Mobile Bingo I September 2017
- Most UK bingo sites offer some kind of mobile bingo
- Mobile bingo sites work in HTML5 not Adobe Flash
- Play mobile bingo from a phone or tablet anywhere there is a data service or Wi-Fi
- Access can be via a mobile bingo app or via a phone or tablet browser
- To be listed here mobile bingo sites must offer the full bingo experience on mobile
mFortune, which was UK regulated from the start, is mobile based, and you register via a passcode which is sent to your mobile, but you…
Mecca Bingo is a Virtue Fusion bingo site run by a grand old name in British bingo – play in a bingo hall, online…
Bet365 is perhaps the most British of British bookies (bet365.com originated in a Portakabin in a car park in Stoke-on-Trent and is now the…
It was all change at bgo in Summer 2015 – the site migrated from unique bingo software to the Virtue Fusion platform and became fronted by Paris Hilton (although she…
Wink Bingo is on the Joy of Bingo network and has been around for so long now that the original dancing dog in the…
Bingo.com is a name that has been around for years and years. It is now owned by the Kindred Group (aka Unibet) and has…
Queen Bee Bingo is a brand new bingo site on the new Dragonfish Real Bingo Network. If you haven’t come across this network before,…
Coral Bingo is a big name Virtue Fusion site that has had a couple of makeovers in the last few years, the most recent…
Bringo Bingo is a Dragonfish / Cassava / 888 bingo site from Ignite, the people behind Costa Bingo. Themed on a fictitious TV quiz…
Betfair Bingo is a Virtue Fusion / Playtech bingo site which was first launched in 2013. For a while the bingo was looking a little…
Mobile bingo sites used to be few and far between. These days not only have they become very much the rule, but user-friendliness is massively improved from the early days. Mobile bingo apps make login super easy as there is no need to remember anything except your username and password or passcode.
Before the advent of mobile bingo, if you wanted to play online bingo and see how the game panned out you'd be tied to your desk. Not any more! Play on a tablet or smartphone and you can play mobile bingo anywhere around the house or garden, as well as on the move. You could even play with a group of friends if they all have their tablets with them - how's that for a 21st century idea?
- Mobile Bingo - How It Works
- Mobile Bingo - Network/Software Overview
Mobile Bingo - How It Works
Mobile Bingo and Adobe Flash
When bingo first went online, the vast majority of bingo and slots programs were written using Adobe Flash and even in 2017 some still are. Apple have never supported Flash
and while early versions of Android did, more recent versions don't. Although it is possible to install Flash
on some modern Android phones by overriding the security settings, the combination of Flash and a touchscreen rarely works well. While there is an alternative way to get Flash on a phone or tablet by installing a proxy browser such as Puffin,
this is NOT RECOMMENDED for any sort of real money gaming; Puffin run the Flash on their cloud servers which are physically located in the USA where online gambling is illegal. As most bingo sites now offer mobile bingo via HTML5 there is no longer any need to try and get Flash on mobile devices anyway.
Responsive Mobile Bingo
With this arrangement, when you visit the bingo site from the browser on your phone or tablet, the site auto-detects that and loads a version of the site that is optimised for your screen size (and does not use Flash). These mobile bingo sites are written in HTML5 and there's no need to download anything. That sounds great, but in the early days of mobile bingo some bingo sites had a rather lax approach to security; rather than having secure browsing enabled for the entire session they would only switch to secure browsing if the player tried to make a deposit - creating a potential security problem for anyone who used mobile bingo at those sites over public wi-fi
(in a coffee shop, for instance). Nowadays it is usual for the entire mobile bingo session to be secure and this can be verified by checking for the https (rather than http) and padlock sign in the browser address bar before login:
Modern browsers such as Google Chrome will also take a look behind the scenes to check the bingo site's security credentials and will let you know in no uncertain terms if there is a problem with the security certificate!
