International Game Technology (IGT) is known as one of the largest slot machine makers in the world. The provider has been an innovator in both the online and land-based casino industry for many years.
Now in an exciting turn of events, IGT kicked off 2021 by receiving a patent from the US Patent Trademark Office that would enable crypto users to play land-based slots!
Shares for IGT surged after the company won the patent allowing gamblers to use digital currencies on slot machines.
With the new patent, gamblers will have the ability to move cryptocurrency from their smartphones onto slot machines and back again. Winnings will also be available to claim in crypto form.
In the IGT document, ‘cryptocurrency’ is used frequently but Bitcoin and Ethereum are specifically mentioned. Thus, the slot maker is banking or targeting two of the largest digital assets.
With the patent in hand, IGT could soon be offering cryptocurrency as a payment option on their popular casino games which includes titles such as Megabucks and Wheel of Fortune.
Company Spokesman Phil O’Shaughnessy stated that they weren’t currently developing any cashless games but getting ready for future developments regarding cryptocurrency.
“IGT secured this patent to bolster its industry-leading patent portfolio in anticipation of any possible future direction in regulated gaming involving cryptocurrency.”
The efforts for cashless gaming have increased and adding crypto gaming could be the next step. IGT seems to be getting ready for when this happens.
Many authorities, including the Nevada Gaming Commission, has taken steps to reduce the cash usage in casinos. The Nevada Gaming Commission specifically approved rules that make it easier for players to electronically transfer funds from casino accounts to banks and vice versa.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, the outcry and need for contactless payment methods has become even more vital especially in land-based establishments such as casinos. Various companies are working on cashless options as the belief is that even after the pandemic has passed there will be concerns regarding cash trades.
IGT Resort Wallet
IGT is just one company that has put in an application for approval of cashless payment options. They reported that the final stage of Nevada regulatory approval for their Resort Wallet cashless payment system has been completed.
With this product, players will get to use a loyalty card to transfer cash into a secure digital wallet. This can be done via the casino cash desk or any Resort Wallet enabled slot machine.
Cryptocurrency and Millennials
With cryptocurrency potentially becoming a valid payment option for slot gameplay, resorts and casinos might have the chance of attracting a younger generation casino players.
Tons of research has been done on how to appeal to the younger, tech-savvy generation. And while crypto slot machines are not a guarantee there is a chance that adding a digital currency might appeal to millennials in the long run.