Harnessing Data-driven Video Technology
- By Jennifer Hones
- May 30, 2023
From Atlantic City to Las Vegas, casinos, gaming hotels and resorts are always looking for new ways to enhance the customer experience and differentiate themselves from their competitors. With more than 1,000 casinos across the United States, the challenge to foster customer loyalty and create positive brand preference is fierce.
Video surveillance has long been a cornerstone of casino security, but recent advancements in digital video technologies have enabled a range of new applications beyond traditional security purposes. By leveraging open platform, data-driven video management solutions, casinos can elevate their brand and create secure, efficient and pleasant gaming experiences that will attract new customers and keep existing patrons loyal.
New Horizons for Video Management
Casinos typically deploy large video systems that often serve two main functions. The first is to monitor gaming activities and ensuring regulatory compliance. Second, to provide for facility-wide safety, security and situational awareness, which can include operations management, parking management and other applications. With the integration of open platform VMS, and AI-driven analytics software, smart cameras, and sensors, video technology is amplified to improve the overall casino experience.
Casino, resort and convention properties are huge, with thousands of guests moving through the facility daily. A VMS integrated with video analytics software, audio detection, air quality sensors and other smart devices can become an efficient staff force multiplier. These integrated technologies can monitor, detect, and classify people, objects, and activities and flag the appropriate casino employees with any abnormalities in real time.
This comprehensive coverage enhances the efficiency of staff who simply cannot be everywhere at once. The analytic software can "learn" a camera scene and detect unusual activity, such as too many people gathering, unusual movements, and vehicles in restricted areas. Audio sensors can alert when noise thresholds are crossed, while air quality sensors can detect smoking and vaping in prohibited areas. From swiftly locating a guest or retrieving a lost item to de-escalating potentially unsafe situations before they arise, these capabilities all add up to a positive and enjoyable customer experience.
Parking Peace of Mind
A casino's parking lot is an initial touchpoint for many customers, and the experience sets the tone for the entire visit. Monitoring parking lots with video cameras is standard practice, but new video analytic software takes this process further, ensuring that customers and their vehicles are safe and secure from the moment they arrive.
Video systems equipped with smart devices and audio sensors can identify loiterers and potential threats, immediately alerting employees of suspicious activities. Video analytic software can distinguish between someone walking to their car and someone wandering in the parking lot or moving between multiple vehicles. By proactively identifying and addressing suspicious activity, the security team can monitor events and respond accordingly.
Using video analytic behaviors to monitor parking structures can even reduce the time customers spend looking for a parking spot. Staff can be alerted when a spot opens, directing customers to available spots and improving the customer experience.
New LiDAR Technology
A new technology finding application in casinos is LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging). Using lasers to measure distances, LiDAR can create 3D maps of casino floors, allowing for the monitoring of customer movement and foot traffic. The resulting data can be used to identify areas of the casino that may need additional staff or resources to improve customer service, as well as areas that may need additional lighting or other safety measures to reduce the risk of accidents and enhance customer safety.
Unlike facial recognition software, LiDAR does not capture any Personally Identifiable Information (PII), which ensures customer privacy. The software sees people as unique 3D entities that can be tracked, but their identity remains anonymous.
This game-changing technology, integrated with an open platform VMS, can be beneficial in detecting people loitering or groupings of people in areas where customers may require privacy, such as in restrooms or changing rooms. This can help ensure that customers always feel safe and secure within a casino.
Leveraging Video Data
Like any hospitality venue, casinos must constantly provide excellent guest services and experiences while balancing nearly countless other critical considerations such as security, operational efficiency and evolving industry requirements.
Casinos aren’t just about luck; they're about the experience, the thrill of the game and the feeling of being valued as a customer. That's why casinos are turning to cutting-edge technology to give their customers an experience that's not just fun but unforgettable. With the help of data-driven VMS and video analytics, casinos can analyze customer movements and gaming patterns to gain a deep understanding of what their customers want and need.
These insights allow management to make informed decisions that improve their facility’s services and operations. By using these integrated technologies, casinos can stay ahead of the competition and deliver a safe, secure, world-class customer experience that will keep their customers returning for more.
This article originally appeared in the May / June 2023 issue of Security Today.