Mobile effects on the gambling industry

It’s only been 10 years since smartphones came out, but the amount of bets being placed on mobile devices is estimated at over $100 billion. According to PaddyPower, over 90% of industry growth will be on mobile and by next year, account for 40 percent of the total online gambling industry.

Mobile technology is only getting better. Faster connection speeds and devices are allowing more powerful visuals and better experiences. More people are participating, enabling opportunities for new industry players, and new innovative games of chance. New capabilities are improving security both for players and gaming operators, who are better equipped to screen unwanted and ineligible players. For responsible operators, mobile devices are providing ways to safely and securely enable real-time age and identity verification and payment transactions, creating whole new gaming models.

Live Sports Betting

One such innovation that is experiencing rapid growth is live sports betting. While sports has always been a mainstay of gambling —illegal sports betting tops $150 billion in the US each year — the traditional model was about betting on the outcome before the game. Now, with instant communication, sports betting is dynamic and can change on every play. The payoff is instant, ongoing, and with all the technology happening in the background, seamless.

One interesting correlation to keep an eye on is developments in social media. Social media use has exploded along with the popularity of mobile. A big factor in the success of traditional gambling is the social aspect. As mobile is, in effect, the same space for gambling and social, cross-pollination enabling more social games and better distribution through online platforms holds great promise.

Consider fantasy leagues, sport pools and other group gaming. While they have been around for a while, it’s significantly improved with quick checks on the phone and trash-talk messaging. Take that to the next level with augmented reality and whole new technology-driven gaming options and the opportunities are dramatic.

Prediction Markets

Another area of innovation to examine is prediction markets. According to Wikipedia, “prediction markets (also known as predictive markets, information markets, decision markets, idea futures, event derivatives, or virtual markets) are exchange-traded markets created for the purpose of trading the outcome of events.”

How is that similar to gambling? Well, if the prize is money, they face the same legal requirements as other gambling operations. In this era of huge data sets, large networks of users and many unpredictable results, the potential sophistication of new models for gambling is immense.

Real-Time Transactions Require Real-Time Electronic Identity Verification

New technology is not just for games. The mobile device can significantly improve nuts and bolts issues of identity, payments and compliance to deliver a better gaming experience. Developments in fintech and RegTech help ensure that gambling operators can quickly adapt to new laws and regulations, such as the new AMLD 4 requirements in Europe.

To ensure gamers are legally allowed to use a company’s gambling app or mobile site, they need to complete various due diligence checks for each player. They must prove that they are of legal age to gamble. They must prove geographical location to place a bet. They must complete AML/KYC (Anti-Money Laundering/Know Your Customer) checks to ensure they are not laundering money or otherwise engaged in financial crimes.

Trulioo’s GlobalGateway helps companies meet their gambling legislation regulations and compliance requirements for responsible gambling. Some of the benefits of online gambling ID verification include:

  • Improve risk management
  • Ensure age verification for all players
  • Identify potentially fraudulent activity
  • Improve Know-Your-Customer (KYC) procedures
  • Comply with Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulations
  • Improve business rules to ensure regulatory compliance

We’ve recently added identity document verification as an alternative way to our traditional eIDV process to perform these checks; using a phone to take a photo of the actual identity document, then analyzing the photo to determine authenticity and performing AML/KYC checks of the information on the document fulfills most of the compliance requirements.

The speed and ease of onboarding is a major improvement in the customer experience. They can simply take a photo and minutes later be gambling. For gambling companies, they ease the burden of compliance while also reducing the risk of fraud, as they can run sophisticated, automated checks on the identity document to improve authentication.

Payments are also improved by having effective identity verification in place. Accepting money and making payouts is much less risky if you have solid confidence that you are dealing with the proper account. Whole new payment models come into play with proper identification, from one-tap payments to accepting Bitcoin. Improving payments is another way for gambling operations to improve their player experience.

It’s an exciting time for mobile gambling operators. Whole, new models of gaming are popping up. Growth is rampant and a new generation is comfortable with all things mobile. Technology is improving all aspects of the experience, from graphics to onboarding, interactions to payments. Experiment with new models but don’t bet against proper compliance; make sure you have the systems in place to bring new customers onboard quickly, easily and in full compliance.

To learn more about how online gaming operators can protect against fraud, identity theft, and money laundering, download our product sheet.