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Contents » Features
  • WHO YOU GONNA CALL?
    Published:  16 June, 2011

    Maximising income means minimising machine downtime – but operators and venues rarely have the skills to tackle major repairs themselves. We find out who can help

  • Simple is good
    Published:  16 June, 2011

    An effective maintenance service isn’t just about technical expertise, as Gamestec’s experience fixing machines across the UK has shown. Factors such as speed of response and simplicity of fault reporting make a difference too.

  • Repair or replace?
    Published:  16 June, 2011

    When a part fails, is repair always the answer? One firm, E-Service, argues that it can also be an opportunity to upgrade. It offers 26-inch and 42-inch LCD replacement kits, designed to replace CRT monitors on older units.

  • Q&A: Bob Pickles
    Published:  16 June, 2011

    The amusements sector is a whole new world for Congatec’s UK ambassador Bob Pickles – but he’s hoping that using the electronics expertise he’s picked up in other industries, he can reduce long-term costs for gaming manufacturers and operators

  • Trade show heads to Texas
    Published:  15 June, 2011

    The Bowling Proprietors Association of America (BPAA) is to hold this year’s International Bowl Expo, its main annual convention and trade show, in Texas for the first time. It runs at venues in Grapevine and Arlington from 25 June through 1 July.

  • Is it legal?
    Published:  13 May, 2011

    Every month Euroslot updates you on the latest news affecting gaming policy and regulation around the world

    CHINA

    Beijing’s Municipal Bureau of Culture is regulating the number of recreation centres in the Chinese capital. It says the total number of recreation centres cannot exceed 838 unless the development of this industry requires the figure to be adjusted.

    Beijing now has 98 legal recreation centres and so as many as 740 could be added under the plan by the city government. There are currently no venues for amusements in Shijingshan District, Pingu District or Yanqing County; by contrast, Dongcheng District contains 18, the largest number of existing amusement venues within the city.

  • Selling power
    Published:  13 May, 2011

    Vending leisure products, from collectible toys to iPods, provides a new revenue stream at minimal cost. But what do you sell, and how do you start?

    Jon Bruford investigates

    Machines that vend leisure products can be a useful source of income, with financial risks for the site operator that can be kept very slight. For example, if a gym owner wanted to vend iPods to members they could look forward to a high potential return, with no danger of pilferage thanks to excellent machine security, and a product that’s on sale round the clock with no staffing requirement.

  • Terminal velocity
    Published:  13 May, 2011

    With Italy’s VLT rollouts continuing apace and Greece likely to follow soon, how are the big gaming vendors responding to this new demand?

    Few major gaming suppliers can afford to ignore the large new markets opening up for video lottery terminals (VLTs). But they’re all putting different twists on VLT technology’s ability to deliver both tried-and-tested games and novel content, maximising player involvement and operator profits.

  • Spain Market Report
    Published:  13 May, 2011

    Various administrative and tax regulations affecting the Spanish autonomous regions were published during 2009. The Gambling Tax for 2009 varied between Euros3,832,86 and Euros2,845.80 per machine/year.

  • Q&A: Siegfried Dattl
    Published:  13 May, 2011

    He was collecting cash boxes before his tenth birthday and servicing slots by the age of 15 – but TAB-Austria’s Siegfried Dattl still isn’t bored by amusements (though an island paradise might tempt him)

  • Is it legal?
    Every month Euroslot updates you on the latest news affecting gaming policy and regulation around the world
    Published:  06 April, 2011

    AUSTRALIA

    Churches in Australia have launched a task force pressing for reform to gambling laws. Representatives of the Uniting, Catholic, Baptist and Anglican churches as well as The Salvation Army say that 90,000 Australian players of poker machines are problem gamblers, losing an average of AUD21,000 (€15,200) each year. Further, they say, knock-on social costs of problem gambling reach AUD4.7bn (€3.4bn) annually.

  • Looking your best
    Published:  06 April, 2011

     As one of the world’s biggest events for users of screen technology draws close, we look at the benefits to amusement businesses of replacing old-fashioned signs with digital displays

    Digital screens are such an integral part of the gaming experience today – simulating mechanical slots and increasingly table games too, announcing jackpots to the world, displaying rules for novice players – that it’s difficult to imagine an amusement venue without them. And now, they’re becoming commonplace away from gaming areas too, replacing signs, posters and other printed material in public places, displaying multimedia content that can be instantaneously changed, and providing opportunities for interaction that were barely possible with static signage.

