Vegetarians, M & Ms, and Harry Potter
– current and future trends in betting and gaming
IAGR - 2014
Christina Thakor-Rankin
1710 Gaming Ltd
Discussion Points
• Social Gaming
• Digital & Crypto Currencies
• Interactive, multi-channel and TV
• Push technology, Siri and next gen In-Play
• Multi-channel - Augmented reality (AR) to Virtual Reality (VR)
• Invisibility Cloaks
Has The Social Gaming Bubble Burst?
"Facebook has already reached the peak of its
popularity and has entered a decline phase.
Peaked in December 2012
Will lose 80% of users between 2015/17
Is Social Gaming Still A Concern?
Social Sports Betting (Betfair light)
Social version of the exchange model - peer to peer and community
Human v human NOT human v machine – ‘hearts and minds’
Driven by challenges, bragging rights and earning kudos
Taking an established social circle activity onto a wider, bigger community
Plays on ‘put your money where your mouth is’
• Do gamblers want their friends to see their losing streak?
• Do gamblers want to be seen as the ‘mug punter’?
Social Gaming = Vegetarian Gambling
Looks a lot like regular bacon
Tastes a lot like regular bacon
Feels a lot like regular bacon
ISN’T actually meat
Looks a lot like regular gambling
Plays a lot like regular gambling
Feels a lot like regular gambling
ISN’T actually gambling
Used by:
Vegetarians - experience without conscience
Meat eaters - trying to cut down
Meat eaters - who can’t access real meat
Used by:
Non-gamblers - experience without conscience
Gamblers - trying to cut down
Gamblers - who can’t access real gambling
Social Gaming & Regulation
• No real link between gamers and cash gamblers…
• ….in regulated markets.
• Social gaming may appeal to gamblers who cannot access legal
gambling opportunities…
• .…and may be creating a hidden generation of problem gamblers.
• Social gaming may continue to appeal to gamblers…
• .…who cannot access legal gambling opportunities or bitcoin/altcoin
gambling sites
Bitcoin Basics
• Created by ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’ ?
• Bitcoin is a crypto-currency based on mathematics and encryption
- not fiat or commodity money – current form is digital
• Bitcoins are mined by solving computational problems (hashes)
• Bitcoin is decentralised – no controlling authority or institution
• The total number of Bitcoins will never exceed 21 million
• To first reward blocks contained 50 BTC the last 0 (c. 2140)
• Other Altcoin includes - Litecoin, Peercoin, Ripple, Sexcoin, etc.
Bitcoin Mining Exercise
• (2) + (2) = ?
• (2 + 2) + (2 x 2) - (2) = ?
• (22 x 2) – (22 - 2) – (10 x 2) = ?
• (2 x 2 x 2 x 2) + (10 – 2 x 2) – ( 22 – 10 – 2) x (2) = ?
• Reward block halves every 210,000 blocks
• From 50 BTC in 2009 to 25 BTC in 2012
• Next halving due in 2016 – some think 2015
Bitcoin – Regulator Challenges
• Bitcoin is just another payment method
$1.00/£1.00/€1.00 v 1.00000000BTC
International centralised currencies e.g. $, £, €, ¥, etc. (1/100 = 0.00 = 2 decimal places)
1 Bitcoin (BTC)
1 mBTC (milli BTC)
1 uBTC (micro BTC)
1 Satoshi
= 1.00000000
= 1/1,000 = 0.001
= 1/1,000,000 = 0.000001
= 1/100,000,000 = 0.00000001
• Costs of software and systems re-configuration to support 2 + decimal places
• Customer education, error and experience
Bitcoin – FX v UX
Bitcoin unit changes and 8 decimal places creates accounting challenges
Difficult to forecast P&L and plan year on year budgets
Difficult to manage liability and liquidity: Ante-post bets and poker tourneys
Acquisition bonuses and promotions: 30 to 90 day lifespan
Affiliate commission against fluctuating currency: risk of negative equity
Needs higher level of customer awareness and diligence – one ‘0’ too many or too less
Bitcoin – Follow the Money
Money In
Money Out
Bitcoin – Source of Funds
Bitcoin – Global Adoption
Some statistics suggests the total number of BTC users = 500,000
• For security many users have multiple wallets to avoid hacks
• Some are ‘curiosity’ users with minimal value and no intent to use
Very low user base = US, China
Bitcoin – Operator Challenges
• Cost of reconfiguring software and systems to support more than 0.00 +
• Cost of maintenance as more Bitcoin units are added to mBTC, uBTC
• FX volatility and impact on liability, bonuses and affiliate commissions
• Difficulty in tracing lost deposits and withdrawals
• Source of funds and financial KYC require new cyber-security skills
• High risk of customer input error (.000) and poor User experience (UX)
Currently cost and risk is greater than revenue and reward
• BTC user base which does not reflect average target customer
How often do you change currency and why?
