Over the years, the gambling industry has evolved and will continue to evolve as technology changes and customers change their gambling behaviour. If we take a look at land-based casino resorts, we can see a massive shift of funds in order to maximise profits. Just a few years ago, gaming resorts made a lot of money from in-room movies and charges for long distance calls from the hotel room. Today, this is not the case. Back then, in-room movies actually made up around 10% of the hotels overall revenue. Hotel room phone charges often cost more than the room itself!
In the casino, payphones like those outside the sportsbook could make more money than a well-placed slot machine. Technology has forced the casinos to re-think how and where they can make their money. Today, smartphones, tablets and laptops have replaced in-room movies and payphones. This drop in revenue spawned the creation of “resort fees.” These fees include Internet access, the use of the swimming pool and the gym. The interesting thing is that the resort fees can be as much as 50% of the total price of the room.
Technology and Industry Changes
Instead of simply making the room charge higher, casinos introduced resort fees. This is because online booking services take a percentage of the room rate but not the resort fees, thus the casino resort wins. It is just another way of shifting the funds to increase profits. If you haven’t already noticed, land-based gambling has been on a decline for the past couple of years. With the introduction of online and mobile casinos, it is hardly surprising.
It used to be that you could walk into a casino and get free drinks, free lounge shows and decently priced food. All of this was on offer for one reason; to keep you inside the casino walls where all the money was made. Today this is not the case. Casino resorts actually end up making more money outside of the casino walls than inside.
Moving the Money
As strange as it may seem, theme parks, sportsbooks, live shows, music, entertainment, arcades and other forms of entertainment all pull in more profit than the main casino. Some casino resorts have even started charging for parking. This simple switch has created a massive cash cow for the casino where previously none existed. At your average Las Vegas casino, overnight parking can cost as much as $30. If you factor in renting a car, this all adds up to a huge amount of money for players to fork out. It won’t be long until consumer behaviour changes again and people start using ride share apps, and taxis to get around Vegas.
The Evolution of Bingo
Bingo is another key example of how technology has shifted the industry. In the past, bingo was played in large bingo halls or special casino rooms dedicated for bingo. The introduction of online bingo has once again shifted consumer behaviour. Anyone with a laptop, tablet or smartphone can go online and play any number of bingo games for free or for real money.
It is becoming harder to find a casino that offers bingo now. In the US and UK, the online revolution has led to the closure of many bingo halls and a rapid increase of online bingo websites. The basic principles of online bingo remain the same. Players are able to buy bingo cards, play a few rounds and even chat to their friends via the chat window.
When online bingo first hit, the various bingo games were all you could find online. Today, things are changing again. People have gotten so used to the overstimulation and accessibility of online gambling that basic bingo games just aren’t enough anymore. This has prompted bingo sites to include slots and bingo side games into the picture. Actually, this has suited the bingo operators just fine. While their main profits come from the bingo games themselves, introducing slots and side games has brought in an unexpected cash injection. After all, slots are designed to make money. All casino games are designed to keep a percentage of the winnings while paying out the rest.
The Future of Online Bingo
With players wanting more winning opportunities, more excitement and more overall entertainment, online bingo websites have had to adapt with the times. Bingo hosts continually interact with the players and host mini games where they dish out credits for things like music quizzes, general knowledge and other interactive games.
It is difficult to predict where and how technology will take us next. Even more difficult is predicting consumer behaviour. Land-based casinos have already started introducing eSport gambling facilities with competitive arcade games on the casino floor. One thing is certain though, whatever the shift, casino operators, resorts and bingo websites will adapt and find ways to maximise their profits while keeping their players happy!