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Origins of the slot machine

The arrival of the first slot machine, called the “one-armed bandit”, was in 1887 in the large city of San Francisco.

Structure of the machine

Liberty Bell, the first slot machineThe first model, which was invented by Charles Fey, was composed of an ordinary, automatic mechanism that managed the winnings. The device of this machine was made of three rollers that each had five symbols, including a horseshoe, a clock, a heart, a spade, and a diamond.

Turning point in history

The success of this device was so great that it was banned a few years later, in 1920. However, its operating principle was adapted for candy distributors. As a result, it succeeded in having a comeback several decades later. At this moment in history, slot machines added symbols, including the cherry, the melon, the banana, and the strawberry, which have become the current emblematic symbols of this game.

Evolution of the slot machine

These roller slot machines would last until the 1960s before being slowly replaced with electromechanical slot machines and video slot machines around 1980. To learn more about the history of the slot machines, we recommend that you visit the Wikipedia page that pertains to this game. Also, joiret.com is a site that is specifically dedicated to slot machine enthusiasts and will satisfy your cultural cravings.

Slot machines in France

While they were introduced and authorized in France in 1986, the machines didn’t become successful until 1992. They succeeded in multiplying very easily and spread to all of metropolitan France.


According to current statistics, only 6 out of 176 casinos don’t have these famous machines. They show that 17,000 slot machines represent close to 90 percent of the annual business revenue. In general, a slot machine annually makes close to 150,000 euros for the casinos and surpasses the winnings of all the other existing games. With these figures, we understand clearly the reasons that all managers of land-based casinos are quick to provide their businesses with several models. In fact, without any machine on its premises, the casino would almost certainly go bankrupt.

Size of the winnings

Players in casinos show much more interest in slot machines than the various table games, because the winnings on these machines often reach an enormous amount. For your information, the record sum won on the slot machines in metropolitan France is 1.6 million euros. This sum, which was won in October 2007 in Enghien-les-Bains, surpasses the previous record set in 1993 of 1.3 million euros. It is finally worth mentioning an excellent booklet, “One-armed bandits and slot machines. The sound and colors of money,” by Jean-Pierre Martignon-Hutin. This is a work that every amateur player should read, because it helps explain the sociological aspect, which garners the enthusiasm of French players for slot machines.