Interactive, multi-channel & TV
Interactive & Multi-channel
• Bringing land and on-line together
• Video removes location barriers
• Customers sitting in the casino playing with customers sitting at home
Interactive Gaming - Concerns
• Is it the actual customer playing or someone else – how to check
• How old does the player look – under 18s who look older
• Dress code – female dress code, head shot only,
• Inappropriate/offensive gestures, words, conduct and behaviour
Dark Side of Interactive Community:
• Bullying, Stalking, Trolling
• Relationships – Collusion
Game/Play Integrity:
• Customers - Loose play to keep ‘pretty’ players at the table
• Operators – Inciting play by deliberate placement of ‘alluring’ players at tables
• Operators – Taking a stronger ‘sex sells’ approach to VIPs – private tables
Interactive Gaming – Live Dealer
• Special rooms for high rollers & VIPs
• Live streaming from Casinos already happening
Next Generation In-Play Betting – COMING SOON
The end of desktop…
In the next 5 years
90% of industry
growth will be via
Push technology
Targeted marketing based upon
• Customer profile and preference e.g. Man Utd
markets on UEFA games only
• Location and time e.g. customers in Asia before UK
EPL kick-off (cheaper than sponsorship)
• Market & time co-ordinated e.g. all customers at
• Incorporate GPS tracking e.g. promotion + your
nearest shop/casino is
• Push is more cost effective than TV advertising
(half-time also means half-time for viewers)
• Add fingerprint login technology to slide and offer
1 tap betting
• Do existing marketing and advertising regulations
also apply to push technology?
Siri – voice activated search & betting
• Online customers check bets visually – best
process for voice?
• Record keeping – audio files for disputes and
integrity/security investigations
• Rules to prevent inducements to spend more
e.g. would you also like a FGScr bet?
• Is a slurred voice a sign of someone betting
irresponsibly – what action should be taken?
• Do current regulations apply to Siri and voice activated search & betting?
Next Generation In-Play Betting
Augmented Reality
Augmented Reality
Augmented Reality
Approx. $1,500
Gesture-based 3D Augmented Interactive Reality
• Operated via a smart phone
• Headphones and glasses operate together
• Use hand gestures and actions to control screen
• Equivalent to a 26-inch tablet in front of face
• Displays 3D graphics in front of eyes
• Interact with graphics using hands
• Could also be controlled by voice
• $500-$850
Virtual Reality
from Augmented to Virtual Reality
• Full digital replication of the land experience
• Fully immersive – sights, sounds, actions
• Voice activated deposits and interactions
• Full integration land & digital play against customers in the casino from home
• Which regulations will apply offline or online?
Invisibility Cloaks
The Rochester Cloak
John Howell, a professor of physics at the University of
Rochester, has suggested many real life used for this
technology such as letting a surgeon see through his hands,
or a truck driver see his blind spots.
Light Bending – optical camouflage
Digital Metamaterials
The End
Christina Thakor-Rankin
1710 Gaming Ltd

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