  • Asia Market Report
    Published:  06 April, 2011

    CHINA

    Last year, The Ministry of Culture of China warned that, “as of April 30, 2010, all amusement and entertainment venues are not allowed to operate games and amusement machines that are not listed in the guiding directory of machine models for market access issued by culture administrative departments.” Understandably, this has caused the industry some concern.

  • Keeping it simple
    Published:  06 April, 2011

    A new sports-betting system encourages customers to make repeated small wagers on what happens next in a game, reports Jon Bruford

    Most sports betting depends on both the punter and the bookmaker having, and understanding, information about the event that’s being bet on – for example, the team line-ups for a football match. Who wins the bet is partly a function of who understands that information most fully and makes the more accurate prediction based on it, as well as on luck, of course.

  • Q&A: Armin Sageder
    Published:  06 April, 2011

    Self-service is the way of the future for Britain’s betting shops, Armin Sageder believes, and to prove it he started Best Gaming Technology.

    We profile the CEO who swapped physics for fun

  • Special report: Britain
    Published:  08 March, 2011

    The regulator releases a slew of statistics that will help form policy in Whitehall and Westminster

    As we went to press, UK regulator the Gambling Commission published its 2010 British Gambling Prevalence Survey. The document itself is not policy, and only in small parts is it even opinion, but is likely to inform government policy-making on gaming for some years to come.

  • Market Report: Austria
    Published:  08 March, 2011

    On 16th of June a new amendment to the Austrian gambling Law was adopted by the parliament.

    After nearly two years of delays and discussions about the details and quality of the draft, it was hastily approved by a majority of four of the five political parties, because of the feared judgment of the ECJ in the Austrian „Engelmann“ case, C-64/08.

  • Are you being served?
    Published:  08 March, 2011

    It’s been a buzz-phrase in the casino industry for a while – but is there a case for server-based gaming in the world of amusements too? Jon Bruford investigates

    Half a dozen years ago, server-based gaming (SBG) was believed to be the magic bullet for casino gaming, the way to drive growth for both operators and suppliers. For operators, it would allow sophisticated use of and gathering of business intelligence data in ways previously impossible; it would create a tailored universe for their customers at the slot machine and, tied in with other available technologies, allow real-time marketing to the player’s hand.

  • What is server-based gaming?
    Published:  08 March, 2011

    Mostly applied to slots and sometimes to digital table games too, server-based gaming means that the game runs on a central server computer rather than on the individual machine that the player is using. It’s similar in principle to using the Web: you view Web pages on your own PC, but they’re actually hosted on a server somewhere else, and most – if not all – of the jobs the Website can do (calculating a currency conversion, say) are performed on that remote server.

  • Is it legal?
    Published:  09 February, 2011

    Every month Euroslot brings you the latest regulations, court rulings and government policies affecting the gaming industry around the world

  • Real Ale
    Published:  09 February, 2011

    Gaming machines can be big contributors to the bottom line for Britain’s beleaguered pubs, but choosing the right ones and managing them properly are essential

    Britain’s 50,000-odd pubs are rarely out of the news, and it’s rarely good. Battered by the smoking ban, savaged by the recession, bled dry by rapacious pubcos, trampled by price-cutting supermarkets, they are – if you believe the scare stories – closing on every street corner.

    And indeed, their number is declining. But enough are thriving, and while the big positive pub stories in the last couple of decades may have been the arrival of good food and revival of high-quality beer, many venues are finding that providing their customers with entertainment options such as gaming machines is an equally valid route to profitability.

  • Germany Market Report
    Published:  09 February, 2011

    Germany had a new gaming law in 2006, which has enabled AWP manufacturers to explore new game concepts and software programmes and which has opened the market up to global suppliers. Video-based AWPs have become more popular in the German market and this has led to a greater variety of games and more choice for players.

    The focus is no longer exclusively on selling new machines. In fact, leasing of hardware has become more common in Germany. Content is supplied as part of a rental contract, updated regularly. This has changed the traditional structure of the AWP sector.

