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John Whittingdale Impressed With Game Payment App Ahead of Gambling Review

John Whittingdale Impressed With Game Payment App Ahead of Gambling Review

10th August 2021

John Whittingdale, Minister of State for Media and Data, witnessed Game Payment Technology’s cashless payment app in action during a recent visit to Clacton. The demonstration took place at Tom Peppers, a sports bar on Clacton seafront, using their Game Payment-enabled Reflex Games Master machine.

 

Bacta hosted the visit to provide the minister with an insight into the family entertainment and gaming options on offer in Clacton, ahead of the Gambling Review later this year. The review will assess current regulations and whether further measures are needed to protect children and vulnerable people.

 

Greg Wood, bacta president and a director of GPT, commented “It was a very positive visit, and we are grateful to the minister for giving us several hours of his time. We discussed our asks for the Gambling Review in detail. He was very interested in the Game Payment app.”

 

Game Payment enables play without physical cash and is designed to help players to manage their spending responsibly. The app allows players to:

  • Add funds up to their safe betting limit
  • Receive reminders of how much they have spent in a gaming session
  • View their transaction history for the last six months
  • Take a break from play for between one week and six months
  • Easily close their account
  • Contact support organisations

John White, chief executive of bacta, stated, “We were able to showcase the best of our industry and explain from personal experience just how difficult the Covid-19 has been for amusement machine businesses.”

 

Game Payment is easy to install in new and existing machines, both digital and analogue. Contact us at info@gamepayment.technology to discuss your machines and the best options to Game Payment-enable them.

John Whittingdale, visit to Clacton
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Industry Insights From John Rozek – How does Game Payment provide the right solution to the right market?

Industry Insights From John Rozek

22nd July 2021

As a founding director of both Game Payment Technology and Polar Moment, John has over 20 years of experience at the forefront of the payments industry. He is a recognised and respected professional across the retail payments industry, including delivering the world’s first integrated Chip and PIN solution in 2001. Over the last 2 years, John has led the evolution of the groundbreaking Game Payment solution, helping the amusement industry to meet the challenge of an increasingly cashless world.

 

In this final blog post from John, he explains how the Game Payment solution responds to different markets.

John Rozek

With differing legislation, equipment types and economic development in different countries, how does Game Payment provide the right solution to the right market?

Fitting the right solution to the right market is all about ensuring you can support all machines, ranging from the state-of-the-art to legacy machines. Some venues want to present the latest internet-connected machines with minimal integration and so software-based solutions are appropriate. Other venues want to exploit their existing machine stock, which provide great revenues from proven games. Many of these machines are analogue and/or are not internet connected. 

 

Game Payment works with both analogue and digital games machines: we can provide a hardware solution for both types and software-based solutions for digital machines. All of the communication takes place via encrypted dialogue through the player’s phone. Machines that are not internet-enabled can still work with Game Payment.         

 

Responding to differing legislation is achieved locally through the app or centrally via our cloud-based solutions. Social responsibility is principally delivered at player level within the app. Other gambling, money laundering, and fraud controls are managed centrally.

John Rozek blog

Through the app, players:

  • Can add funds up to their safe betting limit
  • Can instantly reduce their safe betting limit
  • May choose to receive reminders of how much they have spent in a gaming session
  • Can view their transaction history for the last six months
  • Can take a break from play for between one week and six months
  • Can easily close their account
  • Can access links to supportive organisations

We monitor all transactions and interactions in real time, using a blend of rules-based and artificial intelligence systems. These allow us to implement the right controls, based on our risk assessment for each country, region, and market sector. We are able to respond rapidly to changing legislation, keeping us ahead of evolving laws. New fraud rules can be implemented within a matter of hours and any identified threats can be neuturalised within minutes of identification. 

 

As we come to the end of this series of blog posts, I hope readers have found my thoughts and advice useful. If you think Game Payment might be the right payment solution for you, or you’d just like some more information, contact us at info@gamepayment.technology and we’d be happy to discuss your machines and the best options to Game Payment-enable them.

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Industry Insights From John Rozek – Will debit card systems replace ticket in/ticket out technology?

