Progressive Gaming International (formerly Mikohn Corporation) announced last week that Nevada regulators have approved a "wireless" version of its Rapid Bet Live sports betting system for field trial at the Palms Resort Casino.
Rapid Bet Live is a "real time" system that allows for live proposition wagering throughout the course of a sporting event. For instance, a baseball bettor may bet on the outcome of an at-bat — hit, out, walk, etc. — via a computer system tuned into the game.
The Palms sports book earlier this year installed several Rapid Bet Live stations, which are usually well-played by patrons.
The "wireless" version will give patrons the flexibility of placing wagers on a hand-held, mobile gaming device from specified networked areas in the casino, in addition to playing from fixed terminals within the sports book.
The wireless version will not allow patrons to access or place wagers on the Internet. Bets will only be placed and accepted over the sports books’ intranet — a local area network which employs a secured 802.11x method of communication (a secured closed loop).
"This is a major milestone four our company’s wireless technology initiatives and sports betting products," said Russ McMeekin, Progressive Gaming’s chief executive officer. "We believe casino operators’ sports books will benefit from implementing both the ”˜wired’ and ”˜wireless’ versions of Rapid Bet Live by creating an exciting new sports book experience which will lead to incremental revenue growth opportunities."
The wireless version may actually be more popular than its wired counterpart because it would be easier to install for the casino, and more versatile for the patron who doesn’t want to be tied to a computer terminal.
"Based upon initial customer reactions both in Nevada and worldwide in those jurisdictions where sports betting is legal, we believe the ”˜wireless’ version of Rapid Bet Live will have great appeal due to its considerable ease of implementation," said vice president of sales and marketing Bob Parente.
Palms officials said that, since Rapid Bet was installed last spring, the computer stations — about 12 that fill the book’s first four rows — are usually filled to capacity during major sporting events.
"The possibilities are really limitless," said Rich Baccellieri, Palms director of race and sports. "The key is finding the betting opportunities that will suit the player, whether he’s watching baseball, golf or football."
Rapid Bet is similar to account wagering, in which players sign up and post a deposit with the sports book, then log onto a Rapid Bet computer with an assigned password.
With wireless systems, the sports book can sign up many more than the 12 betting stations currently available.