After Facebook announced Instant Games, allowing third-party developers to deliver content directly to social network users, many Western tech giants took up the initiative. With its release of iOS 11, Apple made moves to bite off a piece of the hybrid messaging pie by introducing a completely overhauled version of iMessage, letting Apple users play games with their contacts while in a conversation, alongside sending new emoji, stickers and animated messages. How does it all work? How to Integrate Online Gambling into iMessage and Have the Upper Hand.

The iOS 11 update brings the App Store directly into the iMessage interface, becoming an essential part of the overall system. As of now, there’re a bevy of of applications to be downloaded – from photo filters and sticker packs to casino games and other time-fillers. What’s in there for you?

First and foremost, iMessage applications fall into the hybrid messaging format, which is a tried-and-true way of earning $$$ millions, as seen on WeChat by Tencent and LINE by Line Corp., earning their respective companies $200 and $700 million dollars in 2016 respectively. In other words, hybrid messaging is a new market, just waiting to be explored and mined..

This is Why Mobile Game Development and iMessage is The Perfect Match

Most iMessage games are turned-based in nature. While chatting with a contact, the two of you may share a game of cards, checkers, or snooker without having to leave the conversation. These quick, easy, exciting, and swift mechanics will keep users glued to the screen for hours, making iMessage games an opportunity to explore in the nearest future, while there’re still few serious players in the field.

What makes mobile and iMessage games so similar? Both camps are addictive, ‘sticky’, and simple by design. No serious development effort is needed, while few product iterations are required. But the key word here is ‘addictive’. Why is that, exactly? Because poker, roulette and blackjack are naturally additive experiences!

Head Start For Casino Games

One of the difficulties developers face with iMessage is finding out placement tactics which work best. It has been already noted that the hybrid messaging market is a relatively new one, with plenty of unknowns to be worked out. What works best? There’s one thing for sure – in terms of porting to social platforms casino games seem to show the most promise. Poker, roulette, slots – effective gaming mechanics that have already been studied, implemented and tested. All you have to do is adapt them to the needs of iMessage users.

How to Integrate Online Gambling into iMessage and Have the Upper Hand

Everyone knows how to play cards or spin a reel. When a fancy platformer type game is too complex for a game played while chatting with a friend, good-old cards will always find a way into the hearts and minds of Apple fans.

As of today, casino game apps have little-to-no presence in the iMessage App Store. In fact, a potential user interested in playing a game of chance with a friend can choose poker only. No roulette, slots, or even baccarat are currently available. What makes it even worse for a gambling fan, poker games are presented by either GamePigeon, which is a blended mix of several titles including poker, or such poor apps as this one.

In other words, with few poker games for iMessage currently available, the next company to release a proper casino game could make a killing. Since the launch of the App Store, Apple has paid $50 billion out to developers. Given iMessage games are lightweight and fast-to-build, this is quite a sweet spot for mobile casino game developers.

New iMessage App Development Framework

To start working on your first iMessage application, you should get the latest versions of iOS and Xcode. For those who’ve been developing on iOS for some time, there will be nothing new. However, to streamline an iMessage app, you have to master the new class-based framework released with iOS 11 – Messages Framework. It’s an add-in to the native iOS development environment which uses App Extension technology to give applications the structure of an extension, being a prerequisite for an app to become available in the iMessage App Store.

5 Cornerstones of a Successful iMessage Game

Everyone knows that Apple has a pretty strict policy regarding applications. Content quality, technical performance and legal aspects, all have to be taken into consideration, especially when a casino game is being considered. That’s why you have to make sure the future app lives up to these 5 pillars of developing a consistent iMessage app.

  • Asynchronous gameplay – The very nature of iMessage games is turn-based. With this in mind, your game has to be able to withstand long pauses between players making a move;
  • Social interaction – Like all successful mobile games, your app has to offer rich social features to keep long-term retention strong. Letting players communicate in-between moves or actions is essential as well;
  • Competition – Where there’s competition, there’s excitement. And where there’s excitement, there’s a game of chance, gambling, fire in the belly. Start with a simple PvP experience to test the waters and don’t forget about the Leadership board and User rankings to spur users to play on;
  • Collaboration – Unlike competitive games where users challenge one another, collaborative games offer the opposite experience. In collaboration, you and your friends fulfill team goals set by the app;
  • Friendliness – Most guidelines recommend making iMessage apps as friendly as possible, including content, interface, calls to action, etc..  

Drawbacks to Overcome

When porting poker games and slots to the iMessage platform, one of the questions to answer is how will you monetize the entire thing in the first place? Judging from what Apple officials say, all the core iTunes monetization principles (purchase, freemium, subscription) will be available in the framework of iMessage app development as well. However, there’s a serious problem left to address.

In 2016, The List of Most Grossing iMessage Apps was revealed. Among 200 most profitable applications, 78% were… 2D/3D art sticker packs. In other words, 158 of the highest grossing iMessage applications are simple stickers ($0.99 per pack). And only 42 bestselling apps belong to the categories we’re interested in – Entertainment and Games. Anyway, food for thought.

In conclusion, the iMessage App Store is a promising new revenue channel letting you interact with millions of casino fans on a daily basis. On the plus side, there’re a couple decent poker games available, meaning Apple is relevantly lenient towards casino gaming, which doesn’t require much resource and time to develop. However, on the con side there’s the fact that the serious money is currently being earned via sticker packs used in chat. How to integrate them into games of chance? Whoever finds out will find themselves landing a jackpot.

