Europeans alone consume around 40% of the world’s chocolate eaten every year, and 16 of the top 20 chocolate consuming countries are European. But a chocolate of a non-consumable type has teamed up with a San Francisco based online gaming company to offer a tasty treat of a different sort to the UK online gambling community. Mobile gaming firm Digital Chocolate has partnered up with Betable to launch a social online casino in the U.K with a pay for play gambling option.
This is the first move by the sweetly named Digital Chocolate to harness their sizable free play casino player pool for the potentially profitable and lucrative real money market. Social networking is perfect for free play casino games, and once a customer enjoys a particular company’s user interface and interaction with friends and other online players, the leap to playing for money is a no-brainer for plenty of those players, once the pay for play gambling option has been presented to them.
Another reason for the decision is the extremely competitive nature of the casual social casino game marketplace. And the UK is one of the first markets where social gaming has already begun to offer “play for money” options, with Zynga delivering online poker to the United Kingdom last month. Betable, when speaking of the partnership with Digital Chocolate, said that their aim is to “disrupt traditional online gambling” by making the conversion of free play online gamers to pay for play repeat customers “extremely easy for companies.”
Jason Loia is the Chief Operating Officer for Digital Chocolate, a San Mateo, California company, and he said in a recent interview with GamesBeat that it is the goal of his company to move quickly into social mobile gaming, and “part of our strategy is real money gaming.” He went on to state that the real money gambling efforts of his company will be pushed aggressively this year and that they are also looking at other markets aside from the United Kingdom, including those states in the United States which legalize some form of online gambling.
The first combination of Internet goods and real money gambling for Digital Chocolate is the new Slots! Pocket U.K. game that will first launch on Apple devices. The real money slots game will be joined soon by a real money blackjack social networking game also for the iOS platform. And the Slots! casino game is not real money only, but delivers free play as well, with an option to bet real money or virtual currency and chips. The two companies have been working on an entry into real money social gambling since December of last year, and to speed up the process, Digital Chocolate took one of their existing social slots game and made modifications