Japanese market forces are trying to bring in electronic money. Will 100 yen arcades, which have continued for 40 years, come to an end?
JAEPO (Japan Amusement Expo) was held this year from February 13 to February 14. At the Taito booth, an engineer explained a new payment system. Let’s outline the particulars of this new design and discuss it.
Users were allowed to experience using the new system at a test initially held at the Taito Station Shinjuku Higashi Guchi branch in November of 2013. From the experiment, Taito learned about users’ needs, whether they found the system to be convenient, and how the company can improve the operation of the system and make it more efficient. New policies were gradually adopted, leading to the introduction of an electronic money system.
The merits of the new system?
- Operators quickly adjust prices and handle settlement of the bill.
- It is convenient for customers, allowing them to relax and have fun.
- In terms of management, the burden of money exchange and collection disappears.
- In the future, makers can announce games compatible with this electronic money system. This means customers can enjoy even more types of play.
In terms of concrete plans for adoption, a computer terminal is currently being developed, which will be handling account balances. In order to create terminals that can use different types of money, the industry will form a new initiative.
Introduction of the new system
- It won’t be limited to accepting 100 yen coins. It can make price changes, for example offering 5% off. Special deals, such as 30% off at the end of the season, or cooperating with shopping centers for special promotions will make people excited to use the machines.
- Recovery of coins from the machines, replenishing money-changing machines, etc. will no longer be a problem. Staff currently working on these tasks will be able to provide more help to customers.
- Which customers play what games and for how long can be tracked by the system. Proceeds will be analyzed, popularity can be measured, and measures can be devised.
Other possibilities include that when a game is over but a person wants to play a little more, they can play for some multiples of ten yen, and if beginners want to play with expert friends, they can pay the equivalent of some extra ten yen coins in order to have a powerful weapon equipped.
In any case, to abolish the common sense idea that 1 Play = 100 yen, new machines and new styles of play are being pursued.