By Elizabeth Hodges, Account Manager, Infradata UK
Today in Britain, online gambling accounts for 33% of all gambling spend, meaning that more people are parting with their pounds over the internet than in any other gambling format. This includes the National Lottery – often seen as the exception to the rule or a softer form of gambling. The convenience of online gambling and the emergence of omnichannel means that a steady rise in this figure is inevitable (and predicted).
To the average Jo(anna?) placing their next online bet on Black 24, these figures have little or no impact…or do they? This is a business transaction like any other, and whilst the customer/player isn’t always expecting a financial return (unless they are an eternal optimist) they do expect decent, real-time odds, reliability of availability and an attractive user-friendly interface. All these things are considered standard and have been around since the rise of the internet and the introduction of online betting. However with this vastly expanding and pioneering industry comes growing pains…this time in the network.
Every IT professional is acutely aware of the potential security perils associated with running an online business, so there’s no need to recap them all here. What is less discussed is how your network is going to support the predicted 30% increase in this market, and the relentless innovation that’s taking place? From virtual gaming with strangers to managing the introduction of online multi-operator self-exclusion, your infrastructure needs to be responsive and resilient enough to support all of these changes.
The dawn of SDN and NFV brings new opportunities in network automation and customisation. The potential to deliver new services and products in immediate response to customer and market demands is being realised by gambling organisations the world over. This could be enabling the latest social-gaming app to scale up for an unexpected peak in traffic as its endorsed by users across Facebook or launching a service at the drop of a hat to defend against a competitors latest launch. In an industry so susceptible to market forces, a constantly evolving and adaptable network is a necessity.
If you aren’t exploiting the opportunities facilitated by a truly customisable, responsive infrastructure the chances are that your competition is. Not every organisation can be first with every innovation, nor can we all be constant disruptors in our respective industries. But for online gaming and gambling companies, whose creativity and drive to push the boundaries is the key to survival, a successful IT infrastructure transformation – one which minimises disruption and maximises results – is a must.
Innovation doesn’t only come from the creative designs within an organisation or the introduction of new gaming formats, it comes from outside of the organisation as well, from partners and vendors who help capitalise on new opportunities. An experienced partner can help customers remain relevant in today’s market whilst developing strategies to gain an increased and sustainable competitive advantage for tomorrow.