January 14, 2008 -- When you step into a casino in Las Vegas or thousands of other gambling venues around the world, you immediately face a bombardment of multimedia sounds and images from a vast collection of embedded devices, all carefully designed to provide entertainment and maximize stockholder revenue. These modern electronic gambling machines employ the latest high-performance computing and graphics technology along with built-in security to protect the system integrity and guard against hacking. In addition to the multitude of gaming devices, the industry has adopted electronics technology to provide real-time player tracking, surveillance, security, data analysis, and accounting. Casinos also depend on system manufacturers and embedded-system designers to provide a constant flow of increasingly complex gaming products to attract the next generation of casino patrons.
An enormous potential market exists in the gaming industry for embedded boards and devices. Experts predict that worldwide revenues from casino gambling will grow from almost $70 billion in 2004 to more than $100 billion in 2009. The United States alone generates approximately 60% of this revenue. As these revenues increase and new venues, such as American Indian casinos, proliferate, operators are investing in the latest electronic-gaming machinery to attract players from the competition. Other gambling operations, such as legal bookmaking, lotteries, pari-mutuel wagering, and even charitable bingo games, are also turning to embedded electronics to speed play and enhance information delivery.
By Warren Webb, EDN Technical Editor
This brief introduction has been excerpted from the original copyrighted article.
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