  • Happy vending
    Published:  09 February, 2011

    Vending food and drink to your customers can keep them playing on your premises, and provide a revenue stream too. Jon Bruford investigates

    Vending machines are ever-present in our lives; everywhere we go, something’s available to buy from a machine – usually food or refreshments, and generally in locations where the machine is not the main attraction but where there will be enough people passing by for some to stop and take advantage of its offer, like train stations or shopping centres.

  • Q&A: Paul Malt
    Published:  09 February, 2011

    It was the flashing lights that drew him in – but two decades later Paul Malt, director of games design at Mazooma Interactive Games, is still glad he chose a career in amusements

  • Great Britain Market Report
    Published:  14 January, 2011

    What do Britons play?

    BACTA, the trade body which describes itself as “representing the British pay-to-play leisure machines industry”, says the most common type of machine in terms of installed base across the country is trivial AWPs, at 55,500 units.

    They are followed by pool at 49,700 units; jukeboxes at 29,100; club/jackpot machines at 28,300 units; video at 27,500; novelties at 26,600; kiddie rides at 23,500; SWPs at 14,100; pushers at 4900; and pinball at 2000.

  • 2010: the year in law
    Published:  14 January, 2011

    Europe handed down a series of decisions on states’ rights to regulate gaming, Britain revolutionised its tax regime for amusement machines, and everywhere regulators struggled to deal with online.

  • Is it legal?
    Published:  11 January, 2011

    Every month Euroslot brings you the latest regulations, court rulings and government policies affecting the industry around the world

    AUSTRALIA

    The state of Victoria is challenging the federal government’s plans for a compulsory limit on the amount gamblers can bet on poker machines. The scheme, to be in place by the end of 2014, calls for each player to have an ID card which prevents them going beyond a daily limit. It is also expected that ATMs in clubs and pubs will be restricted to issuing each individual a maximum of AUD250 (€185) per day. However, Victoria’s gaming minister Michael O’Brien has described the plan as “the type of Big Brother, nanny-state policy that many Australians will instinctively reject”.

  • Ireland Market Report
    Published:  11 January, 2011

    Our international readers should note that the northern part of the island of Ireland (known as Northern Ireland, or sometimes as Ulster) is part of the United Kingdom and thus has an entirely different regulatory framework from the larger southern part of the island (an independent nation known as the Republic of Ireland, or sometimes as Eire). This market profile deals only with the Republic.

  • Sea worlds
    Published:  11 January, 2011

    Cruise ships and ferries must serve a broad range of consumers, all requiring entertainment during their voyage. What role do amusements play? Jon Bruford investigates

    Cruise ships and ferries are two places where you’re guaranteed one thing – at some point, people will need to be entertained and amused. And the key to how that’s done lies in the demographics of passengers.

  • Driving forces
    Published:  11 January, 2011

    How can amusements help the operators of motorway service areas bridge the gap between high costs and receding revenue?

    Legendary for their soulless air, bickering families and wallet-busting prices, Britain’s motorway services are, it’s fair to say, not among the country’s best-loved leisure venues. Perhaps surprisingly, then, they are significant users of amusements, and rely on gaming for a chunk of revenue that the government estimates could be as high as 20 percent – and as a proportion of total sales, that’s much more than gaming machines generate for either the betting-shop or casino sectors, with which they’re more readily associated.

  • On the autostrada
    Published:  11 January, 2011

    Although the British sometimes regard them as a typically dismal national creation, motorway services are common, albeit usually smaller, across the rest of Europe. Indeed, they are often found more closely spaced than in the UK, where the government’s recommended distance between locations is about 30 miles.

  • Q&A: Les Ashton-Smith
    Published:  11 January, 2011

    The Heber MD’s career has led him from electronics to safety equipment, from executive coaching to gaming – and it’s in this business that he plans to stay. Les Ashton-Smith explains why...

  • JCM in Vegas
    Published:  11 November, 2010

    For the past 20 years, JCM Global has led the gaming industry with peripheral components allowing slot operators to quickly and safely accept wagers and pay out winnings. Now at G2E 2010 in Las Vegas, the firm will be showing two revolutionary new products...

