As the great Bard foresaw the change from analogue to digital machines in the Tempest and wrote:

“Be not afeard; the isle is full of noises, Sounds and sweet airs, that give delight and hurt not. Ready to drop upon me that, when I waked, I cried to dream again”

It’s true! This sceptered Isle is full of positive noises at long last! Cash in Ticket Out and Cashless payments are indeed like sweet airs to the embattled world of tenanted pub gaming. There’s a huge opportunity in quickly embracing these developments for tenanted pubs.

It’s going to be an interesting EAG show this year and one that we have all been waiting for, for many years. If 2017 was the year of reluctant acceptance by some of the new digital era, then 2018 is the year to grasp it; understand it; simplify it and promote viable access for tenanted pubs.

It can be a painless process for those who want to engage. Going digital and cashless is not going to hurt, it is going to evolve. It won’t be for everyone immediately and there will always be a place for analogue in some pubs. The experts are out there, they have demonstrated their technical expertise and commitment and opened their wallets and there’s going to be some truly innovative cash management proposals to see.

Gaming operators and manufacturers will be able to retain their individuality; their brand identity and their income performance credentials by doing what they are exceptional at doing. They don’t need to be distracted by trying to resolve connectivity for example or worrying about “desires” from different retailers. They can become un-paralleled in content management; auditing; and tenant and customer education and relationships. Once it is plugged in, switched on and reliably connected that is what will grow the income for all.

I think the time has come for the tenanted pub gaming industry to wake up to, and embrace a common approach to a digital gaming solution, free to choose the operator who provides the best understanding and development of the digital offer and has an empathy with their business goals and ethics. Pubco’s and regional brewers acting in one direction will give certainty to the supply chain; result in a viable network and grow income whilst retaining their brand individuality.

Let’s not be Upstart Crows about it. The solutions do not need to be beautified, just practical, reliable and cost-effective. Let’s make implementation and the platform as simple as possible; educate and train the tenant and account manager alike; and let’s dream of what now can be in tenanted pubs.

Procrastination and vacillation now needs to be outed!