Gambling Behaviour in Mobile Phones

mobile gambling game

Smartphones are becoming the dominant means of online gambling with many casinos offering dedicated mobile apps to allow players to gamble on their favourite games anywhere and anytime. These devices resemble mini PCs with full operating systems, powerful processors and vivid displays that are capable of rendering 3D gaming environments. In addition, they are able to connect to high-speed wireless Internet connections. As a result, the market for mobile gambling is expected to grow rapidly, attracting billions of dollars in investment each year.

In the present study, participants were asked to download and engage with a simulated gambling app that utilised a fixed rate of reinforcement on a random ratio schedule and a number of levels of reward. The experiment was run in a lab setting and participants were rewarded for engaging with the app, as well as completing a series of questionnaires (Gambling Questions, PGSI, Barratt Impulsiveness Scale, Beck Depression Inventory, PANAS State and GRCS) and a computerised contingency judgement task that probed the illusion of control. Contextual information about app use and location were also collected through a series of self-report questions and GPS data was recorded each time a gamble was made.

Despite the popularity of mobile gambling, there is a scarcity of research that explores its potential for addiction. Most studies on mobile gambling have primarily relied upon self-report measures and a limited amount of behavioural and cognitive experiments to measure gambling behaviour. This article aims to add to this limited body of knowledge by examining gambling behaviour in the context of mobile phones using an experimental design that is designed to capture associative processes that may contribute to harmful gambling habits.

In order to do this, the authors developed a simulated gambling app that was designed specifically for use on Android and iOS mobile phones. This was then used to examine the effects of interaction with the app on behaviour in acquisition and extinction phases of the game. A number of interesting results emerged from the study, including that perseverative gambling behaviour was linearly related to previous engagement with the app, and that the duration of breaks between gambles correlated with the amount of reinforcement received.

The authors conclude that the results of this study suggest that associative processes in mobile gambling are comparable to those in other interactive gambling technologies, and that it is important for future studies to consider incorporating these types of measures into the study design. They argue that the increasing prominence of mobile gambling makes this an especially important area for future exploration of its addictive potential.

Currently, most online casino sites offer dedicated mobile apps that can be downloaded from either the Apple iStore or Google Play. Most of these apps are designed to be a perfect fit for the device they are running on and are optimized for the performance of that phone’s processor and GPU. Some apps can even be launched offline, allowing you to enjoy a seamless gaming experience regardless of whether you are connected to the internet or not.