This helps protect players from malicious typosquatting
(where hackers set up a site with a name almost identical to a well known and trusted site, that could easily be typed in by mistake or clicked on without noticing the difference).
Mobile Bingo Apps
The advantages of playing via a mobile bingo app on a phone or tablet instead of using the device's built in browser are those of convenience and security - as there is no need to type in a site address there is no danger of falling foul of typosquatting, and as the browser is bypassed there is no danger of accidentally saving the password in the browser settings thus inadvertently allowing children who use the same devices (or the same browser ID on a different device) to access a gambling account.
This is all very well if you are playing on an iOS device as you can simply go to the App Store to download the official mobile bingo app. The best way to do this is via the App Store button on the bingo site in question rather than by going to the App Store independently; there have been many cases of fake apps in the App Store including fake shopping apps
and fake Minecraft games
so it is important to make sure that you get the genuine article.
If you use an Android device it is more complicated as Google doesn't allow real money gambling apps in the Play store (although this is set to change from August 2017), so an Android app button on a bingo site will initiate a direct download (on the plus side, this does ensure that you have the real app). The default security settings on Android devices don't allow non Play store apps to be installed so it is necessary to alter them prior to installing the app; when real money mobile bingo apps first came out this was not an easy process and players were often unwilling to do it for fear of being left susceptible to viruses or hackers.
These days it is not necessary to mess about with the security settings before starting the download. Modern Android phones pop up a warning when you try to install a non Play store app and offer the opportunity to change the security settings for that installation only, reverting to the default immediately afterwards.
This is still quite a palaver in comparison to an Apple installation - especially when one clicks through all the warnings to complete the installation of the mobile bingo app only to end up with this facepalm moment:
The situation with the Google Play store and gambling apps is reportedly changing in the near future; one reason they were historically not allowed is that unlike the Apple store, the Play store was not geo-gated. Geo-gating has now been implemented and this means that real money gambling apps including mobile bingo can be made available only for customers in parts of the world where online gambling is legal - starting with the UK, France and Ireland.
Another installation path for mobile bingo apps is via a link or passcode sent by text message to the player's mobile phone and this is the method generally used by phone only casinos. It is super easy to use and has good security, but you do have to give them your mobile phone number and some players may prefer not to.
Mobile Bingo - Network/Software Overview
With a couple of exceptions (Jumpman and Gamesys, as detailed below) most bingo software has a fully functional mobile version. The main differences between the different mobile bingo platforms are in the number of tickets that are displayed on screen at a time and in how the chat is handled.
Dragonfish bingo sites
have a responsive mobile version which is automatically loaded when you try to access the site from a phone or tablet. Some also have iOS and/or Android apps but these are not genuine apps - all they do is install a shortcut to the mobile site on the phone. It's quite common for there to be exclusive mobile and tablet only bingo rooms and promotions. The mobile bingo works in portrait mode only and displays a small number of tickets. Chat is accessible via a pop-up but with the chat open it is not possible to see the game being played.
The tablet version puts everything including the chat and mini games back on the same screen and during 2017 many Dragonfish bingo sites started offering the tablet version on the desktop as an alternative to the classic lobby.
Virtue Fusion / Playtech
The Virtue Fusion bingo sites
that belong to the really big name bookies all have mobile versions and in many cases iOS and/or Android apps, and again it is not unusual to find special mobile bingo promotions. It used to be the case that smaller name Virtue Fusion sites did NOT generally have any mobile bingo, but now that Playtech are replacing the old Flash desktop client with the HTML5 version (as shown below) which enables seamless play across all devices, mobile and tablet play is available everywhere.
On a phone, many items are moved off screen to make room for the bingo tickets; the chat can be accessed via the buttons at the bottom of the screen, as can slots, settings and help.
