The fact that gambling and wagering on sports are some of the top pastime activities of people living Down under should be of no surprise to anyone anymore. Australians have an innate love for wagers and sports in general that has been going on for many generations and which does not seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. In fact, at the moment, more than three-thirds of Aussies engage in one form of gambling or another on a yearly basis. Most of them prefer online pokies gameplay on desktop computers, laptops, or mobile devices on the go, while others choose to physically visit glamorous land casinos. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the planet, Australia also had to find its own solutions and coping mechanisms and this meant brick-and-mortar gambling establishments closing down temporarily and lots of restrictive socialising measures.
In 2019, the Aussie gaming industry totalled $3.16 billion in revenues, which was its first-ever recorded drop since 2012. Nonetheless, the numbers were still impressive and the decrease in sales merely followed the global trend, with IGEA projections speaking about a rebound in 2020, given all the game releases that will be completed by the end of the year. Also, special attention has been given to video games as a means for families and friends to keep in touch during the COVID-19 pandemic that has taken over the world. Let us take a look at a few more interesting figures regarding the Australian gaming industry.
Australian Gaming by Sector
- The Video Gaming Industry: In-game play and total video game revenue is expected to reach US$479 million by the end of 2020. The revenue is projected to grow by 2.5 percentile points per year during 2020-2025. This should help the video gaming market reach US$541 million by the year 2025.
- Download Games is the second-largest market in Australia and 2020 projections speak of US$194 million. As for the average revenue per player, statistics speak of US$20.75, with user penetration reaching close to 28% and up to 29% in the following 5 years.
- Online Games Segment: The number of users is expected to amount to 4.62 million by the end of 2020 and 7.5m by 2025 in Australia. The growth is exponential and easy to explain, given the nation's predilection for gaming and their undying love for sports with sports betting and gaming on mobile accounting for some of the most popular activities in the country.
- Mobile Gaming: By the end of 2020, Australia is expected to have more than 7 million mobile game players.
The Effects of Covid-19 on Gaming in Australia
In June and July 2020, a survey that revolved around the gambling habits of Aussies during the Covid-19 pandemic showed that 26% of respondents engaged in more online sports betting focusing on Australian events, compared to the pre-COVID months. Gamblers passionate about online slot machines engaged in their favourite pokies games 19.6% more often since the beginning of the pandemic, while more than 16 per cent played as often as before the pandemic. When it comes to real money casino games, 14.5 per cent of Australians engaged in more fun gameplay on their computers, with 16.6 per cent stating they maintained the same level of interest for this form of entertainment.
Australian Gaming in the Future
Given the amazing technology developments, including 5G and cloud gaming and the brand new games and platforms, the industry is expected to attract even more gamers in the upcoming years. Video games are the most successful and popular means of entertainment in the country at the moment, since they offer high levels of entertainment, the opportunity to socialise with friends, and also get access to a special form of education to players in all walks of life, all age groups and belonging to all social backgrounds. Future projections also speak of 6.9 million game downloads projected to be completed by the end of the year.
Without a doubt, the biggest revenues are triggered by online gambling, which includes anything ranging from betting on sports to playing pokies, online poker, or the lotteries. The generated revenues revolve around 75% of the total income generated by gaming in Australia and online casinos can also be accessed and used by foreign players in other parts of the world, outside of the country. This automatically means that the profits are practically limitless and the industry will keep growing in the upcoming years, especially given the quality and allure of real money casinos and their appeal to players all around the globe.
Gaming at Land-Based Casinos
Land-based casinos, in general, are able to trigger excellent growth opportunities as they can bring back to life lots of otherwise dull or even dead urban areas that have lost their appeal to tourists or the locals. The great majority of casinos are built with the aim of attracting more tourists to the region and since Australia is known as being the haven for passionate gamblers and punters, there is no wonder gambling tourists love to plan their vacations here every year. They spend around $4,900 on average on a single trip here and the numerous workplaces that the gambling industry generates in the country should also be taken into consideration when speaking about the financial gaming numbers Down Under.
The hotels, shops, and restaurants used by domestic and foreign players located near their favourite casinos also generate some important revenues for the gambling industry in Australia and local city budgets in particular. Until the COVID-19 restrictions will be completely gone and our lives will go back to the normal we were used to, online casinos will continue to be the main point of attraction for players Down Under.