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PMC & Southco: Engineering a User-Friendly Gambling Experience

PMC & Southco: Engineering a User-Friendly Gambling Experience


Pari Mutuel Computing (PMC), a technology company which is part of Groupe Carrus, specialises in hardware and software solutions for horse race betting organisations. The company has been driving innovation in its industry for more than 40 years, setting up the first computer system at the Paris-Vincennes racecourse in France in 1964. As a global company, PMC operates 250 racecourses and has delivered 70,000 betting terminals to clients across France, Europe and Africa.

When PMC was designing its third generation Star 2031, the market- leading betting terminal for horse racing, it aimed at making the terminal more innovative by enhancing its ergonomics, ease of use and industrial design.

The Challenge 

PMC was looking to upgrade their Star 2031 terminal as required by their major customer, PMU (Pari Mutuel Urbain), the largest French and European betting operator, which calls for PMC to renew terminals every ten years. As leaders in a highly competitive industry, PMC wanted to make their third generation Star 2031, which is made up of a terminal, monitor and receipt printer more innovative by enhancing its ergonomics, user-friendliness and aesthetic impact.

With the end goal in mind of providing an easy and enjoyable gambling transaction, a major part of their focus was on improving the user experience. The challenge was to avoid any risk of double-touch issue that would result in tapping the screen more often than required.

With many of these terminals located in pubs, another priority was to reduce the required maintenance so that time and money could be saved with less PMC repair staff on the road.

The Solution 

Having worked with Southco on their previous generation of terminals, PMC were confident they could rely on Southco to understand their requirements and deliver a solution.

The Southco team suggested replacing the existing hinge designs with Southco Positioning Technology products to resolve the functional issues of the betting terminal.
For applications that require repositioning and motion control, Positioning Technology offers ease of operation, secure ‘no drift’ positioning and long cycle life through an integrated torque controlled mechanism.

To address the challenges around the movement of the terminal monitor, Southco produced a version of its AV-D25 Display Mount series with integrated constant torque and tilt functionality. This display mount was originally designed to enhance the usability of screen and monitors on medical equipment, where precise positioning is essential to healthcare professionals who use it each day. The embedded torque mechanism ensures that there is no drift in monitor stability, despite variable pressure in use, allowing a successful balance of control and flexibility.

The mount holds securely and provides a consistent repeatable action, removing the risk of the “double touch” when the user is tapping the screen. To add strength to the monitor frame, Southco enlarged the housing of the display mount, thereby making the monitor even more rigid and stable when being tapped.

For the lid on the receipt printer, Southco specified another Positioning Technology product: the E6-600 Constant Torque Positioning Hinge. The E6 holds the lid of the printer in
every position, therefore making it easy for staff to access it for maintenance. As is the case with the display mount, no adjustment is needed and the product has a long cycle life.

The Implementation

PMC plan to roll out 9,000 units of the Star 2031 at the beginning of 2018 into France, Europe and Africa, where they own major contracts with the national betting operators. They forecast a strong increase in deployment from then on, and anticipate that they will benefit significantly from the more precise and user-friendly functionality that the addition of Southco’s Positioning Technology products has brought to their betting terminals.

The Results 

Southco’s experience and engineering capability Positioning Technology hinges and display mounts has helped PMC to reduce the time involved with upgrading their terminal. The product solutions offer an aesthetic benefit as well as a vital functional impact, and are a major contribution to the terminal’s more high-end and contemporary look and feel. In addition to improving the user experience, the objective of less maintenance time has been achieved.

“We knew we could rely on our long-standing relationship with Southco to help make the next generation of our Star 2031 terminal even more user-friendly, secure and visually impactful,” said Thimothée Carrus, Industrial Manager of Groupe Carrus. “Southco takes the time to appreciate what we are doing and to identify products and ideas that will really help us to stay competitive and innovative.”

Southco takes the time to appreciate what we are doing and to identify products and ideas that will really help us to stay competitive and innovative. Thimothée Carrus, Industrial Manager - Groupe Carrus. “Southco takes the time to appreciate what we are doing and to identify products and ideas that will really help us to stay competitive and innovative.”

Also, being able to work with a supplier who brings the combination of a wide product portfolio and engineering excellence to the table has been a huge advantage in reducing the time and complexity of the project.

“The fact that Southco were able to adjust standard products to match our requirements helped to simplify and streamline the entire process. We’re constantly working to innovate in our industry. Southco continues to help us achieve that,” Carrus said.

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