It is no secret that sports gambling has been around since the beginning of competitive sport. In more recent times, the scope of sports gambling has expanded considerably with the advent of the internet and online gambling. Online gambling hosts initially began their virtual trade with online casinos but sports gambling was quick to join the online catalog. But how has the rapid development of technology in the most recent decade made sports gambling globally available?
One of the most eminent factors in making sports gambling widely available is the accessibility of portable technology. As you can see on this graph, in 2018 around 2.9 billion people owned a smartphone, which is predicted to have grown to 3.8 billion by 2021. This steadily increasing availability of smartphones alongside mobile sports gambling apps, which become increasingly optimized each year, high-speed internet connection, and longer battery lives means individuals are no longer reliant on visiting a land-based gambling shop to engage in sports gambling. Therefore, not only does portable online gambling mean that it can be accessed anywhere with an internet connection, it can also be accessed at any time that is convenient to the gambler, making it a 24/7 available service globally.
Another crucial impact technology has had on making sports gambling considerably more globally accessible is the ease of hosting a gambling platform that can be accessed internationally. For example, countries such as Malta are a hub for international online gambling sites, with Malta hosting up to 10% of the world’s online gambling operators due to their industry-leading framework and regulations, more information on which can be found here.
Likewise, online sports gambling has particularly taken off in India in the past year where there are grey areas when it comes to the legality of online betting that have opened the door for international hosting platforms. It is legal in some states and illegal in others to bet online in India, and there are many offshore operators whose online services are available across the country. Sites have sprung up to assist users in understanding in which operators they can place their trust. You can see this page for more information on the growth of online sports betting in India and the role mobile technology is playing.
In a similar vein, online gambling was strictly regulated in the US following the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, introduced in 2006. In more recent years, however, restrictions have begun to be relaxed. The rules on gambling differ across the country, with each state having control over what types of betting it legalizes – for example, the 2019 Lawful Sports Betting Act for Michigan governs what people in that State can and cannot do with regard to betting on sports. The act specifies that a new supervisory board has jurisdiction over betting that takes place online, showing that this is a means of partaking in gambling at the forefront of the sector.
Ultimately, the substantial developments in mobile technology in previous years have made considerable headway in the global availability of online sports gambling due to the combination of access to smartphones which allow anytime, anyplace access to the internet and the availability of offshore platforms in regions with limitations on internal gambling platforms.