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iGaming market insights: Philippines’ smoothest online casino live dealer games in 2024 Q1

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iGaming in the Philippines is booming. Having surpassed pre-pandemic levels with a record $5.7 billion in gross gaming revenue (GGR) for 2023, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) is optimistic about the future. Pagcor further projects an increase in GGR to $6.7 billion in 2024 as the country positions itself as a potential frontrunner in Southeast Asia’s iGaming scene, even rivaling Singapore’s market share in the near future.

Market reports suggest that the boom is fueled by high-level factors like widespread mobile phone use, a rapidly evolving digital environment, and the easing of COVID-19 restrictions. But to enter this lucrative market, providers need on-the-ground insight that is up-to-date and accurate. TESTA’s crowdsourced testing and benchmarking service stands out as a trusted solution to gain accurate and up-to-date market insights.

In this article, we leverage TESTA’s crowdsourced testing capability to bring you the latest state of the market report for the online live dealer scene in the Philippines.

Live dealer games in Asia

According to a Stellar Market Research report, the Asia-Pacific online gambling market is projected to reach a staggering $72.81 billion by 2030, with an estimated 10.59% CAGR to fuel the impressive growth. Among the various segments of the iGaming market driving that growth, live dealer games in particular have revolutionized online casinos by offering a captivating blend of convenience and real-world thrills.

Unlike traditional online games that use simulated computer graphics, live dealers manage real equipment in real-time and stream the action to players around the world. Players witness every card dealt, roulette spin, or dice roll for a uniquely convenient yet immersive experience in high-definition. Examples like Playgon’s Vegas Lounge platform showcase the great potential of live dealer games to bolster a provider’s iGaming portfolio as they worked with TESTA to push their live dealer experience to the next level.

Recognizing the immense potential of live dealer games, TESTA is dedicated to empowering clients to excel ahead by helping them craft exceptional player experiences. As part of our effort to provide valuable insights, we invite you to explore how crowdtesting can be leveraged to gather on-the-ground market insights. Take a closer look at our market report highlighting live dealer game performance focusing on Ontario, and discover additional examples and insights within.

Background: state of live dealer games in the Philippines

Market projection

The Philippines boasts a vibrant population with a rising middle class that demands more from their entertainment. Coupled with a strong presence of traditional gambling culture, the country has unsurprisingly taken a liking to iGaming. As a market with a legal and regulated gambling and iGaming scene, the Philippines is no doubt ready and eager to welcome novel live dealer experiences.

Philippines iGaming market predictions for 2024
  • In 2024, the Online Gambling market in the Philippines is projected to generate US$680.00m in revenue.
  • With an expected annual growth rate (CAGR 2024-2028) of 5.40%, the market volume is poised to reach US$839.10m by 2028.
  • The Online Sports Betting market is estimated to reach US$339.40m in 2024.
  • The average revenue per user (ARPU) in the Philippines is forecasted at US$179.60 in 2024, with an expected user base of 4.9m by 2028 and a user penetration rate of 3.3% in 2024.

(Source: Statista, Market Insights, Online Gambling – Philippines)

However, challenges like internet infrastructure still remain. While the nation’s 4G coverage has reached 80% of the population with even 5G available in some areas, fixed broadband adoption remains low at around 33% of households, according to the World Bank. The reliance on inherently less stable and speedy mobile connections means that peak-hour traffic will pose significant network optimization challenges for providers, as internet speeds will slow to a crawl right when players are most likely to launch a game and start betting.

For providers interested in seeing how this internet infrastructure gap has played out in the Philippines’ slot games market, refer to our previous market report on the Philippines’ top slot games.

Test method and results

The Philippines’ top live dealer game providers: 

Philippines’ top live dealers

It’s worth noting that in our other live dealer benchmarks, we conducted tests for the top 6 games for the given region. However, the Philippines presented a unique scenario with only four games available for evaluation. This indicates a relative lack of live dealer game diversity in the Philippines, suggesting that the market may still be in its early stages and serves as a ripe opportunity for providers to establish their presence.

Test setup

Each tester was asked to conduct the tests on their own devices. All testers are asked to video record the tests and send the footage back alongside collected data.

Testers were asked to:

  • Enter the online casino website sportsbet.io
  • Login to their account
  • Search for the top live dealer games on the website with the region filter set to the Philippines
  • Measure the game load time

Once each tester completes their tests, they send the collected data and recorded video footage back to TESTA for analysis.

Test parameter: live dealer game load time

For this round of testing, we are solely interested in finding out how long it takes for a game to load. Since the test platform is a website, the load time calculates how long it takes from clicking on a game on the search page to the point at which the user connects to the live stream successfully.

Load time plays a pivotal role for iGaming titles as it impacts both player engagement and retention. Long load times tend to directly correlate with high player churn. To facilitate a smooth experience for players, load times should ideally be as short as possible.

Test data: live dealer game benchmark results in Philippines' online casino

Philippines’ live dealer average load time

The fastest load time:

    • Evolution’s Live Baccarat A with 9.16 sec

Most in need of optimization:

    • 7MOJO’s Dragon Tiger with 37.64 sec

 

Despite wide 4G network availability and 5G deployment in select areas, relying on mobile network connection as the main network connectivity option has clear shortcomings. Unlike broadband, fiber optic, or other forms of landline internet connection, mobile networks are inherently constricted by the time and frequency multiplexing limitations due to the shared physical medium on which all users in a given area must collectively share.

As a result, TESTA has found that the Philippines actually has the second worst load times among the tested Asian countries. This problem is further compounded by rural-urban development gaps in internet infrastructure, meaning that providers must put in extra effort to optimize their games for generally subpar internet speeds. TESTA recommends that providers adopt smart sliding window protocols and implement efficient data compression techniques to mitigate the impact of network constraints.

Conclusion

In the fast-moving iGaming industry, market research plays a critical role in helping businesses understand the landscape and stay ahead of the competition. The gathering of technical metrics like game load times through crowdtesting is the important basis on which providers can further optimize player experiences for growth and profit. TESTA’s crowdtesting model in particular can be highly effective as it offers a cost-efficient and accurate way to gather market insights.

The load speed distribution of live dealer games in the Philippines showcases exactly why actual data collected by TESTA Qrowd testers can reveal surprising points of entry for providers that know how to wield crowdtesting to their advantage. As a trusted industry partner, TESTA has also released other free-to-access market research reports on global markets to help iGaming providers find similar opportunities.

If you are interested in getting even more detailed market insights or customized solutions to benefit your iGaming business:

  • Contact us: Experience first-hand how TESTA’s crowdtesting can benefit your iGaming operations.
  • Find us on LinkedIn: Share the insights you’ve gained from TESTA’s analysis across the industry.
  • Read more articles: Stay informed about the latest trends and benchmarks in iGaming.

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