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Virtual sports are the latest fad in gambling. Thanks to the high influence of technology on the entertainment and outcome of games, virtual sports are one of the most in-demand areas in the gaming industry.

Today, gambling operators (like Betradar) allow betting on the following virtual disciplines: Soccer, Tennis, Motorcycle and automotive racing, Greyhound races, Horse Racing, Speedway, Cycling.

Soccer is an incredibly spectacular and exciting virtual sport

This article reviews the principles of action, future development prospects and challenges of virtual sports.

Virtual Sports: What Influences the Outcome of the Game?

Despite the fact that the principles of betting in this variety of gaming are extremely simple and completely analogous to real sports, the mechanisms influencing the outcome of the game are completely different. In particular, since these sports competitions do not take place in reality, the responsibility for their development is borne by an artificial intellect, which is tuned to observe the rules of the particular sport. On the other hand, all events occurring within the match are under the minimal influence of random factors and are logically justified.

Fortunately the current, main suppliers of virtual sports betting software have studied the portrayed sports thoroughly enough that matches taking place in the virtual world are no different from those occuring in reality, except for their duration. For example, the result of a match can be affected by the parameters of individual players (their speed, strength, physical data, preferred tactics and other parameters specific to the individual sport). As the games are played, all the specified parameters for each virtual player are increased or decreased according to specially devised criteria.

Challenges of Virtual Sports: Who can be Interested in This Kind of Gaming Industry?

One of the main challenges of virtual sports is the fuzzy definition of its target audience. who is interested in this?

First, there are the gamblers who are too impatient to bet on real-life sports (the need to wait any time for the end of a match is too long, etc.) or casino games (the excitement wanes). As practice shows, virtual sports games are exactly where this “intermediate” category of gamblers find their wanted challenges; The matches end much faster than in reality. Betters do not need to wait for the final whistle, and at the same time, they are inspired with genuine sporting excitement since the familiar names of teams and star athletes appear on the screen.

Can the Results in Virtual Sports be Accurately Predicted?

As for the accuracy of crystal balls, it is much easier to predict individual games (here, after all, the human factor is minimized). This is especially true for those types of virtual sports in which only two players participate (tennis, for instance). Assessing and comparing the characteristics of the competitors is not difficult for a child, which means the probability of making a winning bet is notably higher.

Innovations in the development of virtual sports games

However, it is important not to lose sight of sports activities of teams/individual athletes in real life. Because artificial intelligence takes into account this data, the outcome of some controversial matches can be successfully guessed due to the constant monitoring of the progress of the real games.

Virtual Sports in the Gaming Industry: Is this the Future of Gambling?

As the technologies used to create gaming software develop, the prospects for virtual sports in the gaming industry constantly grow. If a few years ago it was just another niche for creating experimental products, nowadays this IT sphere is characterized by high demand and intense competition. In particular, virtual sports are in fifth place in popularity among all types of gambling.

As for the prospects of virtual sports in the gami industry from the developer’s point of view, it is possible to improve this software almost indefinitely starting with graphics and sound improvement and including the integration of machine learning algorithms. Another aspect of these games is their efficiency. Video game publishers are trying to make their products more accessible; any gambler, no matter who they may be, can place bets. For the next couple of years, the vendors of this software are aiming specifically at creating fast, compact and undemanding mobile gaming applications.

Particular attention should also be paid to the attempts of some development companies to move from 2D to 3D graphics. This is an expensive solution requiring the use of modern technologies. For example, in order to maximally, reliably reproduce a match in 3D, special sensors are attached to separate parts of a real player’s body capturing their movements. The high financial investments are justified completely since not even the most talented 3D animator is able to reproduce human body techniques as reliably as motion capture beacons do. If we also take into account that unlike in real-life, in virtual sports, the match background/landscape and appearance of the athletes can be whatever is truly impressive to active watchers.

Are Virtual Sports Exciting Enough to Motivate People to Bet Money?

Undoubtedly! The main motive inspiring people to wager on a particular sport is the drive to experience fun and excitement, and not the need to make moolah. That is why many skeptics about virtual sports, complain they are much less exciting and much more predictable. Thus, some of gamblers who are hungry for jazzy experiences probably do not appreciate alternatives to real sports.

Relevance of virtual sports in gambling

In practice, things are somewhat different. The main concern of most players is the athlete or the team they bet on. It does not matter whether the chosen personalities are in-the-flesh or not. Both real and virtual games from time to time are accompanied by all sorts of surprises ranging from ordinary injuries to conflict situations (fights) on the playing field. The tension for those who make bets is the same because there is real money at stake, and in exactly the same way, the results of the match are recognized as fair.

Can Virtual Sports Threaten Their Real Prototypes in the Gambling Industry?

Let us sum up the prospective future of virtual sports. Of course, as the technologists responsible for the similarity of virtual games to reality evolution, we believe the number of gamblers who have chosen virtual sports as their main niche for betting will grow exponentially.