Industry Insights From John Rozek

14th July 2021

As a founding director of both Game Payment Technology and Polar Moment, John has over 20 years of experience at the forefront of the payments industry. He is a recognised and respected professional across the retail payments industry, including delivering the world’s first integrated Chip and PIN solution in 2001. Over the last 2 years, John has led the evolution of the groundbreaking Game Payment solution, helping the amusement industry to meet the challenge of an increasingly cashless world.

 

In this series of blog posts, John shares his insights into payment solutions for the gaming and amusements industry. If you are a manufacturer, operator or supplier of gaming and amusement machines, here’s John’s thinking and conclusion.

John Rozek

Will debit card systems replace ticket in/ticket out technology?

Operators have invested heavily in the technical infrastructure involved with TITO and players are familiar with using it. But change is occurring. TITO can be expensive to implement, and many operators are starting to balk at the investment costs. 

 

Players are now getting used to using apps with an associated debit card. As more players become familiar with their use, app-based solutions will become more prevalent.

John Rozek blog

Behaviour changes over time. Contactless payment has now replaced chip and PIN on all but high-value transactions. Apple Pay, Google Pay, and the other wallets, are now replacing physical contactless cards. How many times have you heard a parent say “our kids don’t even carry a card, just their mobiles?”

 

In answer to the question posed in the title of this post, eventually, yes, I believe TITO will be phased out. However, a change of this enormity will not happen overnight. TITO payment systems will remain relevant in the short term. 

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Industry Insights From John Rozek – What is the future of payments in a post-pandemic world?

Industry Insights From John Rozek

6th July 2021

As a founding director of both Game Payment Technology and Polar Moment, John has over 20 years of experience at the forefront of the payments industry. He is a recognised and respected professional across the retail payments industry, including delivering the world’s first integrated EMV solution in 2001. Over the last 2 years, John has led the evolution of the groundbreaking Game Payment solution, helping the amusement industry to meet the challenge of an increasingly cashless world.

 

In this series of blog posts, John shares his insights into payment solutions for the gaming and amusements industry. If you are a manufacturer, operator or supplier of gaming and amusement machines, here’s John’s advice for you!

John Rozek

What is the future of payments in a post-pandemic world?

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, cash was dying. Depending on the type of venue, between 60% and 90% of all transactions were cashless. However, COVID-19 has exposed the pitfalls of businesses neglecting investment in cashless payments, as this has caused another seismic shift.

A growing number of retailers, both big and small, now refuse cash. Many have opted to go card-only over the past year. According to Which?, one third of people were unable to pay with cash between March and December 2020. Grocery stores, pubs, and restaurants often refuse. The matter has gone so far that lobbyists are now calling on the government to protect cash acceptance for people without access to smart phones and other technology.

Global cashless payment volumes are set to increase by more than 80% from 2020 to 2025, from about 1tn transactions to almost 1.9tn, and to almost triple by 2030, according to analysis by PwC and Strategy&.

 

Cash will not die for many years. However, it will never recover. Instead, more and more people are banking and paying via their smart phones. Cheques can still be used, but when was the last time you wrote one?

John Rozek blog

My advice to operators is, if you haven’t done so already, now is the time to start investing in cashless technologies. Have a read of my previous blog posts around choosing the right cashless solution and decide what works best for your organisation. Do not get left behind while your competitors take advantage of changing consumer behaviour.

 

The payment ecosystem is moving at pace towards smartphone payments. As innovations in cashless payments build momentum, retailers will need to keep their eye on the ball and continue to evolve and innovate for their customers. Those that can keep up with the fast pace of digital innovation will be the ones to succeed.

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Industry Insights From John Rozek – How do I ensure my chosen payment solution meets my needs?

Industry Insights From John Rozek

30th June 2021

As a founding director of both Game Payment Technology and Polar Moment, John has over 20 years of experience at the forefront of the payments industry. He is a recognised and respected professional across the retail payments industry, including delivering the world’s first integrated EMV solution in 2001. Over the last 2 years, John has led the evolution of the groundbreaking Game Payment solution, helping the amusement industry to meet the challenge of an increasingly cashless world.

