When many people think of gaming apps, mega-hits like Angry Birds, Candy Crush Saga, and Pokemon Go might come to mind. And of course, matching colored jewels or hunting for adorable little creatures are a huge part of the mobile gaming market and changing the way video games are developed. That being said, there is another industry which is being completely revolutionized by mobile gaming – the gambling and betting industry.
In recent years, it has become obvious that desktop platforms are becoming a thing of the past and more and more is going to be done on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. As of 2015, more people owned mobile devices than desktop computers, more mobile Google searches were made, and the average user spent more time per day on their mobile than on their computer. Many industries are scrambling keep up with this trend and make their services mobile.
The gambling and betting industry is one of the industries having the most success with transitioning to mobile, though it may not be that visible to the average person. One of the main reasons for this is that the Google Play store prohibits listing of apps which offer real-money gambling or wagering, while the Apple App store allows them, but they may be restricted due to local laws.
Despite these restrictions, gambling apps and their usage have exploded in the past few years. All of the major online casinos, poker rooms, bookmakers, even bingo sites, now offer their online product in the form of a mobile app, which can usually be downloaded directly from their mobile website. While user numbers can be hard to pin down, research shows that two out of five mobile users already use their phones to place some sort of bet, with mobile betting predicted to exceed 40% of all online wagering by 2018.
Bookmakers especially are leading the way, with legions of sports bettors making the switch to mobile betting in the past few years. Many of the world’s largest bookmakers, including William Hill, BetVictor, and Paddy Power all offer advanced betting apps which are now almost as sophisticated as their desktop platforms, with the added value of being able to use more “Personalization features” to boost revenues simultaneously (or by slowly replacing) other technics to approach users like Email Marketing.
The convenience of being able to read the news, monitor the odds, and place bets from anywhere is plainly obvious. However, it is the ability to place live bets that is truly spurring the move to mobile betting. People love the ability to be at the pub watching a match with their friends, or even be in the stands watching live, and place bets as the action develops. As mobile devices become more powerful and betting apps can host more features, there will be little reason to be tethered to a desktop bookmaking site when you can do all the same things on your mobile device.
In the United States, where outside of a handful of states, most forms of online gambling remain illegal. The one major exception is betting on horse racing, and this has led horse betting apps like DerbyJackpot and TwinSpires to be among the most popular apps in the country. The future of gambling apps looks good in the US as well, with more and more states considering legalizing online gambling in the next few years.
Apps from online casinos and poker rooms are also proving to be extremely popular. Gambling software developers have spent their time and energy the past few years bringing gambling apps up to date with the current technology. As such, playing video slots on the 32Red mobile casino app, or playing poker on the PokerStars app, is much closer to the experience of doing the same thing on a desktop computer, but with the added bonus of being able to do it from anywhere.
There is a lot of promise in where the mobile gambling industry is headed in the future. Some casinos have already begun offering their live dealer blackjack or roulette games on mobile devices, Swedish software developer NetEnt also just recently released their new product NetEnt Live Mobile. Furthermore, the success of Pokemon GO and its augmented reality interface may be just the beginning of an exciting revolution in augmented reality mobile gambling and betting. Integrating virtual reality with mobile gambling is also an innovation we may see in the not too distant future. But as PC sales continue to fall and more people rely solely on mobile devices, gambling apps are likely to become the primary platform of the betting industry.
About the author:
Julie Anderson is a writer for VegasMaster Magazine. The main focus of her work is on the online gambling industry and the cultural and social implications linked to it.
One of her most recent pieces is THE 10 MOST AMAZING HIGH ROLLER CASINO STORIES.