Choosing the best live casino: top operators unpicked
Itching to play an immersive game of Roulette or Baccarat?
Live Casino, is a way to give online casino play an extra dimension. In this version, the casino sessions are run by live online dealers who conduct the games in real-time through a video streaming system.
Most operators also offer a live chat, to increase the real-life feel of this casino experience. Typically, the dealers are dressed to fit the glamorous Vegas theme.
Although live casinos are much more expensive to run than your average online casino, top operators have developed impressive platforms. There is so much on offer that it may be difficult for users to decide which platform is most suitable for their needs.
To help you navigate, Betminded has decided to give you a comprehensive review of the best platforms which are currently on the web. We will be comparing top operators including Coral, William Hill, Betfair, Bet365 and Ladbrokes
Welcome Bonuses are often an important perk when deciding which platform is the most enticing, here are a few sign-up offers which seemed very attractive to us.
|£25||£25||Wager your deposit eight times, total stakes £200 or more|
|£20||100% matched up to £200||Wager your bonus 60 times on live casino (excluding Baccarat) in seven days|
|£10||£150% matched bonus up to £150||Wager your deposit plus your bonus 20 times in 30 days|
|£10||£50||Wager your allocated bonus plus deposit 20 times in 30 days, not all games will have the same wagering percentage|
|£10||£50||Wager your allocated bonus 24 times in 28 days, not all games will have the same wagering percentage. Most of the games are from the casino section of the site, not the live casino|
|£0||100% matched upto £400||Wager your bonus 100 times in five days, not all games will have the same wagering percentage|
When looking for the most advantageous bonus it's important to study the conditions as well as the money received.
In this case, although on the face of it, Betfair appears to have the best offer, upon closer inspection, it requires a lot of wagering in a very short time frame.
Offers from Ladbrokes and Bet365 give their users a whole month to fulfills the criteria which is more reasonable.
Moreover, whilst some games count more towards the conditions than others on Ladbrokes, the table games are weighted equally on Bet365 giving this platform an advantage. More importantly, Ladbrokes offers a maximum bonus of £50 whereas Bet365 offers triple this amount.
Whilst it is exceptionally difficult to find a good quality platform which requires no deposit, Ladbrokes and Bet365 only require a very small one.
If are a looking for a platform where you can play occasionally without investing too much cash then William Hill could also be a good option. Although the bonus is low so are the wagering requirements.
Coral's may look appealing but it is not specifically tailored to the live casino, however if you prefer to play craps and video poker without the real-time dealing, you may prefer this type of bonus.
It just so happens that the leading platforms are all sportbooks with live casinos. All of the operators featured below started off by being sports betting platforms before offering members additional opportunities for online gaming..
Here is an overview of the features offered on their online live casinos:
|Operators||BlackJack||Roulette||Casino Hold'em (Poker)||Baccarat||Top Features||Mobile|
|Immersive Roulette, high quality video, glamourous dealers|
|Fun brand shown through interesting Advertising Campaign|
|Live list of games being played with dealer photos|
|High quality graphics and international reach with both Euro and Asian Live Dealers|
|Brand new to the site, stylish dealers, helpful game rules section|
Although the offering may seem to be very similar across all platforms, it is the small details which are often most important when selecting a platform. Since these are sites are all amongst the market leaders, they all offer the same baseline quality:
- Live streaming
- High quality video
- Professional and attractive dealers
- A timeless selection of table games, such as Blackjack, roulette, poker and Baccarat
Beyond that, both William Hill and Ladbrokes stand out of the pack for providing a section which gives advice and tips to new players. However, whilst William Hill has impressive video content full of tips on how to navigate through the site, Ladbrokes merely provides its users with a comprehensive write-up of the rules.
William Hill also shines through its wide selection of table games, offering twists like Immersive Roulette, BlackJack sidebet and 3 card Poker. The other sites have a much more traditional offering in this respect.
Nevertheless, Bet365 can be commended for its ethnic diversity, this platform clearly has a more cosmopolitan approach to hiring dealers. The online dealers come from a range of nationalities within Europe and Asia.
Other offers and promotions
All of the chosen operators offer a range of promotions for their Sportsbook and Casino but we have singled out Bet365‘s offer for its festive feel and William Hill who wins the day for its specific Live Casino VIP scheme. Beyond this, it is common for operators to introduce offers of specific tournaments or give out bonus jackpots so keep a close eye on the latest offers.
Bet 365- Christmas Day Live Casino Games Give away competition
Bet365 has a range of exciting offers across casino and live casino with a particular emphasis on the Christmas season.
They offer an advent calendar packed full of promotion including a jackpot live tournament on Christmas day with a £500 1st prize.
William Hill- VIP Membership
William Hill offers a specialized VIP membership by invitation to reward loyal customers of the online live casino. High profile customers are granted a personalized VIP host, as well as entry to exclusive rooms hosted by Mayfair trained hosts. They can also be invited to VIP events. Members will also receive higher bonuses and jackpots to reflect their status.
This promotion is especially impressive because it is valid all year around and applies specifically to the live casino. Although Bet365 also offers a VIP casino scheme it is not specifically tailored to the live option.
Live Casino Mobile Applications
Adapting a good online Live Casino site to a mobile platform is no mean feat. The ability to stream live on-the-go requires a very complex and competent application.
This operator offers an application which is compatible with iPhone, iPad and Android.
You can download the app for free on the App store and enjoy perks such as:
- Secure transfers
- High quality graphics and video streaming
- A website quality game offering
The App offers 25 game tables with 65 dealers to choose from which you can interact with on your tablet or phone around the clock
You can also choose to enable your notifications to benefit from the latest promotions in real time.
Bet365 offers a section of instant play games on their casino as well as a downloadable app available for the iPhone and iPad
Features of this app include:
- Direct chats with dealers
- Use of existing account to sign in and play
- Secure payments across all games
- Same game offering as website
Betfair also has a app which is available on IOS and Android operating systems. Its main features are:
- Use of existing account
- Same game offering as website
The Coral App is available on Android and IOS systems. Its notable features are:
- Use of existing account
- Fast streaming in 3G, 4G and wifi
- Regular offers
Final review – The Verdict
When comparing and contrasting these 5 sportsbook who have tried their luck at live casino, William Hill comes out victorious for us. Although all platforms have a strong game offering, great joining offers and a strong mobile offering, William Hill just goes the extra mile.
William Hill have invested in video content which really improves the user experience online. You can trial their platform through a series of very informative clips. They also offer a more creative range of games than other platforms as well as highly attractive and professional dealers. Additionally, they have an outstanding mobile phone application.
Although their bonus offers may not be as generous as other operators they have consistent promotions and a better overall offering.
Bet365 is close second as it offers direct chats with dealers and a superior joining offer but its perks are not quite as numerous at William Hill‘s.
Unfortunately, Coral lags behind, although it has a casino section with great slot offers and prominent table games like craps, its live casino is still a work in progress. With no specific joining offers and a less user friendly navigation, it lacks the diversity of its competitors.
The Home of Betting
Is one of the largest book makers in the UK which has been around since 1936. Due to its history it is no surprise that the company has created a real betting empire, ranging from a highly successful sportsbook to a state of the arts online casino. In recent times, they have become noticeable for their user friendly site and corresponding mobile applications.
However, if your choice of casino is influenced by the dealers we won't judge, check out our ranking of the hottest live dealers