Betting at the bookmakers is often a solitary practice (not just because you are trying to get a sneaky bet in before the missus expects you in after work). Betting in a bricks and mortar bookies simply isn’t a social activity, other than to brag about a win to your friends. Each gambler plays on their own and the wins or losses of any other gambler do not affect your bets, unlike in poker for example where one player’s gain inevitably means another’s loss. The question is, how can bookmakers, who provide a service that is for individual use, hope to become part of the social gaming world and catch up with the rest of the gambling world?
Advancements have been made towards converging sports betting and social elements with chat feeds and tweets enriching existing betting experiences, however to create something where social gaming and traditional sports betting co-exist together looks to be a few years down the line at least, this is partly due to the fact that providing live prices and odds to mobile apps and bookmaker websites is a complex process that operators typically outsource using different vendors to provide all of the different elements, starting with live odds, working them into a sports betting platform and then distributing them to websites and apps that have been created by another company again! Having so much of the technology that makes sports beting online out or their control it is impossible to expect the Bookmakers or operators of these betting sites to be able to research much into product innovation in this sector.
Where then can Bookmakers find someone who can scale the walk between sports betting and social gaming? How can watching sports and betting be combined into a social activity? Perhaps talents in the game developer community will see what the next steps existing attempts at social sports betting need to take to move it to the next level, or come up with something entirely original that will pull sports betting forward into the social gaming world and get this new type of social sports betting on the market, but not for a few years yet by most reckoning.