In 2021, entertainment is bigger than ever. It is, of course, a very diverse ecosystem with each kind having unique strengths and weaknesses. Gaming happens to be one of the most popular ways through which people get entertained. It comes in different forms each of which targets different audiences. However, most of them are slowly merging. Let’s look at both sectors and how their dynamism is gradually bringing them together.
Video Games in the United Kingdom
As it stands, the United Kingdom (UK) is one of the most vibrant video game markets on the planet. To put this into context, in 2021, the ranks as the top video game market in Europe. From a global perspective, it is the sixth-largest. That makes the region’s video game market a lucrative space for various companies.
The seemingly meteoric rise of the UK video game industry is not too surprising. It is a sector that largely relies on technology which has also been rising at a fast pace. Digital transformation was thus key to the success of the industry. Its shifts into what it is today are all traceable from significant technological leaps, especially from the last two decades.
Can we quantify that? Well, we can now enjoy lots of amazing online and mobile video game releases because of some rather simple factors. These are innovation, massive investment into new technologies and unmatched consumer interest. The modern digital landscape is a gold mine. Last year, video game software retail sales revenue in the UK clocked a whopping 4.22 billion pounds. Digital sales contributed to a huge chunk of that revenue. This further proves just how lucrative the sector remains.
Interest in the market has conveniently turned into a beneficial thing for the UK. For instance, international companies like Sony Interactive Entertainment, Konami, Microsoft and Take-Two have offices in the region. There are even development studios in the country.
Online Gaming in the United Kingdom
When online gambling first went live in the UK in the mid-90s, players could only enjoy a few rather basic games. The user interfaces at the time were quite basic, to say the least. However, thanks to several years’ worth of learning and development as well as massive advances in technology, the new UK betting sites are insanely different. Even the laws have changed in major ways to accommodate the lucrative industry.
As it stands, the United Kingdom has more than 25 million gamblers. Half of these people prefer to place their bets online. Online gaming thus easily accounts for nearly 40 percent of the country’s gambling market revenue which is about £14.3 billion annually. At the rate that the sector is growing, it will not be surprising if that percentage rises to 50 in coming years.
In 2021, some of that growth was brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. With no access to many of the social gaming spaces, many gamblers switched to online gambling. The sector was already doing quite well but that did catalyze its rise. That especially applies to people who were previously only familiar with retail casinos. In essence, millions of new online gamblers joined the online gaming space in the past year.
How Video Games and Online Gambling Are Coming Together
As we established earlier, video games are more exciting than ever before. The same applies to online gambling. However, what is even more exciting is how the two sectors have been overlapping lately. Gambling operators and video game companies have found interesting ways of giving customers the best of both worlds.
The first thing that often comes to mind is Esports and Esports betting. They are currently among the fastest-growing verticals of their respective sectors. For video game enthusiasts, Esports and competitive video gaming have brought out a whole new dimension to video culture. The sport currently has millions of dedicated fans from all around the world. Reputable companies and organizations also got on board further affirming just how much potential it has.
For sports bettors, Esports betting takes the excitement a notch higher. Betting on traditional sports is still very desirable but having more choice is certainly more fun. Betting on Esports is just as fun and offers pretty much the same perks. That said, the luckiest lot will be those that are fans of both video games and online gambling.
Beyond Esports, video games still also inspire the designs, storylines, and themes of casino titles. It is a rather subtle aspect but it makes a difference for many fans. For that reason, we simply cannot ignore its significance.
If the current numbers are anything to go by, gamers have so much to look forward to. Technology is also getting better and we are very excited to see how it gets integrated into these fabulous forms of entertainment. It is worth noting that both video games and online gambling have had a few ups and downs over the years. Thankfully, the stakeholders have been working on ways of resolving those issues. The goal is to deliver gaming experiences that are not only safe but also fair.