The Great Disruptors: What are the Industry's Next Technological Game Changers

Rob MeakinWe've probably got our hands full with the opportunities that mobile is bringing - the next "great disruptors" are likely to be in some way associated with the growth of mobile.   It would seem that mobile devices are becoming more often the primary way that customers are engaging with gaming services - for instance last year William Hill reported some 90K registrations through mobile devices - as the desktop PC dies a death as far as entertainment is concerned we are only going to see the emphasis on registrations through mobile increase. 

The platform debate continues - HTML5 clearly provides portability, and ease of development and deployment across a broad estate of mobile devices, whereas native apps are perhaps more difficult to deliver in respect of needing device specific development and are subject to the release constraints imposed by distributors - it seems to me that native applications are gaining the upper ground, and in my view rightly so, as native capabilities provide a richer customer experience and greater scope for innovation - although I've heard some discussion of hybrid solutions, which whilst not favoured by the likes of Apple, would bring together the best of both options.

At Callcredit we are focussed on the implications of this from a customer verification, money laundering and fraud perspective.  The factors that disrupt here are three-fold: mobile devices are perhaps more likely to be accessed by underage players; usability challenges will perhaps place some constraints around data entry which may have implications for our ability to verify customers; new technologies attract the attention of fraudsters, and mGaming is not immune. 

Operators cannot assume that mobile devices registered to adults, are used by adults - age verification needs to be incorporated into registration processes for mobile as they are in other channels.

Some innovative thinking is required in terms of front end data capture to ensure information is accurate and detailed enough to enable effective id verification - for example, address pre-population and using device data to complete customer profiles.

Some mechanisms for validating payment details impact customer experience even in web-based services - I'd suggest these are entirely inappropriate for the mobile environment.  If we are to avoid a significant increase in card fraud, it is critical that operators implement robust card validation.

There is a risk that insufficient energies are directed into addressing these factors as operators strive to take advantage of the opportunities this new channel presents.

Rob Meakin
Market Development Manager
Callcredit Information Group