The Rise of the Real Money Gaming - A Revolution in Digital Entertainment

The steep GST rate was seen as a problem for real-money gaming in India. It was estimated that real-money gaming’s massive presence of 84% could come down to 75% this year due to the tax burden. However, the honourable Supreme Court of India is considering a relook at the GST rate on online games like Rummy. The dip in percentage is more than compensated by the robust industry CAGR of 15% expected till FY28.

In the meantime, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) is focused on streamlining the industry, weeding out inconsistencies and promoting the organised online games industry. This will ensure that, in the future, if you play 13-Card Rummy on a recognised platform, it will be in a secured and monitored ecosystem.

The Rise and Rise of RMG as a Mode of Entertainment

When the gaming industry in India grew to ₹181 billion in 2022, it was expected to reach ₹269 billion by the end of 2024. It had already surpassed the film industry as the fourth most popular entertainment industry in India. At around 83-84% revenue share, real-money gaming is the real deal in the Indian online games industry. From a financial perspective, the growth of real-money gaming is closely monitored to gauge the growth of the gaming industry in general.

It is estimated that around 100 million Indians are online on any given day, playing games. 90 million Indians pay to play, a figure that mirrors the domination of real-money gaming in the gaming sector. The GST burden has largely been borne by the big players in the industry, reducing their margins. However, the growth remains on track with increasing gamer participation, and as a result, the tax implications are expected to have a limited impact on the expansion of the industry.

The Nationwide Cascading of Real-Money Gaming

Real-money gaming is no longer limited to the urban centres of India. With an astonishing 94% of Indian gamers preferring mobile gaming, the gaming community in India is as widespread as the sales data of smartphones in India. This is confirmed by reports that suggest that 60% of smartphone gamers play daily, and 90% of real-money gamers engage in gaming at least once a week.

However, smartphone penetration is not the only indicator of the nationwide cascading of real-money gaming in India. A recent study conducted by Meta revealed that 43% of real-money gamers live outside the metro cities of India. Meta itself has a strong role to play in the popularity of real-money gaming as well. Three out of four real-money gamers discover new games and purchase them through social media platforms, 90% of which are through Meta platforms.

The gaming community in India, as a whole, is growing at the fastest rate in the world. The 568 million strong community, downloading 9.5 billion games in 2023, makes India the biggest gaming market in the world. An estimated 144 million of these gamers are connected to real-money gaming. By 2028, the gaming community can have as many as 916 million Indians, 240 million of them engaged in real-money gaming. The gaming ecosystem could be worth $6 billion by then, with real-money gaming continuing to contribute around 79% of it.

Techs That Are Adding Entertainment Value

Online games owe their existence to the innovations in digital technologies. And its future growth largely hinges on the technological advancements made in the digital world. These technological breakthroughs are making online games like Rummy more secure. Fraud detection, foul-play violation and bot-usage detection are some of the areas where technology is aiding gaming platforms. This is helping the platforms to provide a secure gaming ecosystem. Among leading technologies, blockchain is improving the security around transactions and making the gaming outcomes verifiable.

Technological advancements are expected to greatly enhance the entertainment value of online gaming, particularly real-money gaming. The integration of augmented reality and virtual reality is improving the immersive experience in gaming, while cross-platform compatibility allows players to switch devices and platforms while maintaining a smooth transition in the gaming experience.

Thanks to digitalised communication, rummy, fantasy sports, and poker platforms can now facilitate lively social interactions with features that allow gamers to connect, interact, and exchange ideas on the platform in real-time.

Racing Away in Digital Entertainment

Real-money gaming remains at the forefront of the gaming revolution that is sweeping the nation. It is fast becoming a phenomenon that has attracted global attention, catapulting India into the centre stage of the global gaming market. The use of immersive technologies and cutting-edge innovations has made online gaming the next level of entertainment. Your 13-card rummy game on Playship, for instance, can now be a whole new experience, with the cream of the gaming community participating and the best of technology put into practice. The game is truly on in Indian real-money gaming.

The News Minute