What Inspired the Use of Fruits as Symbols in Slot Machines?



Slot machines were first established in the 19th century, and since then, they have undergone many modifications, including moving from traditional casinos to land-based and internet venues, which has 100% boosted the proliferation of slot games. Charles Fey of San Francisco, California, created the first slot machine, which was first used somewhere about 1894. The machine had three reels and took coins.

The first slot machine was created by Charles Fey in the latter parts of the 19th century. It was a very straightforward game where players could win by matching any of the five symbols. The matching symbols included a horseshoe, a diamond from a deck of cards, a spade from a deck of cards, a heart from a deck of cards, and a bell, from which the Liberty Bell machine got its name. The highest reward, which was awarded when three bells rang simultaneously, was fifty cents.

Slots are often referred to as a fruit machine, puggy, fruity, or one-armed bandit. These tasty icons persisted as one of the icons that may be seen in games most commonly, both in brick-and-mortar and online settings, as reels transitioned from analog to digital.

Why were fruits used as symbols?

Fruit symbols, which are innocent and entertaining to look at, were a great choice to get around the new regulations on slot machines that payout hard currencies, enabling manufacturers to turn gaming equipment into gum dispensers. It was a more commonly accepted shape that also served as a great middle ground between the opposing parties.

Slot machines are occasionally referred to as “fruit machines” because the traditional fruit icons followed these symbols. Because the machine would award prizes in chewing gum or fruit-flavored sweets, the symbols were created to resemble pieces of fruit.

Whatever symbol the gamer lands on would determine which flavor of sweet or chewing gum would be won. Since gambling was prohibited in several US jurisdictions, the payouts were as they were. The machines would now pay out hard currency after the gambling restrictions were eased, but the fruit symbols remained entrenched.

Typically, the fruits would include cherries, apples, watermelons, lemons, and plums. But over time, practically every type of fruit has appeared in some capacity on a fruit machine or slot machine. Indeed, this tradition has continued today, as players are able to still enjoy some of the best fruit machine slot games around online.

Card symbols & values were introduced after classic fruits

Many people believe that the symbols on card games were the first known symbols to emerge on slot machines. Although only Aces, Kings, Queens, and Jacks are typically used in playing card symbols nowadays, some games will also include the number 10. But the lucky number seven—one of the most well-known gambling symbols—came from this. The highest valuable payout was typically obtained by getting three of a kind.

The Industry Novelty Company, led by O. D. Jennings introduced fruit reel symbols first. In this period of time, the first laws restricting the use of slot machines went into effect. Manufacturers started converting their gambling machines into chewing gum dispensers in order to get around these new prohibitions on cash-paying slot machines. In order to accomplish this, fruit reel symbols were used in place of card suits and numbers. The reels thereafter displayed fruit symbols following this modification. The winning fruit reel icons suggested that any prizes were different varieties of gum.

Poker was more similar to the early versions of slots than it might seem now since they used numbers and symbols from a deck of cards. The Bell-Fruit Gum Company used innocent, vibrant fruit graphics that were reminiscent of children’s play in 1913 as a rebranding strategy from earlier intense tampering of slot machines. Fruity sweets with flavors like cherries, bananas, and pineapple were frequently given from slots during this time. Nevertheless, depending on the user of the platform’s availability, the prizes quickly changed into alternatives.

As we moved into the twenty-first century, online fruit slots continue to diversify casino games by incorporating other symbols with fruits.


Naturally, things change, and the slot machine industry is no exception. The slot machine’s symbols have evolved from the 19th century to the present to become more sophisticated, fascinating, and unique.