February 11, 2019
Every year, iGaming attracts more and more people who prefer placing bets online via their desktops or mobile devices, rather than visiting land-based facilities in top-rated areas like Las Vegas, Monte Carlo or Macau. Despite unclear governmental regulations, online gambling has great potential for growth as the target audience is expanding.
Web-based casinos deliver personalized promo campaigns and reward gamblers with free top-notch games, while new technologies contribute to exceptional user experience. Let’s take a closer look at innovative iGaming tech.
The Overview of iGaming in 2018
According to Statista, the global online gambling market was worth approximately $51.96 billion in 2018. In contrast, this number was $20.51 billion in 2009 and is expected to be $59.79 billion in 2020. The growth is associated with the increasing attention to more flexible casinos types, because modern customers prefer betting from home or even on-the-go via their smartphones.
In addition, researchers claim that there’s a lot of room for improvement. Once China, South Korea, and, particularly, the USA legalize online gambling, the audience will increase significantly. New tech solutions should help the industry progress as well.
Here are some trends that have been affecting the industry for a while now:
- Live Games – allow interacting with casino dealers in real time;
- Mobile Casinos – allow playing casino games anywhere and anytime;
- Advanced graphics and sounds – create immersive environment.
Groundbreaking iGaming Solutions
Although most of the below mentioned technologies had been invented before 2018, they became increasingly popular in iGaming last year. So, the gambling community should consider them when trying to predict future trends. For the sake of simplicity, we’ve divided the list into two broad categories: general technologies which aren’t focused on games exclusively, and industry-specific technologies launched to enhance the experience of players.
This section includes three primary achievements of 2018 in the field of global tech. Of course, they can be applied to iGaming as well. The list is sorted in accordance with overall popularity and usefulness.
Blockchain and Cryptocurrency
Blockchain is a wonderful invention which powers encrypted decentralized (aka peer-to-peer) systems, where users can transact cryptocurrency without intermediaries. For iGaming, it means that gamblers are provided with simple and secure payment options that are beyond regulators’ control. Cryptocurrency betting became the hottest trend of 2018.
The problem is that the emerging tech remains pretty complex for a wide audience. In 2018, numerous casinos added support for Bitcoin, and even encouraged their customers to use it by offering crypto bonuses at dedicated websites. So, 2019 might see more casinos add cryptocurrency to their platforms. Moreover, it is expected that new truly decentralized gaming websites will emerge. Most likely, the crypto world will expand significantly over the years.
AR and VR
Augmented reality and virtual reality solutions are promising but less useful for online gambling facilities, at least for now. Of course, they can boost gaming experience significantly because players interact within immersive environment using goggles or headsets. Let’s say, with AR, it’s possible to deploy a poker table inside your room or launch virtual betting interfaces, while VR allows you to dive in virtually simulated games.
However, these technologies require expensive devices and still are rarely used in modern casinos.
This innovative wireless network technology is essential for all on-the-go gamblers. Wi-Fi hotspots are not so widespread yet, that’s why high-speed cellular connection is really useful to keep playing everywhere. In 2018, 5G became the global technology, so you can enjoy your favorite games all around the world.
On the other hand, we have three cutting-edge solutions which are perfectly applicable to gambling and gaming. Here they are.
1. Voice and Gestures
While video games have been supporting voice- and gesture-controlled gameplay for a long time, iGaming is just beginning to employ these wonderful solutions. Now, online gamblers can also control the process using voice commands or various motions. Likewise, you can ask the casino system to place a bet, open certain slots, enter a Live Game, or interact with real dealers through voice chat, and so on. Obviously, casinos have to install special software to enable such actions.
2. Gambling Bots
With the rise of AI (Artificial Intelligence), various chatbots, assistants, and automated programs emerged. Check some of the brightest examples below:
- Communication bots provide customer support services;
- Betting helpers analyze bets and place them;
- Sports traders maintain various wagers and work out strategies.
Similar to AR/VR, voice and gesture tech, AI is still rarely used in online casinos. But we hope that providers will add more options in the future.
3. Integrated Platforms
This technology is well-known and is wonderfully compatible with modern trends. Software solutions like Playtech ONE gather all essential aspects of your gameplay within a single system. For instance, you can create one account, deposit money, and use it to access all games from any device. Integrated platforms are breakthrough because modern customers tend to use desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones for gambling. Give them an option to play casino games from all devices, and you will steal the scene.
The Bright Future of iGaming
Over the next years, the industry of iGaming should be developing at a rapid pace. Blockchain, AR/VR, smart assistants, and all-round experience will make online casinos even more entertaining and fun. Of course, we shouldn’t forget about regulations, laws, and responsible gambling because the problem of addiction may become more dangerous with increased accessibility. Enjoy new technologies but remember security and play safe.
Acquiring a wealth of experience in writing articles on trends and prospects for the development of the game industry in the world I've found myself as a Freelance Journalist. I am writing now about blockchain and cryptocurrencies trends, sometimes covering the importance of bitcoin for various other industries.