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Microgaming's Future Technology
Sunday March 8,2015 : MICROGAMING CHIEF LOOKS TO THE FUTURE OF ONLINE GAMBLING
Mobile, virtual and augmented reality, and wearables are the technologies to watch.
During the recent ICE expo in London, online gambling software provider Microgaming's technology experts demonstrated some impressive applications of new technologies such as virtual and augmented reality, wearable mobile devices and how the gambling experience on mobile devices might be enhanced.
The company's chief executive, Roger Raatgever, has followed up on this interesting technical activity with an op-ed piece exploring the business possibilities in the UK publication Business-Reporter.
Raatgever sets the scene by quoting some industry numbers that illustrate the strength of the move to mobile and the burgeoning growth of the online gambling genre, noting that:
"Mobile is booming, and we estimate mobile gambling should account for more than half of all interactive gaming revenues by 2020. The online gambling market in 2015 is projected to be worth £23.8 billion in gross wins, nearly one third of which is estimated to come from mobile. That is expected to grow by 9 percent in 2016 to £26 billion, with mobile carving out a 39 percent market share, according to H2 Gambling Capital.
"Product-wise, betting currently accounts for 47 percent of the interactive gambling market, followed by casino on 21 percent and poker with 9 percent. Europe is the biggest market for interactive gambling, followed by Asia and the Middle East."
As an experienced chief executive in the business, Raatgever then considers the future applications of virtual reality and wearable technology, research areas in which his company has invested.
"Operating in a world where technology is at the epicentre, we believe wearables are poised to offer a unique gambling experience," he writes.
"We’ve studied hard and we believe each technology suits a different type of gaming. For example, we developed an online slot for the Oculus Rift VR and Google Cardboard headsets. The 360-degree view and interactive elements delivered an immersive experience like no other!
"This year we took our Oculus Rift offering to the next level. We created a virtual reality 3D roulette set in an expansive space scene that used advanced natural motion controls, allowing the player to place chips using their hands."
Microgaming has also developed a sports betting application for the original Google Glass, merging the in-play betting experience with live game action via augmented reality....and Raatgever says that his company is planning to work with Microsoft’s HoloLens glasses; a technology that "lends itself well to sports betting."
Using the Samsung Gear smartwatch, Microgaming has also developed the industry’s first fully-functional wearable five-reel slot, most recently launching the popular Thunderstruck game and in doing so overcoming hurdles such as platform type, form factor and screen size, for Android Wear. Follow on work will adapt the technology for Apple Watches too.
Raatgever correctly observes that players do not stick to one form of technology in the way they gamble, and that it is therefore essential for progressive companies to stay on the crest of the technology wave...hence his company's investment in developing advanced technology to meet future online gambling possibilities.
Concluding his assessment, Raatgever notes: "The wearable technology market might be in its early adopter phase right now, but the market is growing rapidly. How long until mass adoption takes hold and wearables become part of everyday life? We may not be able to place a date and time on this, but one thing we can be certain of is that there are a host of new devices and platforms on the way."
The article is worth reading as an informed opinion from a respected chief executive of a company that is among the leaders in its field; Microgaming provides its software to over 400 casino brands globally and counts over 800 games in its inventory for operators.
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