 

In this series of blog posts, John shares his insights into payment solutions for the gaming and amusements industry. If you are a manufacturer, operator or supplier of gaming and amusement machines, here’s John’s advice for you!

John Rozek

How do I ensure my chosen payment solution meets my needs?

First of all, let me ask you – what do you need from your payment solution? Your answer to that question will, of course, depend on lots of factors such as: the size of your business, the location of the venues, and the types of machines you operate. Wouldn’t it be great if you had a payment solution that suited all of your locations, and all of your machine types?

Let’s break that down into more specific needs:

Consistent player experience

If you’ve been following my blog, you will have already seen my attempts to stress the importance of player experience. Ensure your chosen payment solution can be used on all of your machines, from legacy, analogue kit to modern, state-of-the-art machines. For modern machines, GPT provides a variety of software-based solutions, including support for the GBG protocol, and for digital machines with no internet connectivity. For older machines, GPT has developed a hardware unit, which is placed inside the machine and behaves like a coin mechanism. Using Game Payment provides a consistent player experience across your entire estate.

John Rozek blog

Security

Aside from player experience, one of your top priorities should be ensuring the security of the data and transactions flowing through your machines. All player funds are actually held in a NatWest client account, controlled by bacta’s finance team.  Players’ accounts are accessed through secure e-wallets, in the cloud and not on the mobile phone The transfer of funds is protected by the same encryption technology used by the card payments industry across the globe. Processing of payments is performed by an authorised, PCI-compliant operator; Game Payment Technology never has access to payment card details.

Responsible gaming

There are lots of controls and restrictions that are designed to help players manage their spending responsibly. You will have your own thoughts and ideas on this, so ensure your chosen payment solution meets your organisation’s requirements for responsible gaming. Most app-based payment solutions include a mixture of player controls and app-based interventions, allowing players to enjoy a safe gaming experience. 

 

Age verification is often a stumbling block for smaller venues that just don’t have the resources to check every player’s ID. Game Payment uses Yoti’s advanced technology to verify each player’s age, if they want to play on gaming machines. Its accuracy is far higher than a human being can achieve. Yoti does this by using an artificial intelligence technique called machine learning. This involves checking a large number of facial images for patterns in the data and constructing an algorithm from the results. There’s no real understanding of characteristics that humans might, consciously or unconsciously consider: wrinkles, crow’s feet, stubble, etc. To a computer, it’s just data. All of this happens in a matter of seconds once the player uploads their selfie to the app. This makes the registration process quick and simple – echoing my earlier comments about the importance of the player experience.

Ability to introduce new features rapidly

Once you’ve installed your chosen solution, make sure it can continue to meet your needs in the future. Ensure you have input into its development and that new features can be added to the existing solution quickly and easily. For example, one of the latest new Game Payment features is venue-specific wallets. This allows organisations to control and promote a scheme dedicated to their own customers. Player data from venue wallets can be very powerful. You can turn an anonymous player into a ‘member’ of your venue. You can know about the person, their demographics, and how and when they play. This allows you to target and incentivise each player with offers, allowing you to upsell and promote play.

 

These are just some of the needs that you might have as an operator. The key thing is to understand what your specific requirements are, and their relative priorities. That way you can find the right solution for you.

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Industry Insights From John Rozek – How do I choose the right payment solution?

Industry Insights From John Rozek

23rd June 2021

As a founding director of both Game Payment Technology and Polar Moment, John has over 20 years of experience at the forefront of the payments industry. He is a recognised and respected professional across the retail payments industry, including delivering the world’s first integrated EMV solution in 2001. Over the last 2 years, John has led the evolution of the groundbreaking Game Payment solution, helping the amusement industry to meet the challenge of an increasingly cashless world.

 

In this series of blog posts, John shares his insights into payment solutions for the gaming and amusements industry. If you are a manufacturer, operator or supplier of gaming and amusement machines, here’s John’s advice for you!

John Rozek

How do I choose the right payment solution?

The key piece of advice that I would offer to amusement machine operators is – don’t think payment solution, think player experience.