  • Italy - Market Report
    Published:  11 November, 2010

    The total income in 2009 of the Italian Newslot system reached 50% of the entire revenue of on-site gaming in Italy. All machines on site have now been replaced by new law games (as of 16 December 2009). The new games have more features and higher performance than previously and this has attracted more players. The trade association SAPAR reports that overall the new machines have also helped to drastically reduce the amount of illegal gaming in the country.

  • That’s the way to do it
    Published:  11 November, 2010

    Britain’s coastal resorts are at a low ebb, and their amusement centres are hurting from tight licensing restrictions as well as the towns’ slow decline. But things may not be quite as gloomy as they look, suggests Barnaby Page

  • Bowl ’em over
    Published:  11 November, 2010

    Bowling, like every leisure activity, is competing for consumer attention and spend with an ever-growing range of diversions. How can Britain’s bowling centres keep their customers and attract new ones?

  • Is it legal?
    Published:  11 November, 2010

    Every month Euroslot brings you the latest regulations, court rulings and government policies affecting the industry around the world

    CHINA

    China has clarified its laws on online gambling. Anyone running an Internet gaming operation can be jailed for up to three years, and fined. But operators of larger sites – which are defined in a number of ways, with criteria including a membership list of more than 120 or total volume over 300,000 yuan (about £28,000) – can go to prison for ten years. It appears that financial backers as well as actual operators can be punished. This year, authorities, say, nearly 8000 people have been arrested and almost £100,000 seized in China’s crackdown on Internet gaming.

  • Q&A: John Malin
    Published:  22 October, 2010

    He’s sold gaming technology around the world, earned an MBA, established his own consultancy – and made lots of coffee. We profile John Malin, whose new firm International Brand Gaming opened its doors in August

  • Netherlands Market Report
    Published:  22 October, 2010

    Although the Dutch authorities promised some measures to compensate the industry for the introduction of a new taxation system (29 % gambling tax over the cashbox replacing 15.97 % VAT over the cashbox) and the smoking ban in 2008 (1 July), these measures haven’t been realized yet (as of April 2010). It is foreseen that this will not be the case before 1 January 2011, more than two and a half years after the new taxation system was introduced!

  • Belgium Market Report
    Published:  22 October, 2010

    The new Belgian gaming Act has been enacted. It has a larger scope than previously and extends the licence system to betting, online gaming and games offered through media.

    Besides an extension of the responsibilities of the Gaming Board, the integration of betting and online gambling in the existing legislation forms the major part of the amendments. Some of the changes are also important to our industry, such as the obligation to actively operated a licence, the indexation of the average hourly loss, the competence of the Gaming Board to impose fines.

  • A DEAD CERT?
    Published:  22 October, 2010

    Amusement and gambling machines are helping to modernise Britain’s licensed betting offices – and adding impressively to the bookies’ bottom lines too, discovers Barnaby Page

    A visit to a British bookmaker was once a matter of scrawling the name of your favoured horse or dog on a betting slip, using a greasy pen the recent history of which was better left uninvestigated. But retail betting has been transformed by digital technology like every other sector, on both sides of the counter.

  • Is it legal?
    Every month Euroslot brings you the latest regulations, court rulings and government policies affecting the industry around the world
    Published:  22 October, 2010

    AUSTRALIA

    The Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation (VCGR) is reported to now be taking into account the views of specific communities when considering applications for gaming-machine licences within them. It recently rejected an application for 30 poker machines at the Beach Hotel in Jan Juc, citing a telephone survey conducted by the local council which showed that just 17 percent of residents were in favour. It is suggested that the VCGR is listening harder to grassroots voices after a court case in which the small town of Romsey successfully contested plans for poker machines in its only pub.

  • Q&A: Adam Steinberg
    Published:  08 September, 2010

    What really makes the top people in this sector tick? In the first of a series of profiles, we talk to the chairman of Embed International as he announces the firm’s merger with Playsafe

    How did you first get involved with the amusements industry?

    My father Malcolm Steinberg has been involved in the coin-op industry since 1958 so it was probably always destiny. My first exposure was working holiday jobs in my father’s LAI Group factory where games from U.S. and Japanese game companies were built under licence for the Australian market – videos, redemption and pinball.

