Lottery 2.0 – The Next Generation Lottery

Fourteen years ago this month the first legal lottery ticket online was processed. With the emerging web in the mid-1990s, few lotteries saw a potential to offer lottery and sports betting products to its players. Iceland offered sports betting to the public as early as November 1996 with Finland following shortly there after. Despite the success of these lotteries as well as the other Nordic lotteries, most lotteries in the world have not even today, 14 years later, taken the steps to move their products online. But this is changing. The future of lotteries is online. It is time for the state run lotteries to adopt the next generation lottery products and go online. Lottery 2.0, the next generation lottery.

Lotteries were among the first companies to offer networked solutions. The true revolution came with the online retail terminals allowing instant purchase of tickets and digital processing at the speed of light. However, these systems are proprietary, non-standard, expensive and limited. While they work fine for ticket processing, they are not capable of offering the new generation of entertainment games. And this is where the web comes into play by using desktop computers, laptops, netbooks, tablet, and smartphones.

Now is the time for online. The players have moved online where they spend time playing games, reading news, books, communicating and collaborating. Any digital medium that uses physical distribution is bound to lose to the global network. With this form of medium comes a huge opportunity. Basically this is all about two things: entertaining games and socializing.

The new games are not about tickets. They are about entertainment. They are also about playing together. As an example, sports betting is very social. The moment of the game, anticipation, winning and loosing, sharing experiences. Nobody wants to watch the final alone. The same applies to the games. People share their passion for the game, for the risk and for the winnings.

My company, Betware, started building enterprise lottery solutions in 1995, or fifteen years ago. This system was built ground up as a lottery system. We have over time carefully added to this new solutions following strong design discipline that has never compromised our design philosophy of good software design. We have a world-class product, and in my mind the best lottery enterprise system on the planet.

The world has changed (#twhc). Lotteries, state owned or private companies with licence to offer legal wagers need to move to next generation of games. These games are online where the new generation of players are. The opportunity is now.