A new wave of statistics has recently shown that the online gambling industry will be on its way to earnings of an estimated $73.45bn in 2024.
This startling figure comes after the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) announced this week that its members handled nearly £1m worth of online payment transactions per day over the course of 2017.
So, what is propelling the industry so quickly?
The rise of technology
Despite the attraction of land-based casinos, the ease of online gaming is by far outstripping them. While famous casinos such as the Bellagio in Las Vegas boast of having more than 2,300 video machines, it’s nothing compared to what is available on online and how quickly you can access it.
But it’s not just video games – slot machines and the vast range of games are becoming almost limitless online. From poker, to baccarat or a flutter on the latest sports game – you can do it all from the comfort of a laptop or even mobile phone these days.
Speaking of the beautiful game, sports betting – whether football, hockey or anything in between – is by far the biggest market for mobile consumers, with the vast majority of adults in the UK having bet on sports at least once in their lives.
According to the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), a whopping 51% of people in 2017 used their mobile phone to place a bet. From the world cup to an accumulator, mobiles make it easy.
Plus, with the number of punters interested in sports, operators are finding that they can often get around strict advertising rules by putting their logo on the backs of the players, as well as grabbing the premium space on offer during ad breaks.
With the introduction of 5G mobile networks expected to make holographic phone/video calls a reality, the technology will soon become enabled in the world of online gambling.
It is believed to far surpass virtual reality, which is already being used by some providers such as “Live Beyond Live” virtual reality casinos. Now even more immersive experiences without ever leaving your sofa are on the cards.
Changes in legislation
One of the biggest reasons for the predicted success is the legislational changes to online gambling, especially in the US where sports betting has recently become legalized.
Four American states have fully legalized online gambling, and more are expected to follow. There are also rumors from countries such as Japan and Africa that they are moving towards legalizing online casinos as a way to further generate revenue, taking profit away from illegal operations, and re-investing it back into the community.
More stringent security measures are certainly finding their way to the top of operator lists – the UKGC is determined to make examples with harsh fines for companies that ignore these checks.
The good news is that these measures already seem to be on their way as the EGBA revealed that companies invested “more than €22.6m” in know-your-customer checks last year to prevent minors from accessing online gambling services.
Trends across the world
While Europe is by far the most valuable region in the world for online gambling, other parts such as Indonesia and South Africa are catching up with a renewed effort by regulators to provide a respectable industry.
At the moment, Europe takes a whopping $16.42bn share of the market (data from 2016) and this is widely due to the legal framework that remains in place. However, with interest from around the globe in gambling only increasing, it won’t be long before the industry is on its way to more than $73bn. Watch this space.