Online sports has indeed come a long way since its introduction during the mid-90s. From the early times when basic sports bets used to be placed through dial-up connections, using the most simplistic forms, to the present era are of live in-play betting, as the action unfolds, technology has played a key role in bringing the sports betting industry where it stands today.
If we look at online sports betting as it happens today, both through desktop as well as mobile mediums, the extent of innovation that has made it possible today is nothing short of phenomenal. And anyone who hadn’t been paying attention to it wouldn’t have even felt that it actually happened!
The early days of Internet-based sports betting are about the times when computers started being accepted as an integral part of modern day society, but were not so commonplace that every household had one or more of them.
In the pre-online era, sports bets used to be taken through phone calls and were paper-recorded by the local bookies. It was a fairly simple system, with no sure shot way of knowing what you had gotten yourself into. For people staying in regulated areas, things were slightly better as there were established retail joints, however there wasn’t 100% transparency still.
Once the first online casinos started popping up in the year 1994, sports betting portals followed suit. The first sports betting sites were crude and had limited functionality owing to slow processing power and connection speeds. Regardless, the framework had already been laid for the future growth and innovation in this space.
With computers finding their place in every household of the world, and Internet speeds getting better with each passing year, online sports betting also caught on very well with the masses. The betting sites started accepting all kinds of payment mediums, and the betting lines were also updated quicker than before.
These advancements served as a good incentive for players, who were simultaneously lured by attractive deposit and signup bonuses, to switch online. By the year 2005, online sports betting became a huge worldwide industry, with over $ 100 billion exchanging hands in terms of wagers per year. Although many consider this era to be the boom time, there was still a lot of room for growth, and hence revenues.
Mobile sports betting
Late 2000s saw iPhones giving people the ability to use specific applications and easily browse Internet on their phones, providing them with multiple ways of consuming content. Sports betting industry quickly lapped up this opportunity and launched mobile sports betting portals. This proved to be a game changer as punters could now place their wagers from anywhere they wanted, at any time, as long as they had active Internet connection on their phones.
The revenues increased accordingly and mobile betting market gained dominance. Today, android phones have surpassed iPhones in terms of betting activity, a reflection of the shift of powers.
Then there came a time when fuelled by mobile betting, live betting was introduced to the masses, enabling them to place bets as they saw action unfolding before their eyes, either in the stadiums or in their living rooms.
With technology continuing to disrupt every possible industries, including sports betting, it’d exciting to see where this domain will head in the future!