Virtue Fusion HTML5 bingo can be set to Simplified Ticket View (as seen on the right above; the top ticket on the left corresponds to the second to top ticket on the right). This doesn't show you your actual bingo tickets, but instead shows you how many TG each ticket is and which balls each ticket needs for the win; it used to be the default setting for mobile bingo but now, somewhat annoyingly, if you switch to it on your phone it shows up on all other devices as well.
In early 2016 Virtue Fusion rolled out their first bingo variant, the HTML5 only Cash Cubes
, that was clearly designed with mobile bingo in mind, and every bingo variant introduced at Playtech bingo sites
since then - and there have been quite a few such games that are exclusive to one particular site - has also been HTML5 only.
All Cozy bingo sites
have no mobile app, but have a good looking HTML5 mobile version which will auto detect your mobile device when you visit the site from a phone browser. The mobile bingo works in both portrait and landscape and even thoughtfully asks whether you would like to play with the sound on or off! There's no chat on the phone version though.
The Jumpman sites on the 15 Network
used to have a mobile version which looked almost exactly like the desktop version (but without some of the side games) but this never worked well on phones as there was so much crammed on to the small screen that it was impossible to see what was going on. Now, if the site detects a phone login, a cut down version of the site is served up that is mostly focused on slots; although it is possible to pre-buy tickets for any bingo room you can't get into the bingo room itself or view the tickets after paying for them, and can't see the bingo game being played or have access to the chat. All you get is a pop-up at the end of the game (if still online) showing who won. As a mobile bingo offering goes, this barely qualifies as one at all.
Stride's Daub Alderney
bingo sites have an HTML5 mobile version and will auto detect mobile devices; when this was first enabled there was no chat, but it can now be accessed using the tab at the bottom of the screen. The Jackpot Liner group of sites which are also managed by Daub Alderney have different software and no mobile bingo.
The Bede Gaming
bingo software, which powers Bingo Godz
and a few other sites, was originally developed with mobile bingo in mind so not surprisingly it looks great on a smartphone and there's no need to download anything. The lobby works in either portrait or landscape mode but once inside a bingo room you'll need to be in portrait. Chat is particularly easy to access as all you need to do is scroll down.
All Microgaming bingo sites
have mobile bingo now, even though most of them don't advertise it on their desktop site. This is another mobile version that only works in portrait mode and has the chat in a pop up. It is still possible to see the game being played even if you don't buy any tickets.
The Relax Gaming
bingo software is relatively new and was developed when mobile bingo was already a thing, so it comes as no surprise that the mobile version includes all the features of the desktop version (for instance, the information about which other players have 1TG or 2TG and which numbers they need). The chat is in a pop-up but in a nice touch, it is translucent so it is possible to chat and see the bingo game at the same time.
The Intouch mobile phone bingo platform is exclusive to mFortune
and is really very good indeed (albeit 90 ball only). The chat is on the same screen as the bingo but does not look at all cramped, and everything else including things like the loyalty shop is really easy to access. To install, you login to the mFortune desktop site and request to have the bingo game sent to your mobile - the link to download arrives by text.
The mobile version of Tombola Bingo
can be accessed either via phone browser or via their mobile bingo app. It includes all their conventional bingo games and most of their other games and is one of the best as far as being able to see the numbers on the tickets. Chat is in a pop-up and does not obscure the whole game - the calls and the top ticket are still visible when the chat window is open. Tombola also have Stars, a weekly free game that is played by phone.
Gamesys bingo sites
generally have a mobile service but it is almost entirely about the slots and is a very much a poor relation as far as bingo is concerned. Virgin Games
for instance only has one (90 ball) bingo room accessible from mobiles and none at all from tablets. Just two of the bingo rooms at Jackpot Joy
- 90 ball Sapphire Bingo and 75 ball Lounge Bingo - can be accessed on phone or tablet via a browser; their mobile app does not include any bingo at all.
B-Live is the software that powers Bingocams
and Bright Bingo
. Mobile bingo arrived at these sites in Summer 2015; unusually it works in landscape mode only (and without the cams that are the USP of Bingocams).