The quality of sounds and graphics, the dynamism of the events developing on the playing field, as well as the logical behavior of virtual athletes will be responsible for the “acuity” of the sensations experienced by gamblers. Moreover, it is virtual sports that can “quench” the thirst for adrenaline for those who are in constant motiom and lack the opportunity to devote hours or days tracking real games.

The Ways Meta Gameplay Can Improve Conversions

The first key point is focused on the involvement of the so-called millennial generation – the young gamblers that are not fond of the standard mechanics but enjoy playing the current mechanics of Match Three platforms, and similar. These games are something that they grew up on and highly enjoy. Accordingly, the 70-s and 80-s generation, that are the current key casino audience grew p on Blackjack and Hold’em Poker as there was no Xbox, PlayStation or normal PC games that we are used to right now.

Accordingly, the main advantage and conversion point of younger players lays in the addition of advanced gaming mechanics in casinos and new ways of attracting them to a casino environment. And there is no other way. The millennial generation cannot be attracted through the standard slots even if you spend a lot of money on promoting them.

User Privacy Concerns in Casinos

The framework of online privacy is, of course, fragile. In a rush to get more data on users, their habits likes and dislikes some may try and even violate these limits.

“The main idea is that in the social, mobile and GameDev, in general, we witness a serious and powerful work aimed at deciphering the users.”, says Max Illyashenko, Engineering Director at Innovecs.

Every product company is analyzing their users from every angle through a very powerful analytics system. It is hard to compare with other industries and market segments, but it seems, that the gambling and gaming business possesses and constantly develops one of the most powerful analytics systems as the data are collected virtually on everything.


Social Media As Key Tool to Casino Customer Segmentation

Even the standard information provided by the Facebook platform is more than enough, regarding assessing social media users and attracting them. There is quite a lot of information with which you could work to attract gamblers. That is, your company is given the opportunity to build a complete portrait of your players, the average casino player, in principle. If it is not too much of a bother, you can do precise segmentation and learn a lot about your clients: who is playing what kind of games, who is paying more, how and when they pay to gamble, what gambling platforms they prefer, and more.  From the viewpoint of a casino, you can get to know absolutely everything about gamblers.

Moreover, you can learn about them a lot of things: what they read, watch, what are their favorite action heroes and so on. Therefore, you can a form a psychological profile of your end user and offer your trusted gaming software development team a clear-cut picture of what should be in the game to attract players. In accordance with the psychological profile of gamblers, Innovecs has been developing a number of games that are popular with averages users through pinpointing the setting, coming up with new mechanics and so on.

If your audience is women over the age of 40, then, of course, you’re not going to offer them some kind of shooters or action games, and you will offer them games similar to Match Three or Happy Farm. If on the contrary, your audience is mainly teenagers and males, then you will offer shooters and racing add-ons in your casino gambling environment. That’s the most important issue.

Not Understanding What Meta Gameplay Features Customers Want Harms Business

In the social market, it is vital for the gambling business to know its users and for this purpose exist the so-called “producer” companies that have large shares of the mobile and social market, and that clearly understand what gamblers want to play. Knowing what types of gambling activities and met game paly features will go through and will pay off, and how well it will all work down to the smallest detail is invaluable. Therefore, entering the social media is quite beneficial if you can employ an outsourcing company that can do a qualitative analysis, construct a development plan, a business plan for new game types.

Unfortunately, many outsourcing companies that are willing to take the task don’t even ask about clients, and simply draw elaborate designs without much interest in what the project is aimed at. It is vital to have an understanding that there are big differences according to the region, country, age, gender and other points.

“At Innovecs we are partners and always clarify and ask the client the direction they are aiming at. We can provide that as many of the company’s employees have experience in product companies before joining Innovecs outsourcing team”, states Sergiy Khandogin, COO at Innovecs.

For example, if a gambling business decides to partner up with an Eastern European software development outsourcing company and would like to develop games for the Asian market, it is vital to have points of contact and reference in Asia to pinpoint the preferences of local gamblers. For example, zombies or monster in meta gameplay features of game graphics might pass in the US, but they will be offensive in Asia. Indeed, finding a consultant/expert from the target market will help to create a high-quality product.

Summary

Right now if you want to attract people to your browser-based casino platform, you can simply search for such user requests in Google Analytics. But the cost per click starts at $100. And that entails that you get a paying customer, but you still must recoup the mentioned $100 you spent on that user and making money this way may not be viable. The reason is that after getting the customer, it’s a matter of great gaming mechanics and involvement in the game to keep the customer active. Adding social elements and meta gameplay features for new gamblers is a key source of attracting players. Since attracting real money gamblers is very expensive, they are in great demand, and there is only a limited number of them in regions of the world. Accordingly, there are two options that need to be combined for a successful game launch in online gambling: you have to go even further into the social media sphere to publicize your games, and search for the new meta gameplay features to create additional competition and decrease the marketing costs needed to attract players.

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Online gambling has become an incredibly popular alternative to going out to casinos or making trips to the races. These days you can easily place small or large bets on quite a lot of different things such as sports, card games, and even e-sports. Although online gambling is considered illegal in some countries due to its addictive nature and propensity to destroy lives, it’s still perceived to be a rewarding past-time for some and a profitable source of income in the field of gambling development outsourcing.

