Bingo has been popular for centuries, since it made its way over from Italy in the 16th century, but it really began to take off after a change in the law that was introduced in 1961. Before then, bingo was played at charity events and fundraisers and was always popular but the prizes were often nominal or donated.
The Betting and Gaming Act of 1960 came into effect on New Year’s day and allowed players to take their chances to potentially bigger prizes and savvy business owners began to introduce bingo into dance halls, theatres and other public spaces. As bingo became more widely available, it rose in popularity as bingo halls became centres for social interaction as well as providing a fun night of play and a chance to win big.
At its peak, in the 1980s, bingo was one of the most popular pastimes in the UK. Unlike sports betting, which was and still is a male-dominated sphere, bingo was more popular among women who appreciated the chance to relax after a long week at work, spend time with friends and stand a chance of winning some cash.
Bingo in the digital age
The digital revolution has seen huge changes in the entertainment industry and bingo halls kept pace with the changing face of fun towards the end of the 20th century. As video games became more popular, bingo halls adopted the new technology as well and many introduced electronic bingo.
Screens were installed for players that wanted to embrace the new format, and bingo halls began to offer special deals and bundles for those who wanted to play with more cards.
Like other digital games, electronic bingo enabled people to play faster and with more cads as the computer ordered them to show the card most likely to win on top.
By combining a traditional game with cutting edge technology, bingo began the transition into digital form, paving the way for the online bingo explosion that players have enjoyed in recent years. Part of the appeal of playing digital versions of bingo is that the games can be themed to make them more engaging and offer players an even better experience.
Games such as slingo bingo combine traditional slots with bingo for a game that has all the fun of both and the excitement of watching the wheels spin towards a potential win as well. These games also offer plenty of free spins, special offers and promotions to give players even more chances to win.
The unique appeal of the game
One of the most engaging aspects of bingo is its simplicity – checking numbers off against randomly drawn balls means that it is very easy to get the hang of the gameplay. However, any experienced player can tell you that playing more does improve your skills, and familiarity with the game does give you an advantage.
This is because playing bingo can stimulate parts of your brain and help to improve your mental speed and agility, memory and the ability to focus on an activity while still taking in information about what is happening around you. Research from Julie Winstone, based at the Centre for Visual Cognition in the Department of Psychology at Southampton University, has revealed a number ofmental benefits to playing bingo.
Ms Winstone found that those who played bingo maintained better hand-eye coordination than those who didn’t, as well as having better visual recognition skills and pattern recognition ability. Although this was more noticeable in older players, the benefits were still present in younger players, so bingo is not only a fun and sociable way to spend your time, but it can also help keep your brain agile and maintain cognitive function.
The social side of bingo
The gaming side of bingo lends itself to playing online as every aspect can be replicated effectively with the addition of themed games, special bonuses and special offers. The social aspect of the game has also become a large part of the online offering, with providers offering chat rooms, strong social media communities and plenty of players like being able to chat as they play.
Mobile gaming has enabled bingo fans to go online and play wherever they are, whether that’s gathering in one place and playing together to joining each other online for a game no matter where each player is. There’s no need to find a time and place that suits everyone – players can meet online whenever works for them and there are always other bingo fans to play with even if you fancy a quick game on your own,
Bingo has been popular for centuries precisely because it is easy to play – it is a popular educational tool used to help children to develop the ability to recognise everything from shapes and colours to more complex subjects. With such a low barrier to entry, it’s no surprise that there are plenty of people who continue to enjoy bingo throughout their lives, especially considering the long-term benefits of playing the game.
Online bingo has brought this traditional game into the modern-day, giving existing fans a new way to enjoy their favourite game and encouraging new players to have a go. With so many different versions of the game available, anyone can find an online bingo game that they will love playing.