The last 15 years or so has seen the emergence of iGaming as one of the fastest-growing industry on the planet. By the end of 2016, the iGaming industry was worth approximately US$41.78 billion, and that’s set to grow twofold to about US$100 billion by 2024. This is according to Transparency Market Research (TRM), a firm that specializes in research trends.
Part of the reason for this growth is the fast-paced rate of technological advancements as well as the recent culture of mergers and acquisition that has characterized the last five years of internet operations. Despite many skirmishes with various governmental authorities worldwide, this industry has proven that it’s truly a bubble that won’t bust!
What Exactly is iGaming?
Simply put, iGaming (or online gaming) is playing or betting on the outcome of a game or event via the internet. iGaming activities include, but not limited to, sports betting – like NFL wagering – online casino betting, poker betting, or online video gaming, etc.…but the biggest share of this industry is made up of sports betting and casino games.
While iGaming hubs are dotted everywhere around the world, the most popular are based in Malta (an archipelago in the central Mediterranean) and Gibraltar in the U.K. When you look at the magnitude of the global gaming industry, it’s no surprise that online gaming is encroaching the business market all over the world. The industry, in terms of market size and revenue generation, is at par with film and music industries, if not better.
What’s the Buzz about iGaming?
The general consensus is that the iGaming industry will remain the most significant area of the gaming industry in the coming years. This tech-savvy generation of punters and gamers want a user-friendly proposition that makes it easy and convenient for them to enjoy gaming wherever, whenever!
For online gaming operators, the challenge has always been to attempt to replicate the environment of brick and mortar casinos, while delivering even something inimitable with added value. It may seem pretty clear-cut, but the better the technology and innovation, the better the gaming experience.
As innovation and mobile technology improve, accessibility and creativity also improve. This makes iGaming even more appealing, with mobile gaming particularly becoming the fastest growing platform in the industry, making up approximately 45% of the global gaming market.
Gaming is increasingly making a successful transition from console to mobile in the past few years, coinciding with the fact that more people than ever now own an Internet-compatible mobile device. It is estimated that an average person spends more than 24 hours a week on their phones, twice as long as ten years ago. Other estimates claim that ever one in five persons spend more than 40 hours a week on the internet.
This case is even more intense in online gamers where advanced mobile technology offers better themes, graphics, pictures, and soundtracks that make iGaming even more appealing than traditional land-based and PC gaming. The added value, especially in the case of sports and online casino betting, comes with the repertoire of attractive bonuses and promotions that trumps any loyalty packages offered by the land-based casinos.
What Are the Current and Future iGaming Trends?
To catch up with gamers’ rising savvy, software providers and gaming operators are getting more and more creative to beat the ever-increasing competition in the market. At present, players are introduced to various customizations in games coupled with variety and multiplicity of gaming products.
For example, there’s a profusion of slots in the market with varied customization in themes, stories, pictures, gameplay, soundtracks, and more. This brings a whole list of games, including thrillers, adventures, puzzles, arcade, actions, animations, and more. The same can be said of table games with games such as Blackjack, Roulette, Poker, and Baccarat evolving into many variations.
The future sets to be intertwined with other developing technologies such as digital currencies and their underlying technology, blockchain. According to Bitcoin news, iGaming platforms are progressively adopting cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, and BitcoinCash as viable (and the most prompt) payment methods.
There’s a general thought that blockchain technology will propel the next phase of the evolution of iGaming. Due to Blockchains problem-solving capabilities, Blockchain casinos are actually increasing in popularity as the said future beckons.
Is this the Future of Gaming?
Pretty much. Gone are the days where gamers had to make long trips to brick and mortar casinos to play the 21. The days of filling out a slip in depressing betting shops are also far gone. You don’t also need to spend a rainy day to venture on a horseracing game!
Thanks to iGaming (and the Internet of Things), gaming and betting aficionados can plunge into whatever game that satiates their thirst at the comfort of their sofas. The inevitable truth is that the games will only get better, the platforms will get even more space-age, and the future is without-a-doubt bright for iGaming fanatics!