WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
As more industries look to engage their new digital, omni-channel customers in new ways they often look to the gaming world for inspiration, and there’s plenty of inspiration to be had.
Firstly, I’d like to thank Michael Caselli, the Editor in Chief of iGaming Business, Henry, and his team for inviting me to kick off and speak at the four day iGaming Super Show held at the Amsterdam RAI, Amsterdam’s largest event space. And what a show it was.
What do bitcoin, cows, metal shapes, salt and shells have in common? At one point or another they’ve all been forms of money, and we discussed them all and much more besides.
With over 6,500 delegates from over a hundred different countries and with all the major gaming and payment companies represented, from 888.com, Bet365 and Betfair to Ladbrokes, NetBet and William Hill, the event was never going to disappoint – and even if it had started going down that route then then the flying Panda’s, courtesy of Royal Panda Affiliates, would have more than pulled it back.
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The rate of innovation and new technology adoption in the gaming industry always seems to be a hot topic among the other industries, which I think is a little akin to nosy neighbour syndrome where the neighbours keep peering over the fence to see what you’re up to.
Nowadays, whatever halls I walk I almost always find myself facing off with individuals and organisations that exuberantly talk about their passion to gamify one thing or another – whether it’s the gamification of cybersecurity by creating new virtual reality worlds, or the gamification of the shopping experience or, in the financial services sector, the gamification of Personal Finance Management (PFM) platforms.
However, while I’ve always been a gamer at heart, and no I’m not going to share what platforms I played as a kid because that would just show how young I am, as I’m increasingly exposed to the immersive worlds that are now at our fingertips it’s clear that those other industries could still learn a trick or ten from the guys whose sole purpose in life it seems to be to tear down and re-invent the status quo on a daily basis – whether it’s for their online or offline customers.
As you might expect from an industry that loves to race headlong into the future the show was awash with companies showing off their artificial intelligence, augmented reality, blockchain and virtual reality smarts, and I lost count of the number of times the words “Bitcoin,” “Decentralised,” and “World’s first” was mentioned.
As wonderfully engaging as this whole new virtual, or is it digital, go debate, world is though, it like every other industry on the planet, is run on money and that was where little old me came into the picture.
Michael and the team had asked me to present on the Future of Money, (see the slide deck on Slideshare), and in just under an hour the audience and I covered over 4,000 years of history and forecasting, from the time when cows, which are notoriously difficult to put in your wallet, were the prime currency through to the digital, decentralised monies of the future in 2050 and beyond. And in case you’re wondering yes, we also crossed the chasm and shone a light on the future of automation, connectivity, digital ID’s, payments and much more. Who said money was simple? And during the Q&A sessions we went deeper into the rabbit holes and discussed how to create your own cryptocurrencies, and how to build their value, regulations and all manner of fun and exciting topics.
Now, as for myself, it’s time to head back to London, but, as they say, the show must go on… yeah, sorry about the pun.