Betting and gambling online once relied solely on cold hard funds of those placing the bets. However, with the relatively recent introduction of Bitcoin, the way players can place their bets has drastically changed. Now you no longer need to tap into your bank accounts, provide personal information for payments or wait long periods of time to get your payouts. Bitcoin has essentially wiped out the need for a lot of these processes which has in turn been a way to deliver disruptive solutions using Bitcoin.

Bitcoin was first introduced by Satoshi Nakamoto in October of 2008 to process peer to peer transactions without having to use an intermediary. The transactions go through network nodes to be verified and get recorded in what is known as a ‘blockchain.’ Get to know more about the Innovecs’ expertise in the blockchain.

A Bitcoin is able to be digitally stored on a person’s computer. This makes it act like a real currency that can be stolen, lost or destroyed. The price of a Bitcoin varies as it all depends on supply and demand, like when you invest in shares or products.

Although there were other cryptocurrencies present before Bitcoin, Bitcoin is generally referred to as the first of its kind. However, it would be more accurate to say that Bitcoin is the first decentralized digital currency. Despite all of this, Bitcoin is the leader of cryptocurrencies in regards to its total market value.

Being used as a solution for eCommerce and retail businesses, Bitcoin has also opened the market in blockchain application development. A blockchain application is a public ledger to show all Bitcoin transactions to have been executed. Bitcoin has also been pounced upon by criminal organizations which has heavily attracted the interest of law enforcement, financial regulators, and legislative bodies, though officials in some countries like the United States recognize that Bitcoin can also be used for totally legitimate financial services.

With the rise in popularity of Bitcoin, it’s not surprising that it has become a new payment option when thinking about top-notch gambling development expertise. The impact this has had on online gambling, and the rise in gambling development outsourcing is that since 2016, Bitcoin has needed to be integrated into the traditional online gambling industry. Of course, since the creation of Bitcoin, there have always been gambling websites that have accepted Bitcoin as payment, but as of 2016, it has become more widely regarded as a way for players to make deposits and receive payouts. Because of the large amount of attention Bitcoin receives, the online gambling industry are starting to see Bitcoin as a requirement instead of an option.

At the moment, in online gambling there is a worry that Bitcoin will continue to take it’s permanent place across the entire online gambling industry. This ideology also carries a benefit to the online gambling industry, as the role of gaming regulators could eventually become obsolete seeing as the blockchain technology rooted into Bitcoin may very well liberate gambling websites from the clutches of anti-competitive dictates of payment blocking set in place by certain governments.

In the UK, the UK Gambling Commission has already made updates to their License Conditions, and Codes of Practice to state Bitcoin is an accepted payment option for licensees. But along with that came a provision that requires licensees to put in place procedures that would prevent Bitcoin being used a money laundering process.

With the implementation of Bitcoin in the online gambling industry came the use of this digital currency as a way for affiliates to receive payouts. Networks of online gambling affiliates are pushing the use of Bitcoin because of difficult issues that arise when using the traditional banking system to make and receive payments. Some affiliate networks of online gambling make Bitcoin the only way to receive payments.

Some of the key features brought up that show how considerable Bitcoin is are:

  • Zero restrictions on the amount of Bitcoin that can be sent
  • Personal information isn’t a requirement for payments
  • Payouts can be processed within the hour
  • The minimum payment threshold can be lowered to $10

Even though the personal information isn’t a requirement, some online gambling websites have implemented a need for a new Bitcoin address to protect privacy for both.

Summary

Bitcoin has rapidly become a very quick and cost-effective way to process payouts for both affiliates and players. However, not all affiliate networks have made the use of payments to be accepted via Bitcoin to be mandatory. Instead, they’ve created rewarding incentives to switch to the popular P2P cryptocurrency. For example, a 10 percent bonus for those who receive payouts via Bitcoin instead of traditional payment methods.

With the amount of attention, Bitcoin is receiving from the online gambling industry, it certainly shows how much of an inconvenience it is to go through traditional banking methods. But also, those with top-notch gambling development expertise will certainly be feeling the pressure of getting around the Bitcoin implementation that does currently deliver disruptive solutions using Bitcoin. Because Bitcoin is perceived a solution for eCommerce and retail businesses, more people use them meaning more people will have the desire to use them when it comes to online gambling so it looks like the rise of Bitcoin is unavoidable.

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Crosslinking is at work within many gaming sub-industries: in the social and mobile, and in the regular gaming sphere. It can be done via crosspromotion that is a well-developed industry standard. Any indie developer, or any gaming company that has a number of readily available games, does cross-promotion between their games. And this entails crosslinking of real money games with social games to boost conversions in both.

Crosslinking via introduction of similar features

As mentioned in our previous article on “Social casino game trends”, crosslinking can be done via the introduction of features that are customary to real money games into the social gaming sphere. The great example is a recent introduction of live dealers in online card games in social games to imitate the feel of a real casino and the real presence. It is an option with lots of potential, as social casino gamers are paying on equal terms as the real money gamblers, just in different ways.

PokerStars

PokerStars as Great Example of Real Money and Social Gambling Crosslinking

PokerStars is a top online platform to play poker for fun and real money. Accordingly, all that relates to real money play requires a strong regulatory policy that it had issues with. Not so long ago all online poker was banned in the US, and the company had to pay hefty fines to avoid litigation. Nevertheless, after this slump, the company was able to reinstate itself as a leader while putting an emphasis on social gambling in the lucrative countries where the legislation did not allow for real money stakes.

