Online casinos have now been a part of the gambling landscape for nearly 20 years. The first Internet-based casinos began operating around 1995 and 1996, after Microgaming developed the first online casino software platform that was safe and reliable enough for real money play. Sources differ on which online casino was the first to go into operation, but most point to either InterCasino (which began operation in early 1995) or GamingClub (which was established in 1994) as having the legitimate claim to being the first to take bets online.
The next few years saw an explosion of online casino options for players, as more and more entrepreneurs attempted to claim a stake in the burgeoning online gambling industry. By the turn of the 21st century, online casinos were a billion dollar industry.
In the last decade, online gamblers have seen a huge improvement in the quality and quantity of the gaming options available to them. Instant play and browser-based casino clients have opened Internet gambling to Mac, Linux and other users, while competition between major software providers has improved the graphical quality and overall reliability of casino software. Hundreds of different games are now available at most online casinos, and new games are released regularly, offering exciting new options for players tired of the same old casino games.