is using proper money management. You should not be playing at high stakes games if you don’t have the bankroll to support that. We have had many players contact us about how successfully they have used our small ball blackjack strategy to amass consistent wins.
Knowledge is always your best asset at the blackjack table. The more practiced you are on the strategies of the game, the better off you will be. Practice until the right play becomes intuitive.
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