 

By putting the focus onto the player’s experience, you will be able to make sure players actually want to use the payment solution. When they do use it, ensure it is a great experience – both the payment and the play.

 

“How do I do this?” I hear you ask. When you choose your payment solution, choose one that can be used across all of your machines so that the player does not need to step away to a remote terminal or change machine just when they are enjoying playing. This encourages them to stay and play for longer, meaning greater revenue for you!

John Rozek blog

Furthermore, ensure the solution allows you to build a strong relationship with your customers. By encouraging your customers to sign up for your cashless solution, you gain the ability to profile your customers: who they are, when they visit, their age, gender, where they live and what they play. Of course, we need to make sure that data protection laws are fully respected. However, analysed in the right way, these valuable insights allow you to plan incentives specific to your customers. This will in turn drive increased play and deepen their affinity to the venue.

 

Another key consideration when choosing your payment solution is thinking ahead and making sure it is future proof. Players are migrating to pay and play solutions that enhance their experience and exploit modern technology. The use of mobile apps is the way forward across all payment solutions, not just in gaming. You will have seen across hospitality that the use of apps has soared following the easing of lockdown. Old payment methods are falling away.

 

My final piece of advice is something you will likely already be doing. Try to minimise costs as much as possible. Cash handling is expensive and time consuming. Contactless readers and TITO are expensive due to mandated security requirements and the need to be hardened for the arcade environment. Look for the lowest cost option. Not only for you, but also for your customers – who wants to pay fees for simply adding or withdrawing their own money? This will give the player a damaging experience when playing your machines. Remember my key piece of advice – don’t think payment solution, think player experience.

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Rapid Progress for Game Payment Technology

Rapid Progress for Game Payment Technology

12th June 2021

Game Payment Technology (GPT) – the joint venture formed by bacta and Polar Moment to provide an easy-to-use alternative to cash payments for amusements and fruit machines – continues to make rapid progress.

 

Use of the Game Payment app on fruit machines has been doubling, week on week, since pubs and arcades opened on the 17th of May. Tim Stratton, a GPT director, commented “We’re very pleased with how quickly the value of cashless play is increasing. We’re already well above the levels achieved before lockdown started in November. We had hoped to see the cashless use of machines climb to an average of £20 per week in the first year. But the most successful machines are already taking over £150 per week and the average is £60. The average player using the app is playing more than £50 per week through fruit machines.”

 

The main reasons for the popularity of the Game Payment app are its ease of use and its robustness. Player registration is quick and easy: players use the app to take a selfie for age verification and then provide details of their address and debit card. The process is simple; the GPT team has received only a handful of support queries.

 

Jason Jarrett, Managing Director of Automatic Machine Services Ltd., commented “Since 17th May when most of our customers re-opened, we have seen significantly higher levels of income from equipment fitted with the Game Payment app. This technology is proving its worth and these early results give us every confidence to continue to roll-out this simple but effective alternative payment method, to as many machines as possible, to maximise revenues for all our customers.”

 

GPT has already developed both hardware and software-based plug-ins that will support a huge range of different types of amusement machines: with and without prizes, analogue and digital, internet-capable and without their own communications capabilities. They have also developed support for the Gambling Business Group EFT protocol and are ready to test this against the implementations developed by some of the leading manufacturers. This is expected to be formally released next month.

 

Another innovation that GPT will soon be offering its customers is affordability checking. This will be used to protect players who wish to increase their spending limit. The service is provided through a partnership with GBG Plc, the leaders in identity verification for gaming. “GPT have been leaders in moving the amusement and gaming industry forward with cashless payment options and are leading the way once more by offering affordability checks for their land-based gaming customers. Protecting players is of upmost importance and we are proud to be supporting GPT with our affordability solution.” says Rebekah Jackson, GBG Business Development Director.

 

These are just the latest new features introduced by GPT, building on the earlier release of the software plug-in for digital machines and support for the range of machines found in family entertainment centres. There are several more updates coming before the end of the year. Follow @gamepaymenttech for all the latest news or email info@gamepayment.technology for more information.

