Why Online Bingo Is More Social Than You Might Think
Bingo has always been regarded as a social activity, particularly among the senior crowd. In essence, it allows people to meet up with their friends and feel the excitement and thrill of the game that never ceases to amuse. But in the current circumstances, many were forced to start exploring other venues of entertainment and find a safe way to socialize. Naturally, the online version of bingo is the first thing that comes to mind. But how does it compare to its traditional offline counterpart?
Online bingo is blooming
In 2020, online bingo sites seem to be spreading like wildfire. Everyone has heard about them and chances are you know someone who frequents them on a regular basis. The recent statistics suggest there are now more than 400 online bingo sites in the UK alone (and counting). So given the recent growth, could it be that the online version of the game actually bears more social elements than one might imagine? The following facts more than support the argument:
- Traditional bingo requires silence
While there’s always some quiet banter going on at a bingo hall, it’s difficult to have a full-blown conversation with your friends. Otherwise, how would you be able to concentrate on the announcer speaking out the numbers? When it comes to online bingo, the numbers are announced automatically and you can be as loud as you want without worrying that you’ll miss your number. In the end, who knows… someone might choose to play online bingo with the entire family straight from the living room. Why not?
- The chatroom is full of people
Every single variant of online bingo incorporates an interactive chatroom, meaning there will always be a fair share of people to interact with. After all, socialization is the focal point of bingo, and software developers are well aware of that. While you’re at it, make sure to learn the game-specific lingo so you’ll have a better time hanging out with the lovely bingo crowds. Terms such as ‘LOL’ are self-explanatory, but you’d do well to also learn specialized terms like ‘BLNG’ which stands for ‘better luck next game’ or ‘HABO’, meaning ‘have a better one’.
- You’re free to multi-task
It’s hard to do other things while you’re seated down playing bingo in a traditional hall. But the online version of it is another thing. While the game is playing out, you can keep one eye on the screen while answering emails, chatting with one of your best buddies, or even babysitting the kids. You see, traditional bingo tends to be rather manual in nature. When your number is called out, you have to mark it out yourself, which requires your constant attention. Online bingo, on the other hand, is the exact opposite of that, as the numbers are registered automatically as you progress through the game. Once you’re free to divide your attention however you like, the whole world opens up and you can customize the experience just the way you’d like it to be.
- There is something for everyone
Want to meet up with a friend online, play a game, but aren’t sure what variant of bingo would best suit you both? The great thing about playing online is that there are many of them to choose from, so there’s no harm in one of you not being a traditionalist. Some of them contain slight rule changes or additional minigames to keep it exciting.
A couple of tips on how to improve your online bingo social experience
While there’s nothing wrong with firing up a vanilla-type game, there’s a whole lot you can do to enjoy yourself even more.
Choosing the right platform
First of all, do make sure to select a platform that aligns with your own preferences and needs, as there are more than a plenty to choose from, with each of them having its advantages and disadvantages. For example, if you don’t consider yourself particularly tech-savvy or if you’re in your senior years, a user-friendly interface should probably top your list of priorities.
There’s nothing like the good old bingo board
Some prefer to experience the game in its palpable form, so they may want to consider bringing a physical bingo board with them as it does have a more authentic feel to it. There is a reason why seniors still prefer to consume the news in the newspaper format as opposed to reading it online, and the reason is familiarity. In other words, holding a physical object in your hands evokes certain emotions the digital screen can emulate to a certain degree but never replace.
Video conferencing can host multiple participants at the same time
If you want to go above and beyond with the social elements, be sure to throw some video conferencing solutions like Zoom into the mix. There’s no need to have a professional microphone or camera – your smartphone will do. Then, all you have to do is arrange an online video conference with multiple participants (your friends) and play your favorite bingo variants online. A simple setup, but it works wonders. Since we live in modern times, your connection speed should be powerful enough to deliver HD quality, so you can enjoy the game with your friends regardless of what corner of the world they reside in.
Custom rules with custom prizes
Last but not least, consider the setup outlined above as a suitable alternative to online bingo sites if you’re not comfortable with them for any reason. In this case, you’d only need a bingo board and some video conferencing software to play with your friends. Of course, someone will have to take on the role of the announcer, so do make sure to take that into account. This also works great if you want to get comfortable with the game first before putting real money on the line. Even so, you can include other material prizes for the winner such as home-made cookies, apples from your backyard, or something similar. Your imagination is a great asset and it will certainly help keep things interesting!
As you can see, bingo is a social game by design, regardless of how and where you play it. But the beauty of playing it online lies in its customization potential, freedom of exploration, and sheer enjoyment that only the modern technology can deliver.
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