  • Perfect harmony
    Published:  08 September, 2010

    Offering the right music isn’t just a way to please your customers – it can provide extra income too. Discover how the experts believe music can help build your business

    It’s one of the great universals: nearly everyone enjoys some form of music, and nearly every venue can benefit from the right soundtrack. But we’ve come a long way from the easy options of piped Muzak or a radio behind the cash desk. Today’s delivery systems for music are designed to precisely match the audio to the audience, and in many cases to generate a revenue stream too.

  • Is it legal?
    Published:  08 September, 2010

    Every month Euroslot brings you the latest regulations, court rulings and government policies affecting the industry around the world

    ARGENTINA

    Gaming Laboratories International will hold its Latin American regulators’ round table in Buenos Aires on 28 September. Topics to be covered will include money laundering, Internet gaming, lotteries and network security.

  • Gaming legislation is constantly changing
    every month Euroslot rounds up the new laws and amendments affecting the industry
    Published:  03 July, 2010

    THE NETHERLANDS

    The European Court of Justice delivered its rulings on two Dutch cases upholding the opinion of Advocate General Bot that a Member State can determine its gambling policy which includes the ability of the Member State to prohibit the operation of games of chance on the internet. In both rulings, which involved remote gaming operators Ladbrokes and Betfair, the court argued that restrictions on the freedom to provide services can be made if the objectives of the Member State are to protect consumers, prevent fraud and to preserve the public order. Additionally, the Court also expressed that having a licence to offer online or telephone gaming services in one Member State is not “sufficient assurance” that national consumers in another Member State will be protected. The ECJ findings mean that the Dutch national courts will likely deliver similar rulings on the cases. Source Euromat

  • Scandinavian Market Report
    Published:  03 July, 2010

    NORWAY

    The Ministry for Culture and Church Affairs in Norway has imposed some of the world’s strictest rules on video gambling machines in a drive to reduce the number of compulsive gamblers.

    Under the new regulations introduced last year, all gaming machines operated by Norsk Tipping AS, the Norwegian State-owned gaming company, are only accessible to pre-registered users via prepaid cards.

‘There will be limits on how much an individual can lose, they will be closed at night and there will be a cooling-off period after one hour of continuous play,’ said Trond Giske, Minister for Culture and Church Affairs.



    The Government had grown increasingly concerned about the rising number of Norwegians reportedly addicted to gambling machines and banned all privately owned machines in July 2007 while it looked for ways of better regulating them.

    Following the ban, the number of people telephoning a national gambling help line plunged from 2,276 in 2004 to 330 this year. The Government stated that the new terminals would be remote-controlled and strictly regulated to prevent people from developing a gambling problem. In addition, the machines will not take cash or credit cards and can only be used with a prepaid card sold by Norsk Tipping to registered players over the age of 18. 



    The system will also limit the amount that can be bet per game to ten dollars and set a loss limit of $80 per day and $440 per month per player even if they have more than one card.

Source: IGaming Business and RGC-news

  • IRELAND Market Report
    Published:  24 March, 2010

    The Irish Government has finally decided to tackle its outmoded gaming laws and has published the findings of its casino committee. Ireland has one of the oldest remaining gaming acts, dating back to the 1950s and the committee’s Chairman Michael McGrath pointed out that life has changed considerably in that time.

  • Terminal velocity
    The imminent launch of Italy’s first VLT networks could have repercussions far beyond the newly-licensed operators’ bottom lines. The casino market may be affected, too, reports Barnaby Page and what will become of slots?
    Published:  24 March, 2010

    Everyone should be happy. Italy’s government is nearly 1bn Euro richer, its leading slot  operators have secured all the licences to operate the potentially lucrative video lottery terminals (VLTs) which the country is rather suddenly permitting for the first time, and the citizens of Europe’s biggest gaming market have yet another avenue to pursue their craze.

  • Gaming legislation is constantly changing every month Euroslot rounds up the new laws and amendments affecting the industry
    Published:  24 March, 2010

    ALDERNEY

    While many European governments are introducing local licensing regimes for online gambling, the government of Alderney has been eager to transform its licensing framework to adapt to these changes. As such new regulations took effect on January 1, 2010. Source: GamblingCompliance.com

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