Jason Jarrett AMS
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Introducing GPT Explorer Desktop

Introducing GPT Explorer Desktop

10th June 2021

GPT Explorer is a new desktop app for Windows that provides access to your data from Game Payment Technology contactless devices.

 

If you are using GPT app payment in your machines, the GPT Explorer desktop app from VMA Systems is a must have.

 

View your SLU devices, registered machines, real-time income and settlement information all from your desktop. You can register new engineering app users and link SLU devices to your machines, submit and update your venues to the GPT website and more.

 

Use the interactive chart to view your cashless income by date, by machine and even drill down to income per hour, then you can save a snapshot of this to view later or when you are offline.*

GPT explorer app

You can download and use GPT Explorer for free and if you want a little more functionality, there is a pro version available for a small one-off licence purchase, no ongoing subscriptions or renewals.

 

For more information or to download now click the link below:

*some features require the full pro version.

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Game Payment LIVE at Brighton Palace Pier

Game Payment LIVE at Brighton Palace Pier

12th May 2021

Brighton Palace Pier is the first family entertainment centre to partner with Game Payment Technology. They have installed the cashless gaming solution onto the 75 machines in their Dome arcade, ready for reopening in mid-May.

 

Mike Brocklehurst from Brighton Palace Pier commented: “We’re very excited to welcome our customers back after the lockdown ends. We’ve put lots of measures into place to ensure everyone can enjoy playing our games safely. This includes the Game Payment app with our own Brighton Palace Pier wallet.”

 

Despite the lockdown halting machine play, the team at GPT have been updating the Game Payment app so it can be used in amusement arcades. The new version allows users to play not only on gaming machines, but on ALL machine types, in ALL venues!

 

So What’s New?

 

Before lockdown, the Game Payment app was being used in 80 pubs and social clubs to play fruit machines. The new version of the app allows players to use the app to play on all the machines in a venue without the need for cash (with the exception of coin pusher machines, obviously, though Game Payment can also be used with change machines).

 

The new version of the app still has all of the age verification and social responsibility measures that were in place before the update. However, if players only want to play on machines without age-restrictions (for example, those in family entertainment centres) then the age verification process is optional.

 

The new app was tested and demonstrated on a basketball machine at Brighton Palace Pier earlier this year. The recording of this demo is available on the GPT website and social media channels. Following the success of these initial tests, 75 machines in Brighton Palace Pier’s Dome arcade have now had the Game Payment solution installed.

 

Another significant addition to the app provides customers with their own wallets. The look and feel of the app can be customised and venue and machine-specific promotions offered. Brighton Palace Pier is the first customer to take advantage of this. They are currently offering up to 20% off the cost of play when players pay using the Brighton wallet within the Game Payment app.

 

What Are the Business Benefits?

 

The Bank of England reported in 2019 that only 23% of all payments that year were made using cash. This was down from close to 60% a decade earlier, as people increasingly turned to other payment methods, such as debit cards and digital payments. With fewer people carrying cash, players either stop playing very quickly or they need to visit an ATM. The Game Payment app provides a more convenient, modern solution, making it easier for customers to stay and play in the arcade.

 

GPT director John Rozek stated: “The Brighton Palace Pier wallet will allow Brighton to provide its customers with an experience tailored to their location and brand. Brighton Pier will benefit from detailed insights into its customer base that simply is not possible with cash or debit cards, allowing it optimise its proposition and drive customer-specific marketing. The app is now open to all, with age verification only required for gambling machines. The app can be used on all machines, including change dispensers, so even the pushers are supported. Game Payment has achieved a massive step change, providing a modern solution that not only responds to the decline in cash, but also enables stronger business performance based on insights and promotions”.

 

Interested?

 

Game Payment is currently being rolled out to many new sites, ready for the end of lockdown. The solution is easy to install in new machines or to retrofit, in both digital and analogue machines. Contact us at info@gamepayment.technology to discuss your machines and the best options to Game Payment-enable them.

Brighton Palace Pier
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Game Payment in Action Video

Game Payment in Action Video

22nd April 2021