Physical and online gaming will never be the same after operations resume post-COVID-19

The last few years have seen emerging technologies gradually taking a more relevant role within many industries, but the current crisis created by the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic is helping to accelerate the implementation of these technologies even faster. The gambling industry has advantageously been working alongside trending technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), virtual reality (VR) and many others, to handle change in a better way. It is safe to say that the coronavirus has set a before and after in the modern world that will last over time, while people learn new ways of social interaction to stay safe.

For land-based casinos there are many challenges ahead. It is one of those industries that thrive on massive numbers of visitors, with an important portion of tourism markets. One aspect to tackle is contact with money and chips that can spread dirt and viruses easily among visitors, and a great solution comes from digital and contactless payments, cards, digital apps and even cryptocurrencies, which can replace traditional payment methods that represent a higher risk of contagion. Another more futuristic solution, but one that is already being worked on in other sectors, are the drones and robotics. They constantly become more efficient, as they are programmed to learn from experiences and data collected, and casinos could potentially benefit from robotics to interact with customers and help maintain social distancing without sacrificing great service.

The online gaming industry has also made a big jump from starting to gain legal space in more countries, to becoming the preferred entertainment source for gamblers as a replacement now that most casinos are closed. Online casinos, poker sites, sportsbooks and other online gambling venues are taking advantage of this uptick in traffic to deploy new services that can engage gamblers to continue playing even after land-based gambling venues are back. From data processing giving hints about customer’s preferences to provide better services, to offering VR casinos that can deliver an immersive experience – like those in real casinos, everything can be enhanced through AI. The wheels have already been set in motion, and there will be no turning back at this point.