Penny slots are the most popular games in the casino
Over the years, as games have changed and the price of everything in the world has increased, so to has the definition of what, exactly, a penny slot is. At the same times, though, the principle remains the same.
In essence, a penny slot is any game where a single pay-line can cost only 1 cent. Which is actually most slots in the casino, these days.
The big difference between penny slots 10 years ago and penny slots today, is that most machines will make you play a minimum number of lines. So, many games now will require you to play 25, 40 or 50 lines per spin, meaning that your penny slot play will cost you a minimum of 25c, 40c, or 50c per spin.
Back in the day, a lot of video slot machines had a maximum of 5 or possibly 9 pay-lines and allowed you to play as little as one single line. So, you really could play a single cent per spin.
It didn't take too long for casinos to figure out that players that were playing a single cent per spin were not particularly profitable. Especially when you consider they might be accepting the free drinks etc
So, the minimum pay-line slot was born and these days it is totally normal to play 50 cents per spin on a game, which is still considered to be a penny slots.
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