More fruit machines and pool tables ‘isn’t a problem’

Fruit machine rental and pool table hire makes it easier and easier for venues of all kinds to offer these types of gaming machines to their customers.

Some people might consider that a cause for concern, as more gaming machines could reasonably be expected to lead to more gambling problems.

But research from the US has revealed not only that this is not the case, but that in truth, more exposure to gaming machines might be helping people to control their wagering activity.

Researchers from the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions found that, while the prevalence of fruit machines, pool tables and other gambling opportunities has increased in recent decades in the US, problem gambling rates have not.

In fact, just 3.5% of people report problem gambling – which can include just thinking about gambling a lot – and severe pathological gambling affects only around 1-2% of the population.

Meanwhile, the number of days on which people had gambled in the previous 12 months dropped from 59.9 in 1999-2000 to 53.7 in 2011-13.

The reason might be that, with gaming machines much more commonplace than in previous decades, punters are familiar with seeing them and with controlling their wagering – helping to keep gambling problems in check, and arguably making more fruit machines a good thing for all concerned.

Pool table hire helps postal workers do their bit

Royal mailPool table hire is allowing Royal Mail employees in Northampton to raise money for charity – simply thanks to the coins they put in the slot in order to play.

A typical paid-for pub pool table was put in place at the South Midlands Mail Centre in Swan Valley back in April and has proved a big hit in its first six months.

During that time, more than £1,000 has been raised for charities including Guide Dogs for the Blind, Marie Curie, Cynthia Spencer Hospice, Poppy’s Place, Alzheimer’s Research UK and Cancer Research UK.

The decision to use pool table hire as a charitable venture was taken by the Communications Workers Union, and the employees at the flagship mail centre have been allowed to choose which charities half the money should go to.

Gareth Eales, CWU area representative at the South Midlands Mail Centre, said: “I am delighted so much money has been raised in such a short space of time for good causes.

“The pool table was put in to give our members something to do during their rest periods and the fact we can raise money for charities at the same time is fantastic.”

How pool table hire can support active ageing

pool table hirePool table hire could have a significant role in helping older people stay fit, now that “old age has been cancelled”.

Aske Juul Lassen at the University of Copenhagen’s Center for Healthy Aging has published a PhD thesis called Active Ageing and the Unmaking of Old Age, which has been making headlines in recent weeks.

Significantly, he says the perceptions of old age have changed – and far from expecting to be sedentary in retirement, people are now expected to stay fit and healthy “until the day we die, in good health, at the age of 90”.

One way to help people to do this could be through pool table hire, and the study focused on one group of men aged up to 95 who meet four times a week to play billiards.

“Billiards is, first of all, an activity that these men thoroughly enjoy and that enhances their quality of life while immersing them in their local community and keeping them socially active,” Mr Lassen said.

He went on to outline how the stop-start nature of playing a game of billiards allows for regular rest and recovery – something that is also true of pool and snooker.

We recently supplied a pool table to a retirement home near Wigan and were delighted to hear how it has significantly improved the residents’ lives. The evenings that were previously taken up with watching TV now have the alternative of a game of pool. Then, the money that the residents earn from the profit share is spent on providing drinks and food for Saturday night’s killer pool competition and loud music. Not your average retirement home!

So your pub pool table could be doing more than just bringing in young enthusiasts for the game; it could be helping your older patrons stay healthy for longer into their retirement years too.

The next generation of gaming machine hire

gamemachine

As customer tastes change, slot machine hire keeps pace with the demands of the market – and sometimes that hurts, like when we had to decommission a Bar 7 slot machine in Preston last month after many years of faithful service.

But times march on. An Associated Press report recently noted how generational gaps can mean different players want different things from gaming machines.

For older players, traditional slot machine hire – press a button to spin the reels – is often enough, but younger players seem to be looking for more. This has lead to the introduction of video gaming machines where the variety of games is almost limitless.

The introduction of video gaming machines has lead to some interesting developments across the pond, where America has created games where the player wins the right to play through their own skill, but their chance of winning is still random.

For example, you might have to complete a challenge, or answer a question correctly, to earn the right to roll a virtual dice, spin a wheel, or play a conventional slot machine governed by chance.

The AP adds that reaching both generations is also possible in traditional slot machines, where rather than changing the gameplay, the game itself is simply themed around a movie or comicbook franchise that appeals to younger players. In that regard, I think the Americans are way behind the times. How many popular culture themed UK games can you think of? Here’s a few to get you started:- Aliens, Star Wars, Dr Who, Coronation Street, I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here and of course, Deal Or No Deal.

In either instance, it’s a reminder of how gaming machine manufacturers are always ahead of the curve – making sure that each new machine continues to attract players of all ages to put their coin in the slot.

Manco Automatics Ltd
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