To reenter the real money gambling, PokerStars has to regulate the mechanisms, the probability of winning, as well as its back-end and front-end processes, and check the clients’ eligibility to gamble. All of this takes a bunch of tests, and everything has to be documented. Having done that the social and real money play is very similar in its essence and allows for a seamless crosslinking. And with the recent introduction of BetStars and PokerStars Casino, the company took crosslinking to a whole new level, as they have not only introduced sports betting and casino games in one single platform but interconnected both of them with poker experiences.

Crosslinking of Skill-Based Gambling to Be Introduced Across Industry

Interconnection of casino mechanics with poker as a skill-based game is the best way to attract millennials and the older generation as well. In most cases, casinos attract females over the age of 35 and the online poker community is a trove of younger under 25 folks who love and have the know-how in skill-based gaming.

Even without taking into account the meta gameplay, the successful introduction of crosslinking of skill-based gambling is a great source of revenue and new software developments. This can be done with the help of industry professional software development outsourcing companies that can introduce new features with ease. You can read the latest whitepaper on gaming and gambling here.

Financial Benefits in New Approaches to Attracting Online Traffic

Gaining traffic for social and real money gambling is though quite different. While most operators do their best to offer a unified platform where people can easily switch between fun and cash gambles, the end goal for many of them is to drive more traffic into the real money gambling.

Indeed, social gaming lets the real-money gambling industry attract new gamers via the social media feed and create a new and less expensive source of traffic that has a high probability of converting into paying customers. Attracting real-money gamblers through the standard advertising and promotion means remains highly competitive and requires a lot of funding that needs to be returned through active gambling and customer retention. This becomes even more complex taking into account the strict winning probabilities that need to be counted in when developing gambling software.  To save costs and keep the quality on par, gambling corporation employs companies like Innovecs to outsourcing software development. Get to know more by following this link.

Moneywise it is clear that attracting social gamblers is much more attractive. But another reason is that with social gambling there is no need to follow strict legal rules as the gamers’ winnings cannot be converted into real money. And by offering the interlinking with real money platform, gambling companies can build on the success of social games and boost the popularity of new game types and get paying customers cheaper. It is better to use such mechanics to attract new customers. Other ones can easily cost $50-100 per user and can be compensated (and that is not always the case) over a longer period of time as the LTV and retention costs should be factored in as well.

casino - real game in card

Legal Woes As a Major Differentiating Factor

The major issue remains: Will the regulatory policy get in the way of real money and social gambling?

Let’s go back to the most important difference between the two. Real money casino games are based on the fact that real money is invested, and users can receive the real money back as winnings. And there is very strong, good quality and elaborated regulatory policy to support this. Although such policies are regional, they are still governed by strict rules and laws. So why is social gambling much more interesting legal-wise? The main positive point is that the regulatory policy is operated on the platform itself. By this, it means that there’s no need to pass some kind of legalization or getting approved by specialized bodies and have in check the probabilities of winning as the prizes have nothing of value, except for the fans.

But the question of supporting legality and strict regulatory policies in crosslinking may still be an issue to some. If a platform has a crosslinking of social and real money and vice versa, the regulatory policies are actually not interchangeable.

The fact is that the operators who provide a link to its real money platform should clearly state that the game is for money and that the platform received all necessary regulatory confirmations and the paperwork is in order. Accordingly, when users come to the platform, their information is recorded, they read and agree to the rules and see a clear difference in the social gaming part of the platform, where all the information needed is first name, email and not much else. This is not a problem, and there is nothing illegal about such crosslinking.

Key takeaways:

  • Crosslinking of social and real money gamblers is worth it as both player groups are well-paying;
  • PokerStars is a great example of crosslinking and cross-promotion between social and real money gaming and gambling on one unified platform;
  • Attracting real money gamblers via social gaming is more cost-effective compared to standard advertising models;
  • Legal issues are not a concern for social gamblers which makes this niche more lucrative.

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Discover Latest Social Casino Games Trends 

Social casino gambling grew into a $3.4 bln industry in 2016. In 2017 the market situation will only improve with $4.4 bln revenue to be expected, according to the data from Eilers Research. The overall gambling market is set to reach $91 bln, and the 4 percent social casino market share is a lucrative piece of the pie. Getting to know the latest trends for this year will help direct your investment goals, especially taking into account the software outsourcing market that is there to help gambling businesses reach out to new players on a short time-frame and budget.

Addition of skill-based gaming mechanics

Addition of skill-based gaming mechanics

The first place in social casino games trends takes the introduction of skill based game mechanics. It helps attract the millennial generation that focuses on skill gaming like e-sports, and daily fantasy sports betting, as well as the older customers that enjoy random chance games and would like to experience the social casino games. This combination lets gambling companies provide attractive features to both generations and help improve revenue. Such route provides a firm way to expand the demographics of social casino games in 2017 and onwards. We talked a lot about this issue in detail in our previous article “VR is a smart choice for gambling industry”, which we highly recommend you to advise.

Live dealer introduction to imitate real money casino

Live dealer introduction to imitate real money casino

Another point is the potential addition of live dealer gambling. This can help imitate the feel of a real casino, the real presence in gambling. It is an option with lots of potential as the live dealer feature has been reserved for high-end paying customers in real-money online gambling and its introduction to the social gambling may attract a large audience.

