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Fixed Odds Betting Terminals

Nothing has filled the tabloids over the past few years more than FOBTs.

FOBTs (Fixed Odds Betting Terminals) began appearing in UK high street bookmakers around 2001 but have gained popularity since the relaxation of gambling laws in the late 2000s.

While fruit machines have been allowed in pubs, cafes and clubs for decades, FOBTs were something new: traditional casino games like roulette, blackjack and video slots available via electronic terminals for the first time right off the high street.

There's no need to get a casino membership; FOBTs are available to anyone over 18, with stakes up to £100 permissible.

What Are FOBTs?

Fixed Odds Betting Terminals were introduced around the early 2000s, crammed into corners of bookmakers without too much government regulation.

Players can enjoy touch-screen roulette games, similar to online roulette games played today, as well as blackjack and some big-brand video slots.

The most popular game is roulette, with virtual horse and greyhound racing available on some machines. Roulette bets are made by selecting a stake and touching the numbers or outside bets to place bets. In practice they're similar to mobile roulette games.

Payouts are made via tickets which are printed out by the terminals and cashed in at the bookie counter.

While traditional high street sportsbetting is on the slide, FOBTs have helped bookies balance the books. In fact, one recent study suggested over 260 new bookmakers shops were built in the last half of 2013 in the UK alone.

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