Coin operated slot machines once filled casino floors. Gamblers had to insert quarters/nickels to play and collect their payouts in coins.
Today’s casino environment is vastly different in this respect. Players no longer need to pump nickels and quarters into games.
Instead, they insert a bill into the acceptor and receive their payouts in tickets. This setup is referred to as ticket-in, ticket-out (TITO).
Why did coin operated slots give way to TITO games? I’ll answer this question via the following three points.
1. Attendants Had to Deal with Coin Hoppers
Coin operated slot machines feature coin hoppers. These hoppers contain coins that are paid into the slot along with prizes that are paid out.
They need to be emptied when too full and refilled when low on quarters. In short, hoppers can’t fill and refill themselves.
Instead, an attendant must deal with these hoppers. Casinos must hire attendants to walk around and handle such duties.
Gambling venues found that they could operate slots much cheaper if they didn’t have to hire extra personnel. They began favoring TITO slot machines as a result.
2. Coin Operated Slot Machines Go Down After Big Wins
Casinos lose money when their machines are down. Therefore, they do everything possible to ensure that slot machines operate without hiccups.
Coin-based slots, unfortunately, go down anytime they pay a large jackpot. The coins need to be refilled after they rush out of the hopper and into a gambler’s waiting arms.
TITO slots, in contrast, don’t stop running after a jackpot. After all, the payout value simply goes onto the printed ticket.
3. Maintenance Difficulties
Coin operated slot machines are difficult to maintain. If they break, they require special parts that aren’t around today.
A casino can’t just call up their manufacturer and quickly get a replacement part. They instead need to order a part and wait longer for it to be specially made.