But it’s social casino gambling, and you may wonder if this option is too expensive to maintain. Many businesses that would like to enter the social casino industry misunderstand the value of customers. In reality, it has a fairly large and paying audience, which is willing to spend money but in a different way.

Creating a flow of money through traffic procurement

According to SuperData Research, the average age and gender of social casino gamblers is 36-41 years, and over 72% of it is comprised of females. And the younger auditorium is more attracted to mobile devices, and it is paying on average 4-10% more than the desktop gamers.

The prime sources of revenue with social gaming is in-app purchases and in-game advertising. It is clear that today the social casino games have great opportunities for creating a flow of money through traffic procurement and advertising. This traffic is quite versatile, and engagement can be generated both on the desktop and mobile casino versions of the game.

Streams as a key way to attract new gamblers

From the point of view of attracting new gamers to the social mobile casino, there will be even more marketing resources spent. Live streams, YouTube channel, Instagram videos, for example, are among the key resources. These efforts should be coupled with the ability to install the game on mobile, or social media platform. The options are pretty endless.

The main reason for streams to rival traditional sources of traffic purchasing is because gambling players traffic is quite expensive to get and the cost can sometimes reach totally insane dimensions. And in order to reduce these costs, online social gambling businesses will continue to look for opportunities to generate traffic via new ways, like streams.

social casino games

The Middle East as a key growth market for social casinos

Online social casinos in the Middle Eastern market are starting to get traction, although, taking into account the cultural specifics, real-money gambling has not always been welcome there. But social casino gambling is a very promising direction as it does not require direct money wagering. To get a firm footing in this market gambling companies need to develop some additional casino game mechanics that are popular there.

The legislation regarding the social casinos is not as strict there, and this adds another layer of benefit, as it attracts those real-money gamblers that have no option but to play social due to strict government rules.

Cross-linking of real money and social gambling

The combination of real-money gambling and social gambling is on the rise. Operators in the market of real money online casinos have many ways to generate paying traffic, but these resources can also be well-spent on social gamers as well. Similarly, social gaming opens up new ways to attract customers via social media platforms, and this will make it possible for gambling operators to create a cyclical traffic, where people playing social casino games will convert to real money players and vice versa.

Therefore, we can expect a potential mixing of user-bases. But to achieve that, companies will have to attract more creative talent to develop software solutions that are attractive to real money players who decide to drop in on the social gambling, for example. Adjusting and adding recognizable templates, promotions and other relevant things, foresees the use of gaming software development outsourcing expertise to go through all of this workload. You can get to know more about gaming software outsourcing by following this link. Another beneficial point in the inter-linking of social and real-money gambling is in-game cross-promotion. This lets companies attract paying customers from various networks, at a lower cost.

Lack of social gambling regulatory policy boosting growth

Real money social casino games are based on the fact that real money is invested, and users can receive real money as their winnings. And there is very strong, good quality and elaborated regulatory policy to support it that includes both regional policies, and the probability of winnings per user. All of this is governed by state rules and laws.

So why is social gambling much more attractive? The main reason is that the regulatory policies it operates under are governed not by countries, but by the platforms themselves. There’s no such thing like needing to adhere to some kind of legalization or getting approved by specialized government bodies on the loss probabilities as the winnings have no real monetary value, except for pleasure for the fans. This means that in the social casino gambling all that you win is purely for fun. It has no financial value – you cannot withdraw any winnings.

Accordingly, it is not regulated. No matter what you do with your game, like dropping or increasing the rate of winnings, neither you nor the player will not lose anything. The only thing that matters is the level of fun from the process – gamers will either like it or on the contrary will not like to play. Therefore, contrary to real money operators there are no real limitations, and this helps boost the introduction of new game types and improve growth like nothing else.

Key takeaways

  • There are seven key trends impacting the social casino business
  • The introduction of new skill-based features is only a matter of time
  • Live dealers in social casino to attract new customers
  • Social casino gamers are paying through in-app purchases and in-game advertising
  • Online streams to become a cheaper way to attract traffic
  • Middles East is becoming a major player in social casino gambling
  • Inter-connection of social and real-money online gambling is becoming even stronger
  • Absence of social gaming regulations helps companies introduce new games faster

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Most up-and-coming concepts like Virtual Reality (VR) have mixed reviews. People either admire it or are uncertain about its future. But still, it can’t be ignored as it is a step forward and opens up many new and exciting opportunities. Add gambling to the industries it can be used at as virtual reality gambling is already bringing in rewards to early investors.

Gambling Industry Development

Gambling Industry Development. Reaching out to VR to Continue Growth

VR is the latest technological breakthrough to make online casinos realistic. 20 years ago we saw the first attempts at making people enjoy a casino in the comfort of their homes. But the tools and ability weren’t there yet, and it all came down to poor quality slots with terrible graphics or card games with the minimal setting. And now we can get a fully immersive experience, still at a high cost, though, full of crystal clear 3D image sharpness and enjoy quality casino gaming. The images and sounds are in perfect harmony, and software developers and designers did their best to provide us early on with gambling animations like in the best Pixar films.

