“FEC of the Future”
Embed’s Tech of Transformation
“Fueling fun since 2001,” Embed says its more than 20 years in the industry has brought a number of breakthrough innovations that shaped family entertainment centers globally. Before cashless systems were the norm, Embed boasts that it was trailblazing by designing industry firsts like their award-winning Mobile Wallet and smartTOUCH card readers.
Today, they say they’re on a mission to revolutionize operations, the consumer journey, and revenue landscape through technology innovation – ultimately “future-proofing” businesses. This vision of the “FEC of the Future” is what the Embed team says drives them forward to deliver the tech of transformation.
Legacy of Innovation
With deep roots in the family entertainment, arcade, attractions and amusement space dating back to 1956, Embed grew to become one of the leading players in tech innovation. “We started as innovators and pioneers – and we want to keep it that way,” said CEO Renee Welsh. “This rich legacy in innovation inspires us to continuously look at how we can improve our technology and services in the industry. Because we were into cashless software and tech before it was the norm, we have witnessed the critical transition over the last few years when FECs were going from manual processes of coins and tickets to cashless solutions and the transformative power thereof.”
Businesses are cyclical and at a time when the “golden age” of the arcade started its decline, the company said they saw how the family entertainment industry was slow to go digital by embracing technology to run its businesses. FECs were still bound by semi-manual processes, usually centered on POS systems, which they said are inflexible and impact the consumer experience.
Into an Era of Cashless and Digitalization
As digitalization eliminates overlaps, gaps and errors in processes and operations, cashless solutions also prove to be maximizers of operational efficiency when it comes to costs, maintenance, manpower and eliminates hurdles to growing revenue. This is exactly what Embed promises to deliver through its integrated hardware and software solutions.
In their pursuit to develop technology that not only keeps up with the times but stays ahead of it, Andy Welsh, CTO at Embed, said, “We are now in a heavily tech-driven society. For tech providers like us, it is always a must to know what the next best thing is for our customers – and make them realize why their business needs it now.”
A great example of this is when Embed partnered with Dave & Buster’s to develop the Mobile Wallet. D&B’s Pete Stearns, senior director of midway operations, said, “We want to be on the cutting-edge for our guests, so we approached Embed and told them that we want Apple and Android phones to be able to have a digital game card that can process game transactions using that phone. At the time, nobody in the industry had that. Embed took on the challenge. Two different companies came together and produced something that the industry has not seen.”
Today, Embed says its Mobile Wallet is still the only Apple and Google-certified system in the industry since its launch in 2019. This virtual game card sits in guests’ mobile wallet, enabling them to top-up or reload without leaving the game. “When guests can pay with their phone, the longer they’ll stay in the zone” – which means non-stop revenue for the operator.
“Think of it as fueling businesses with the technology of today so they can skyrocket to tomorrow,” Renee Welsh said. “This is the reason why we partner with the likes of Amazon Web Services, Apple and Google. These industry titans give us access to their pilot technology, allowing us to experiment and test how such transformational tech can be applicable for FECs.
“There is much that can be done with today’s technology so businesses can cut back on operational costs, lessen their manpower and increase profitability,” she said. “We can only make our customers experience those possibilities when we break barriers for them.”
Aside from the Mobile Wallet, Embed also develops a range of cashless solutions such as kiosks, card readers and RFID wearable media.
“Keeping our ear to the ground when it comes to our customers’ needs has greatly helped us engage them better and understand how these needs should translate to solutions we can provide for them,” explained CMO Sara Paz. “To do this, we have our 24/7 service, care and support that are easily accessible and available for customers everywhere. We also have local offices in key regions to stay close to our customers. All of these efforts are to partner with our customers in providing a superior guest experience at their venues.”
Becoming an FEC of the Future
While going cashless is the first order of business to stay relevant and competitive, says Embed, there is more that can be done to achieve greater efficiency and sustainability. This is why those at the company can be found always hard at work deep in research and development to enable FECs to achieve a future where their venue becomes a multi-sensory evolving destination.
“When we say ‘FEC of the Future,’ we mean a next-gen FEC,” Renee Welsh said. “A number of today’s FECs have adopted tech that eases their operations, an ‘FEC of the Future’ demands more than just that – consumers will expect businesses to have tech that transforms operations, redefines the customer journey, and expands the revenue landscape. The tech of transformation will drive all these factors and elevate the guest experience so high that guests will demand nothing short of it.”
The company further said, “The ‘FEC of the Future” is in tune with consumers’ ever-changing tastes and preferences. Upon entering a venue, an AI or virtual assistant can help guide guests’ decision-making by ordering and receiving products, prizes or food orders anytime and anywhere in the FEC. The guest experience can also start before guests step into the FEC through their mobile devices.
“Technologies like augmented and virtual reality can produce flexible and heightened experiences such as projections on screens, floors, walls and ceilings, creating an ever-changing ambient experience,” Embed said.
Tech talk can be intimidating, so it eases its implementation and usage, they noted, paving the way for the ultimate guest experience to be possible in the family entertainment industry. What thrills Embed? Seeing businesses adapt to today’s technology to embrace the beauty of complexity that the future holds. After all, they say, transformation is only possible through evolution and growth.
Top Benefits of Embed’s Mobile Wallet
Ever bullish on the power of their award-winning mobile tech, Embed provided their “Top 3 Reasons Why You Need Embed’s Mobile Wallet In Your FEC”:
1. Tap. Reload. Profit.
– Contactless transactions on mobile phones
– Quick game card top-up or reload for guests anytime, anywhere without leaving the game
– APIs available to link to any FEC’s mobile app
2. Capacity Management
– No more long kiosk lines
– Cuts down crowding at the entrance
– Seamless in-venue guest experience
3. Covid-19 Contact Tracing
– Receive alerts for every registered patron who tests positive for Covid-19 including games played and time/date of visit
– Trace guests who were in close contact
– Ensure guest & employee safety