Cashless gaming solutions have, arguably, never been more prevalent than they currently are, with a multitude of integrations, particularly across the US, evident during recent months.
Gaming in the age of COVID has certainly been a challenge, at best, with the race to adopt cashless technology, which allows funds to be quickly and safely transferred from smart devices to slots or tables, and back again, following 2020’s earlier retail to digital rush.
Earlier this year the American Gaming Association led calls for a much more rapid shift to cashless solutions across US facilities, with 57 per cent of visitors said to be in favour of such a switch in light of the health pandemic.
The AGA said that enabling the payment choice would not only improve responsible gaming efforts by equipping customers with digital tools to help them monitor their gaming and set limits, but also provide operators, regulators, and law enforcement increased transparency into matters of anti-money laundering and monitoring of financial transactions.
“Advancing opportunities for digital payments has been one of our top priorities since my first day at the AGA,” commented Bill Miller, AGA president and CEO.
“COVID is accelerating this trend as people view money as dirty and a possible transmission vector”
Manoeuvres earlier in the year also saw the Nevada Gaming Commission green-light a series of amendments, which were designed to ensure an ease of passage for cashless systems. A move that a number of properties have subsequently welcomed.
With all of this in mind CasinoBeats spoke to Matthew Dickson, BitBoss CEO, to delve into whether a translation into cashless casinos, or even cashless gaming on a more broad scale, is on the horizon: “Yes, players are interacting with their money outside the casino in many new ways. Venmo, Zelle Cash App and others are changing how people bank and pay. Nevada recently amended their regulations to allow for cashless gaming.
“Major manufacturers are rolling out their versions of the cashless casino. COVID is accelerating this trend as people view money as dirty and a possible transmission vector.”
Adding on the advantages this would bring: “The advantages of moving to cashless are numerous. Casinos spend a great deal securing cash and stopping fraud involving cash. Cashless apps can help to eliminate the volume of cash transactions in a casino.
“There is also a more complete audit record when cashless apps are used. The flow of funds can be traced from the bank to the player wallet to the casino and back to the bank. As financial transactions become more regulated this will be a big advantage for casinos.”
BitBoss, a gaming company that is leveraging Bitcoin SV blockchain technology to tie the casino world into the online world, emphasises that cashless solutions have the potential to revolutionise the experience for gamers while simplifying operations for casinos, all while fostering a safer casino experience for all.
“Cash is anonymous and it’s hard to track bad behaviour by addicted gamblers”
Looking close into the key issue of fostering a safer environment for players, Dickson elaborated: “I think by and large casinos are very safe spaces. When we talk about safer environments for players we can also mean from a responsible gaming perspective. This is where cashless can really shine.
“Cash is anonymous and it’s hard to track bad behaviour by addicted gamblers. Cashless is quickly evolving to help players self exclude or limit loses. Warnings and notifications become much easier to provide to the customer when their spendable funds are held in a cashless wallet.”
As previously alluded to, BitBoss utilises blockchain technology, Dickson moves on to dissect just how this would help drive a revolutionised gaming experience for players and why it’s crucial in nurturing a new era for the industry: “It helps to understand what blockchain technology was actually created to do. It was the first time you could create trust between two people over the internet without a trusted middleman,” he commented.
“This elimination of the need for a middleman is what makes blockchain so revolutionary for the gaming space. Players are always transferring money from their banks to the casino and then around the casino ecosystem.
“Money transmitters have always been a necessary party to transfer the money from one party to the next. Enter the blockchain. The transfer of value without the need for a trusted middleman. This is what will revolutionise the player experience.
“Casinos can now accept transfers from the player without paying money transmitters 2 per cent to 3 per cent. Players can now seamlessly move money to friends and family while on property without paying high fees.
“Retail shops can avoid credit card processing fees. The players will keep more of their own money and the casinos will offer a better experience. In today’s world it’s all about giving the customer a seamless experience”
To conclude, Dickson brings the conversation full circle, by once again looking at the advantages in tying physical and online casinos: “In today’s world it’s all about giving the customer a seamless experience. A single unifying wallet that allows for the instant low cost transfer of funds to an online sportsbook, online casino or land based casino is what’s needed.
“The customer should have the exact same experience online that they have in the casino. A player who lives in New Jersey but works in New York City can easily visit casinos in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.
“They can may play multiple online properties in various States. Each jurisdiction has it’s own rules and silos. Blockchain can easily track the sources of funds and where they are spent from.
“Multiple crytpo currencies can be created. Say a New York US dollar. You could limit the acceptable properties that currency could be spent at. KYC procedures can be applied on the blockchain to the wallet. This information can be shared for almost no expense between properties without any integration costs. The advantages are almost limitless.”