Roulette Computers is a broad term for any technology that is used in a casino to help give players an edge over the casinos. These electronic cheating devices (as the casinos like to call them) are more often than not just a smart phone these days that is able to measure the speed of the rotor and the ball and to make accurate predictions on the zone that they ball is likely to come to a rest in.
The electronic device may be connected to a laser that accurately measures the speed of rotation of the wheel and the speed and path of the ball, and the entire piece of kit will then quickly communicate this information to the player so that he or she can make a bet on the wheel and hopefully turn a 2.6% house edge (on a European roulette wheel) into a 10% player edge.
WARNING- These devices are illegal in many countries, and even if there are no laws covering the use of them, the casinos will more than likely throw you out without your winnings.
The problem the casinos have, is that the technology that can carry out these kinds of tasks is getting very discrete (and becomes more discrete every year). Used well, they are difficult to spot unless the team gets too greedy and starts to draw attention to themselves.
The famous £1.3M roulette win in the Ritz Casino by an Eastern European team made up of 2 Serbian men and a Hungarian woman in London in 2004 is perhaps the most famous incidence of roulette computers being used to beat the house.
Roulette Computers - Are they Legal?
That depends on the country. In many countries, the law that covers roulette gambling may not have been updated to cover this new technology. In the UK, for example, the team that pulled off the £1.3 million win at the Ritz Casino in London using a roulette computer and laser device were arrested, but later released when the authorities realised that they had not committed a crime under the law at the time, as they had not physically interfered with the wheel. The law has been subsequently updated in the UK to cover this, but not all countries have followed suit.
Irrespective of the law, no casinos will allow the open use of roulette computers. You'd just get thrown out of the casino. Players who use this kind of technology hide the devices and use them secretly.
Roulette Computer Scams
Be careful when you search for "roulette computer" Next to roulette system scams, roulette computer scams are the next big thing for unscrupulous individuals trying to part you from your cash in return for a box of tricks which will magically give you a house edge at roulette. Treat any site that makes big claims with a big dose of salt. Visual ballistics (the art of predicting motion and a resting place for the ball in roulette) is very tricky. The equipment that was used by the Ritz team in London was very sophisticated and was likely worth a lot of money in itself.
Do Roulette Computers Work Online?
None of this technology is going to work on a virtual roulette game (video roulette which is more akin to a slots game with a Random Number Generator). Roulette Computers are trying to predict trends on wheels either though wheel imperfections (giving rise to hot zones), ball imperfections or dealer signature. Try it if you don't believe us- play a free roulette game for fun and test one out. You'll quickly see that they are no use against a RNG.
However, theoretically, they would work on live roulette tables. However, the casino controls the webcam and thus your view of the wheel, so it is easier for them to protect themselves against roulette computers clocking the wheel. But then, on the other hand, players are able to employ as much technology as openly as they want. Rest assured that there are some people trying to clock live roulette wheels online as you are reading this.
In summary- is there such a thing as a roulette computer that works. We'd say that this is highly probable. The problem is this- if you had invented a roulette computer that worked, would you
(a) Quietly go about your business and play roulette with your tool the world over
(b) Tell everyone about your amazing machine and sell it online.
The answer is (a) of course. The roulette computers that you see online are either the ones that don't work, or the ones that used to work on older wheels (and no longer work on the latest Huxley roulette wheels for example).
Your only option? Build one yourself.