How the industry is fast becoming a proving ground for Fintech innovations
Many businesses have been dragged kicking and screaming into the digital era, with some reluctant to accept that their future was always bound to be dictated by how they adapted to things like online payment systems. However, there are some sectors, such as online gaming, that have stayed ahead of the curve when it comes to adopting new fintech.
The rise of in-game payments
Online stores and websites offering services have always relied on some form of online payment system, yet only recently have new payment structures begun to be rolled out by savvy games and fintech developers alike.
A prime example of this is the online Battle Royale sensation Fortnite, which, despite being a free-to-play game both on mobile and PC/console, has found a way to integrate in-game purchases, with players spending big bucks on fancy avatars and skins for their weapons. Such purchases are also known as microtransactions.
Alongside this clever microtransactions business model, Epic Games also offers players a VIP pass of sorts, called BattlePass. This is a monthly subscription that keeps the game running at optimal levels for those who purchase it. There is even an in-game currency called V-bucks, batches of which can be bought in bulk, thus giving a discount to players who use them in the game.
Epic has raked in vast profits from these innovative approaches. So much so, in fact, that they are now doing battle with Apple and Google, as the app store giants vie for a bigger piece of the microtransaction pie. They are also looking to take Apple to court over their monopoly of the App Store, a real-life Battle Royale that should prove interesting to watch over the coming months.
Online casinos and Fintech
One online business that has long been well ahead of the curve when it comes to collaborating with Fintech firms is the online casino industry, with the sector’s competitors vying to provide their customers with fast and stress-free payment options which can be made at the drop of a hat. Players want to be able to keep their slot reels spinning or their blackjack hands flopping without having to constantly worry about whether their funds will be available.
This has meant that the top providers of online casino games work with multiple e-wallets and payment providers, ranging from established names such as PayPal, all the way through to new kids on the block such as Neosurf or MuchBetter, which enable players to easily fund their accounts and keep that hot streak going.
Cryptocurrencies: the new Fintech frontier
While regular currencies are traded and manipulated as they have been for many years, and gaming companies even develop their own in-game currencies, there is widespread agreement that crypto is where the future lies.
Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, are decentralized digital currencies that use blockchain technology to essentially try and democratize the world of finance. Although the strength of their security protocols may not always be quite what they claim them to be, more and more people are now trading cryptocurrencies as well as using them to purchase goods and services.
Many gaming platforms and developers are already making contingencies so that they can harness this new type of currency, a move that will no doubt pay dividends down the line.