If you have been following the gambling regulatory changes sweeping Australia, then you know that some states are moving toward cashless gaming. New South Wales is now beginning its trials of cashless systems in the state.
The first trials are underway at Wests Newcastle. The three-month trial began on Saturday and is part of methods going into place to combat problem gambling and to improve anti-money laundering controls.
Cashless Trials Begin at Wests Newcastle
On Saturday, the first trials for cashless gambling began in NSW. According to reports, approximately 200 members at Wests Newcastle will take part in the trials. These trials are a result of sweeping regulatory changes resulting from investigations into Crown Resorts and Star Entertainment Group. Both casinos were found unsuitable to hold a license. Later, those casinos came to an agreement with regulators to stay in business.
NSW's first cashless gambling trial will begin today at Wests Newcastle with up to 200 members set to use technology which includes features to reduce risks of gambling harm and to protect against money laundering. pic.twitter.com/LpfUGS22r1
— Alliance for Gambling Reform (@ReformGambling) October 10, 2022
Cashless gambling systems are part of these new regulations. Casinos will impose a limit of $1,000 on cash transactions and also require players to hold a cashless gambling card. Kevin Anderson, the Minister for Hospitality and Racing, spoke on the new systems. He states, “The trial is part of an exciting new era where innovations such as digital wallets offer customers greater convenience and control over their spending and help venues and authorities identify suspected cases of money laundering.”
How the Trials Will Commence
According to Anderson, technology from Aristocrat Gaming will be on 36 pokies and gambling machines in the casino. They will use Bluetooth to communicate between a player’s mobile phone and the machine. Players can transfer money directly to the machine from their gaming wallet.
The digital wallet has several features. Players are able to set spending limits, set playing time limits, and access spending data in real time. They can also self-exclude from gambling directly from their wallet. What they cannot do is reload while on the gaming floor.
Players can also set limits on the frequency of play, session length, and the total bets placed during any given time. Also, players will only be able to change these settings once per day.
Four Companies Approved For Cashless Trials
While Aristocrat is the first company to be approved for cashless trials, they are not the only one company approved. IGT, Light & Wonder, and Utopia Gaming were also approved for cashless trials. It is unclear whether these companies will take part in trials at other locations.
Aristocrat Managing Director APAC David Ronson spoke on the trials. He states, “We’re proud to have proposed this trial, as we believe enabling cashless electronic gaming machine play payment solutions through patron’s mobile phones is an innovation that can help enhance the long-term sustainability and vibrancy of our industry
Congratulations Aristocrat teams in the #innovative launch of #digital #cashless wallet trial in NSW. Well done! #gaming #digitaltransformation https://t.co/TaTbVaKjTg
— Thomas Castleberry (@unlvpdt) August 18, 2022
Our PRIME Wallet solution offers patrons additional voluntary responsible gameplay tools, developed in consultation with customers, to help further empower patrons to actively manage their play in ways that suit them.”
Cashless trials in Australia will help regulators and casinos test out various technologies to see which works best. These technologies will help regulators achieve their goals of minimizing gambling hard and combating money laundering.
For players, they should prepare themselves for cashless gambling as it will be a requirement sooner rather than later. This means that players will need to carry proper identification. Also, players should be ready to show proof of how they earn money and how much they can afford to spend.
While these restrictions may seem a bit tedious to start, they are necessary due to the actions of casinos in the region. These new regulations will ultimately help to protect players and keep the casino accountable for their actions.
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