In 2019, the widely popular gaming and entertainment company Sony Interactive filed a patent that could see users bet on esports using physical currency and in-game items. But it was the month of May 2021 when the company published the news. The exciting move towards combining esports with gambling theoretics would allow fans viewing live stream esports events to bet on the tournaments whilst watching them play out in real-time.
With Sony publishing the patent, it could genuinely pave the way for PlayStation users to wager on competitive esports events with a selection of currencies to use, including bitcoin.
The Patent Itself
The companies patent has been named ‘E-sports Betting Platform’. And while this particular patent doesn’t refer to the PlayStation wholly, it references bitcoin and cryptocurrencies as a possible tool for betting enthusiasts. To be specific, the patent states, “wagers may be pecuniary, e.g., money or bitcoin, or maybe non-pecuniary, e.g., game assets, digital rights, and virtual currency”. Users will bet on live esports events in real-time, known to the gambling world as in-play betting. In addition, the patent does suggest PlayStation, and Sony products will be utilized; “game consoles such as Sony PlayStation… virtual reality (VR) headsets, augmented reality (AR) headsets”, and much more.
The odds for wagers placed will be calculated using machine learning, focused on the play history of the players involved or their performance during the current game. As mentioned, the patent is not exclusive to PlayStation, and references are made “game consoles such as Sony PlayStation or a game console made by Microsoft or Nintendo or other manufacturers virtual reality headsets, augmented reality headsets, portable televisions, portable computers such as laptops and tablet computers, and other mobile devices including smartphones” This implies that if the service does come to fruition, it will be seen on platforms beyond the PlayStation.
Sony Join the Players in Crypto and Gaming Image
“Gaming” is a broad term, but gaming worlds are colliding with competitive esports, traditional gambling, and wagers. The continuation of crypto and blockchain in these areas will now expand the reach of potential custom. Earlier this year, Resorts World Las Vegas paired with cryptocurrency exchange Gemini.
The timing of said patent is, however, interesting. The release of Sony’s PlayStation 5 in 2020 is still under massive demand as stock shortages continue; in addition, Sony recently brought the esports tournament organizer Evo. The Evolution Championship Series (EVO) is the most popular fighting game tournament, hosting some of the biggest titles, such as Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat.
Sony is busy filing patents recent, as the company plans to provide a help system for struggling players and a system that could give older games emulation with trophy support.
Bear in mind that companies file patents regularly, but hardly any of those patents amount to anything. With that said, the PlayStation 5 console backlog will continue into 2022, and Sony could well be looking for innovative ways to attract fans into the esports community.