7 August 2014 (UK): The Gambling Business Group led by CEO Peter Hannibal, has achieved a major coup. Just one month since it was formally launched at the beginning of July, the strategic gaming body, through its' Machines Sub-Group (MSG) has produced two key documents that form the technical standards for a long awaited UK Machines Cashless & Ticketing Protocol. One is for general Web Services and the other extends the ccTalk technical standards that enable compatibility with current UK Machines. The documents are available to any organisation that has an interest in either operating such a Machines Ticketing solution or providing compatible components, systems and/or solutions.
Most of the UK's Machines Manufacturers, ticket printer suppliers, note validator and peripheral manufacturers, systems providers and solutions suppliers have been involved in the process, including Bell Fruit Games, Barcrest/SG Gaming, Project Coin, Playsafe Embed, Future Logic, Eurocoin, GeWeTe, Innovative Technologies, Astra Games, Merkur-Blueprint and with particular help and support from Rob Wheeler of Future Logic and Dave Bush from Aardvark.
According to Peter Hannibal such a collaboration of technical knowledge and insight is unprecedented in the UK machines Industry. He explained: "For many years UK machines Operators have looked upon other jurisdictions who operate TiTO and similar systems with envy. Dreams of lower service demands, reduced machines floats, zero refills and income improvements remained as just dreams. With the exception of the Casino Sector, the two significant blocks that stood in the way of the rest of the UK adopting a machines ticketing system had been the prohibitive cost - including licensing and the heterogeneous technology used by manufacturers."
He added: "The documents are now in circulation and are intended to be used by the industry as a set of rules for Cashless and Ticketing. Operators can at last start looking at introducing ticketing to their businesses over the coming months. With the freedom to go to any supplier or provider of systems, components or turn-key solutions, I am confident that we have enabled this to be a competitive situation for buyers. The individuals that have contributed their time, efforts and resource to make this Protocol possible should be recognised as 'rainmakers'. In an Industry that has taken on a divisive stance for so long it has been a delight to deliver this Protocol and I genuinely hope that it is a sign that our Industry is turning a political corner."