Bingo is like a yo-yo. One minute, it was the very resemblance of a British institution, and the next, it tailed off dramatically. Ever since the noughties, the game has been growing in popularity, with three million people estimated to play throughout the UK. However, while it’s common to see smartphone apps and halls advertising bingo services, a console game version has been severely lacking.
This is surprising considering that the game could easily make the transition, what with the link between online casinos, traditional gamers, and mobile players. Yet, it appears as if the gaming community will have to wait a while longer before any big announcements are made. It’s hard to predict the future, but here are the reasons why a console video game is unlikely.
A Mobile Platform
The biggest reason why bingo’s transition doesn’t appear to be in the pipeline is the success of the game’s current model. Although it experienced a huge drop off after the boom of the 1960s, the early 2000s and 2010s have been good to the industry, with online platforms providing users with a portal to enjoy bingo services without leaving the house.
Today, 44% of people gamble within a two-week period online, which highlights the power of mobile gaming. Not only that, but the demographics of bingo players are changing, with the biggest age group between 25 and 34 (accounts for 28% of players). This isn’t a coincidence, and neither is the rise of online casinos, the main providers for online bingo activities, with the likes of bingo.betfair.com offering everything from free spins to a range of different games, including Lucky’s Fish & Chips and Slingo Reel King.
With the industry at an all-time high, among players and providers, and with bingo making up a significant chunk of the profits, it would be unexpected for the industry to switch strategy and change course.
Traditional Demographics & Smartphones
Younger people are flocking to the game, but there is still a base of older players who love the game and spend a significant sum of money. Bingo would alienate these people with a console video game in a way it doesn’t with its mobile platform. This is because inews.co.uk reports that one in five people aged over 75 personally uses a smartphone.
Also, over 50% of the same age group has broadband access in their homes. Console figures for older demographics are lower, however, with aarp.org reporting that 44% of 50-plus adults play them. This is a considerable increase, but it isn’t enough to warrant a move to the likes of PlayStation and Xbox for traditional bingo players just yet.
Video Game Fads
Video games flourish by promoting the latest technological releases that excite audiences. Recently, the role of virtual reality gaming has increased in demand, with fool.com highlighting how it’s impacting the major console giants’ strategies. However, bingo is a different proposition because the game has stayed the same for decades.
To change up for the sake of VR or AR could ruin the experience in a way that doesn’t happen with mobile bingo offerings. After all, people can continue to get an authentic experience thanks to live dealer cameras and live chat options.
The gaming world is a funny place where anything can happen. However, with the health of the game, as it is now, coupled with the role of smartphones for emerging and traditional bingo players, a console video game seems unlikely.
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