It's been revealed that Sony has been looking into joining the esport betting scene. According to the listing on PatentScope , Sony Interactive Entertainment filed the patent in 2019. The company has now decided to publish it this month after its recent purchase of Evo, the largest fighting game tournament in the world.
What is the Patent?
The new Sony betting service patent suggests that viewers of livestreamer esports would be able to bet on the outcome of the match while watching in real-time. It would work through an overlay with a user interface that users could access on top of the stream to place and see their bets. It's unclear if Sony had planned for this to work with existing streaming services or if they would need to host their own. Considering most global gambling laws, Sony would need to take care to ensure only those of ages can access and use it.
What could users Bet?
The patent states that “Wagers may be pecuniary, e.g., money or bitcoin, or may be non-pecuniary, e.g., game assets, digital rights, and virtual currency." This means that users could place bets with in-game currency and even in-game items using this betting system. There is speculation that “digital rights” could refer to NFTs but there's no confirmation of what it means. If users can bet these things then it's possible users could get these types of things back as bet winnings.
Will we ever see this Betting Service?
If Sony has decided to publish the patent now then there's a good chance they intend to follow it through. Their purchase of Evo also suggests that Sony is intending to use this betting service for the big fighting game tournament. There's no way to know if or when this will be arriving but hopefully Sony will have some updates in the future.
The company has also filed for several other patents recently. Including a system to connect struggling players with experts and a system to add trophies to older emulated games. It seems as though Sony has a lot of plans in the works right now which could make this upcoming E3 very interesting.
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