A few months back I wrote about how casino poker dealers should fear for their jobs since the induction of automated poker tables (see this here). After all, these electronic tables are said to have several advantages over traditional poker tables – the most glaring one being that casinos could save more money over the long haul by using the machines.
Well now dealers should really worry since the automated tables have been making appearances in Las Vegas casinos as of late. The Excalibur is the latest large-scale casino to utilize these tables and they have replaced every single regular table in their poker room.
As mentioned before, the biggest reason that casinos have started using these machines is because they realize the amount of money that can be saved. Going beyond the money aspect, automated tables are also virtually mistake-free, the tables won’t bitch when you don’t tip them, the game will go much faster this way, and cheating will be harder.
However, there’s plenty of downside to using the electronic poker tables too. For one thing dealers will be losing their jobs, people won’t have the pleasure of chatting with the dealer, and a lot will be taken from the overall poker experience.
So my question is this: if a lot of casinos start switching to the automated tables, then what will motivate people to play poker at a casino rather than online in their own home? Obviously people can still talk to other players, but it will be a lot more of a come and go experience with everything seeming much more robotic. Plus the experience of being dealt cards and pushing chips back and forth will be taken out of the game. In short the more casinos that choose go to this format, the less I’ll want to play poker in casinos.