For those who prefer 100% life-like experiences, online gambling sites already offer live casino features, where you can play Baccarat or Blackjack while interacting with a real dealer in a casino setting. This setting can be an optimal choice to be taken advantage of in VR.  Combining social elements with gambling is vital to attracting millennials and keep the older generation happy while spinning the virtual wheel. We’ve talked about the importance of immersion of social elements into Virtual Reality casinos with leading specialists in gaming and gambling. Feel free to get to know about this issue in depth in our latest whitepaper.

Of course, VR is still relatively in its infancy, and many obstacles are about to come with regards to making it more user-friendly and affordable, like a smartphone, to the general audience. But in this tech world, things change rapidly, and online gambling is at the tip of it all. Taking into account how lucrative and competitive the gambling market is, the companies that embrace innovation and creative potential of Virtual Reality can take a large chunk from the industry market leaders as the VR application is endless, especially in online gambling.

Gambling VR Presented to Large Audiences

As a matter of fact, Innovecs recently participated at ICE Totally Gaming, Europe’s premier gambling conference, were the CEO presented the VR casino gambling tech. VR also made it into other gaming events where multiple companies shared latest developments in VR technology and provided unique virtual reality casino gaming experiences for all to enjoy.

“The one industry that has the most potential by getting ‘VRfied’ is the gambling industry. Top gambling corporations are going to employ software development outsourcing companies to create VR casino environments for them as this sub-industry is going to make a lot of money in 3 to 5-year term”, believes Alex Lutskiy, Co-founders, and CEO of Innovecs.

The online gambling world is not standing still, and slot machines are becoming add new features, advanced graphics, meta-game features, pre-game movie sequences and use famous brand names in the game to take your past time to a new level. But as of now, it seems to have hit the ceiling and to progress further the industry needs VR tech.  The infrastructure to provide users with VR gambling experiences already exists within Innovecs, and we are ready to provide the power for major operators to have VR as the part of their operations.

To support the claim, technology giants like Samsung and Facebook have been active in 2016 providing mobile VR experiences. They are betting on a mobile market that is cheaper to produce, though it lacks true VR capabilities.  And we believe that VR gambling will focus on complete and immersive casino experience and the technology will follow suit in the nearest time.

Investment in VR Gambling Industry. Growth Prognosis at least 800% by 2021

Driven by ‘high rollers’ the amount of bets placed using VR this year is $58.5 million, so the potential growth is massive. Even smaller companies focus on investing in VR. A Japan-based COLOPL has been developing a number of solid games in VR and in early 2017 decided to create a $50 million fund aimed at investing in VR game development.

According to Juniper report, the VR hardware revenues in 2016 was $5 bln, and it came from VR headsets, accessories, cameras and other accessories bought by mostly well-off gamers. By 2012 the market would be over $50 billion. And that would be achieved by decreasing the cost of manufacturing, increasing the quality of hardware and reaching a broader audience.

Annual Unit Sales of Consumer Virtual Reality Devices

VR Tech Advancement

The only obstacle to the rise of high-quality VR gambling is the high cost of devices, therefore, the user-base is still quite limited. Thanks to large investments we expect this issue to be solved in a medium-term perspective.

Presently, the VR gamblers consist of players with basic smartphone-based headsets (Samsung Gear), and advanced computer-dependent VR (Oculus Rift). With the tech advancement, a niche clientele of high-rollers will be firmly established that would enjoy mobility and high-usability at the same time.

Conclusion

There are various industries that are willing to take the lead in adopting VR in their services. This, consequently, leads to higher overall investments in VR technology development and the gaming and gambling industry will take a major part in it to create a critical mass of users. Of course, for VR still has a long way to go to revolutionize the gambling industry truly, those willing to join the industry should lay out the framework early on to make out the most of what VR has to offer. This is probably the biggest opportunity since the launch of iPhone.

So far VR has affected a number of industries, and millions of people experienced it firsthand, with the primary focus on the entertainment. It is for you to choose if your company is among the innovators who are willing to take the risk and adopt new VR ideas, or among the second fastest businesses who are the early adopters. And, finally, you can be in late majority and join the laggards, who missed out on investing in VR gambling.

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Mobile game development will continue to grow in 2017, and this entails the fantasy sports market growth as well. Fantasy sports games allow players to control and manage fantasy teams that reflect the real-life performance of the athletes they choose. These games fuel the mind and give players a rush of adrenaline as well as instant gratification. Fantasy sports games have become extremely popular within a short period of time. Here are some of the trends to look forward to in the world of fantasy sports.

Fantasy

Growth of Daily Fantasy Sports               

Advanced varieties of fantasy sports such as Daily Fantasy Sports will most likely allow the market to grow further in the future. Daily Fantasy Sports is a subdivision in the fantasy sports industry. Traditional fantasy sports require team owners to play with the same group of players throughout the entire seasons. DFS games, however, allows participants to change their players and play several games every day.

Daily Fantasy Sports websites are becoming more popular, and one of the reasons for its popularity is the fact that they create more fan engagement and get more attention on websites and broadcast for a longer period of time.

However, this also means that DFS websites should think mobile first and consider porting to mobile platforms. Fantasy players are using their mobile phones to play their favorite games, and DFS websites should cater to this need. Simplifying how players use DFS websites or streamlining the games themselves might be the future of the fantasy sports market.

