LibraryblogThree key trends driving the future of online gaming

Three key trends driving the future of online gaming

Over the course of three decades in the industry, Sue Schneider has seen internet gaming evolve from something of a ‘Wild West’ to the more corporate sector it is today. She offered us her thoughts on the issues that matter for the future of online gaming in her native US and beyond.

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Chris Hooper
Director of Content at
July 13, 2023
On this page
A responsible approach to advertising
 Improving the industry’s image
Seeking international growth

Listen to the full conversation with Sue and explore more Veriff Voices podcast episodes.

While she may resist being described as an ‘industry legend’, there can be no argument that Sue Schneider is one of the world’s leading experts on the internet gaming industry. A frequent speaker at international gaming conferences, Sue has provided testimony on online gaming to the United States Senate and House of Representatives, as well as the US National Gambling Impact Study. In a recent conversation for our Veriff Voices podcast series, she identified three key themes that will be critical to the future of the sector.

A responsible approach to advertising

Sue highlights heavy advertising by internet gaming companies as something that could prove counterproductive in the long term. She says that in the US, even in her home state of Missouri where sports betting has yet to be made legal, advertising for online betting is becoming ubiquitous around sporting events. 

“That's been an issue since sports betting got started up because there is a race to build market share,” she comments. “When you're watching playoff games you are inundated with them.”

Sue agrees that the image this portrays plays into the hands of the industry’s political and media opponents. However, in the US at least, it’s unclear how a degree of restraint will be imposed. 

“In the UK, in Australia, you have an advertising standards federal board,” says Sue. “We don't really have the equivalent of that, at least on a federal level. So that's why it's falling, I think, to some state-regulators to try to put some parameters on what's going to happen.”

Unfortunately, her experience during her eight-year stint chairing the Interactive Gaming Council leaves her doubtful about the sector’s ability to improve the situation by policing itself.

“I was hoping that we could self-regulate enough, but I don't even know how you would accomplish that, honestly. I mean, you'd really have to have a lot of agreement among at least the leading operators. And I don't see that happening.”

“I think the American Gaming Association has done some standards related to it, and I'm sure there have been attempts that I'm not privy to, but it's just hard and we're going to end up dealing with the backlash from that as an industry.”

Sue points out that in some countries the advertising of internet gaming has been completely banned – a warning to the sector if a degree of restraint can’t be achieved.

 Improving the industry’s image

Sue agrees that building trust is fundamental to improving the public image of internet gaming.

“It's key to the sector and to those transactions, whether it's with regulators, whether it's with customers, whether it's with partners,” she comments. “If you don't have that, there's really no forward movement, especially because we're in a ‘vice’ industry where people are going to be skeptical and think that, you know, everyone is – maybe one of my favorite Australian words – ‘shonky’.”

She’s the first to admit that the industry hasn’t always been a paragon of virtue.

“I mean, frankly, in the past it has been bad at times, especially pre-regulation when you were just in some other jurisdictions,” she comments. “I don't want to point fingers, but Costa Rica, that's been a hub for a lot of sportsbooks in the past, they've never had any gaming regulations.”

“The flipside of that is there were a lot of companies that did it right. Otherwise, they would never have built up a business as successful as they have been. But, you know, when everybody's really kind of on their own, you're going to have some people that take advantage of it.”

With this in mind, Sue sees more widespread regulation as positive for the industry.

“I think in some ways, the increased level of regulated gaming jurisdictions has probably helped with that some. But it's a critical one.”

Sue feels that certain verticals have historically had a bigger problem than others in reaching public acceptance. She points out that while 36 US states have legalized sports betting, only seven currently allow i-gaming. She thinks people tend to feel less familiarity with activities such as online casinos and therefore find them more threatening in an everyday context.

“People have had to get used to the fact that you're now doing this on your phone or you're doing it on your laptop, you're doing it everywhere. So, I think that's the fear – more on the problem gaming side.”

Seeking international growth

In terms of growing the internet gaming sector internationally, Sue has no doubts about where the most interesting opportunities lie.

“I do think LatAm is really going to be the next one to watch,” she states. “Southeast Asia seems to have taken off some. But we ran an event in Macao for a number of years, and we always kind of joked that we were going to have to get paper bags with eyes cut out for our attendees because, you know, it was pretty questionable at that point in time and people weren't really that interested in being very visible about it.”

Meanwhile, in regions like Africa and India Sue agrees that rates of internet adoption and smartphone access, along with the viability of payment infrastructure, are barriers to growth.

“We’ve been exploring some stuff related to Africa,” says Sue. “It's got its own challenges, especially because it has all these countries that again are all looking at it a little bit differently. So, I think that one's coming, but probably not before we see things really take off in Latin America.”

Veriff Voices

Listen to the full conversation with Sue and explore more Veriff Voices podcast episodes.

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