Card counting in blackjack is one of the few skills that will allow you to beat the house if you become sufficiently skilled. While this is true when gambling in a casino, the number of online games is increasingly rapidly and therefore the big question is “is it possible to make money using blackjack card counting online?”
The first problem for card counters in online blackjack is the shuffling of the deck. In a casino, the card counter can observe the dealer and the shuffles as they occur. This means that the counter knows the amount of deck penetration (assuming they know the number of decks within the game)
Online Blackjack card counting (self.blackjack). It would work in practicality if you just wait for them to switch it I suppose. Unlike in poker, the suits of the cards have no effect on the game. Only their numerical value comes into play in blackjack. Cards 2–10 are counted at face value—in other words, a two of hearts, spades, diamonds, and clubs always equals two points, and so on up the ladder to the 10.
In online blackjack the algorithms within the software shuffle the virtual deck every deal. This makes it almost impossible for even a skilled card counter to obtain a reasonable count with any degree of confidence. It follows that beating the online game, using card counting alone is not possible over the longer term.
This leads to the question: is there any other way to beat online blackjack? Is it possible to beat the house edge?
Online Blackjack Bonuses
The short answer is that online bonuses present just such an opportunity. Many online games offer generous sign up terms, provided you play a sufficient amount of hands to initiate the payment of the bonus. Simply put, this means that the amount of expected losses from the majority of players must be sufficient to pay for the bonus payouts. Combining some level of card counting, together with a precise betting strategy can reduce the house edge significantly. In some cases adding in the effect of bonus terms means that the edge is weighted more in your favor than that of the house.
As always, it’s clearer if we consider a specific example. Let’s assume that an online game provider offers a deposit bonus of up to 100% of your deposit if your initial deposit is of sufficient size. With many online blackjack companies, to obtain this 100% will require a relatively substantial deposit, which may be several hundred dollars.
Blackjack Switch Card Counting Software
The next trick is that they won’t simply payout (or let you withdraw) the bonus, but will instead retain it within your online account until you have made bets totaling some multiple of the bonus. If you deposit $400, then the offer may be a further $400 in deposit bonus, making $800 in total. This extra may not be available to use until you have made a further $12000 in bets (i.e. thirty times the bonus amount).
Assuming a typical edge in an online game (assuming a single deck) is around 0.28%, this means that the $12000 in bets will lose you $33.60 or 0.28% of $12000. Once this $12000 has been spent then the further deposit of $400 is made available (if it hasn’t been at the time of the deposit).
At this point most players will continue and spend the $400, losing another 0.28% or $1.12 and therefore the total loss is $34.72. This might not sounds like much but when you scale it up to the vast amounts of money now being wagered in online blackjack games then the overall profit is significant.
The real trick is to keep the play tight and use appropriate card counting and betting strategy, together with the added bonus to push the overall edge in your favor. While it is not possible to create as large an edge in blackjack card counting online when compared with the normal casino game, it is possible to generate some profit. Clearly the overheads spent on casino games such as travel, lodgings and subsistence will be eliminated since the online game can be played at home.
Live Dealer Blackjack
Another method is to watch out for games that use a real online dealer rather than software. This means that shuffles are less frequent and card counting becomes more effective. Some casinos also offer a no deposit bonus. This is another way of gaining an edge assuming the no deposit bonus is of sufficient size.
There are some reports that skilled players have gained a suitable edge by playing multiple hands from a single deck game. If 5 hands are allowed then it is possible to bet small on the first four hands and then assess if a larger bet is worthwhile in the remaining hand. You might even take this to an extreme with a $1 wager on the first four hands and if a sufficient edge then exists bet $500 on the final hand.
Blackjack Switch Card Counting App
Overall, it is far more difficult to gain sufficient player edge from the online game than it is from the real casino game.
Taking into account the fact that the game can be played from home, it is possible to play far more games over as specified period of time at home than in the casino and given the right strategy it may be possible to match the returns of the casino game when blackjack card counting online.