Some of the most popular websites that offer Daily Fantasy Sports are DraftDay, DraftKings, FanDuel, and Victive. Daily Fantasy Sports also allow players to filter out injured players, something that traditional fantasy sports don’t offer. This is also one of the reasons for the growing popularity of the industry among fans. However, just like traditional fantasy sports, players are required to pay to enter. This can be seen as gambling by other people. DFS groups refer to these payments as fees, but players joining these groups often see it as a wager or bet.

Fantasy sports have a large impact on how people perceive sports. Television channels were made to let fans get immediate access to all scoring plays. Some people even spend a large amount of money on fantasy sports related products. So, it is not really surprising that Daily Fantasy Sports have become very popular within a short period of time.  The instant satisfaction of winning in DFS games is something that season-long fantasy leagues cannot give. Players are also provided with a chance to restart every week. The large cash prizes that await players are another driving force of its popularity.

Traditional fantasy sports leagues require team owners to create a team, change their roster throughout the season and hope that they can win the league’s championship. This can be a problem for many people as it requires a lot of work and patience and they may not even get what they’re hoping at the end of it. With Daily Fantasy Sports, team owners can determine their success or failure in just a few days.  If there’s an underperforming star player or the fantasy player is injured, the fantasy season can be over fast. With Daily Fantasy Sports, team owners can create a new team every week. Innovecs recently helped a leading operator of connected entertainment experiences to develop hit games based on some of the world’s most popular and iconic properties.

However, while the DFS industry has experienced a large amount of growth within a short period, there are questions about its sustainability. The truth is that there’s only one major thing that may hinder the growth of the DFS industry – legal issues. In some states, there are laws that either outlaw or restrict paid fantasy sports. DFS providers need to adhere to strict stipulations for their games to remain classified as fantasy games. However, from a legal perspective, fantasy sports games are defined by law as a game of skill. This makes DFS a totally legal industry. With the rapid growth of DFS, it would not be surprising to see it rivaling casino games and turning into a billion-dollar industry in the years to come.

Fantasy Sports Apps

App developers are aiming to make playing fantasy sports on mobile devices easier. Innovecs software development outsourcing expertise in fantast sports apps development is unparalleled. Get to know more about how Innovecs Gaming can boost Fantasy Sports engagement. This means that gaming platforms development will only get better and players can expect improved visual effects, virtual reality, and animation services. Serious fantasy sports players want to get the latest news about injuries and updates. Fantasy sports apps can help keep them informed throughout the game.

Logos

Investing in Advertising

Many people still watch television for entertainment. TW viewer information has allowed advertisers to precisely measure the TV watching habits of their target customers. DraftKings and FanDuel were able to gain hundreds of millions through strategic advertisement, and venture investors are expected to pay for a lot of targeted television advertisements to improve their brand visibility and market presence.

More Acquisitions and Mergers

Some big changes will happen in the fantasy sports industry over the next few years. Fantasy sports providers will continue to improve their market potential and presence through acquisitions and mergers. A lot of providers are also expected to get domestic and small suppliers to boost their market share to help them improve their market outreach as well as distribution channels. These acquisitions and mergers are expected to help fantasy sports providers improve their revenue and customer base.

The Global Fantasy Sports Market has a projected CAGR of 10.32% from 2014 to 2019, so it’s expected to continue growing in the future. North America holds the largest market share by far, followed by Europe. In terms of user base, the fastest growing markets are the APAC region and Latin America.

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Introduction

Everyday, VR technology becomes more of a household name. Despite the fact that its products now have no more than 1% of the total  game development outsourcing market, we see new, higher usability devices hitting the market. If you want an example, look at Razer and FOVE. Moreover, there is nothing to prevent ‘established’ names like Oculus Rift and HTC Vive 2 from offering new generation augmented reality & virtual reality technology soon. This, in turn, inevitably cuts costs, provides higher usability, and excites minds with outstanding immersive experiences. That means, more prospects are open to VR gaming and gambling, and someone needs to fill this industry gap asap.

Gaming & Gambling Industry and VR Era

Game outsourcing prospects are more or less clear: virtual reality products already exist and evolve despite current hefty costs and device imperfections. As for the gambling industry, according to Doug Dyer, Innovecs VP of Gaming, “This tech [VR] will become handy and comfortable to be used for virtual casino travel or to play slots.” Recent trends show the goal of virtual reality & augmented reality is to run applications on high usability devices with prices comparable to the smartphone’s cost. In this case, these companies are predicted to dominate an industry that is already working on their virtual reality products and developments.

What will you find inside

  1. Future of VR in gaming & gambling industry. Does virtual reality have a future, or is it just hype? Look at the purchase statistics and a poll to see what customers really need from VR.
  2. Implementation issues of gambling in VR. What does VR have to do with gambling? It seems these two are too different. However, experts claim VR can attract the younger generation to gambling.
  3. Games and gambling to dominate VR. Games are known as the key to opening up new technology boundaries. With this expansion, new application forms should appear and change the game development world.
  4. The User Base and Financial Stance. Thinking of outsourcing game development? Get to know your products’ users as well as the financial aspects of building an application via stats and charts.
  5. Beyond the gaming hype. What is the driving force behind the VR outsourcing market and are there real chances for virtual & augmented reality to shine? Read about why Playstation VR is to become mainstream.

Want to know more? Immerse in VR development while reading this paper.