Everything You Need to Know about the iGaming Landscape in the United States

Gaming Landscape in the United States image

📖 Published on: February 7th, 2024

✍️ Updated: February 14th, 2024

⏳ 16 mins read


Casinos have long been an integral part of the landscape in the good ol’ United States, but it is only lately that a new form of gambling has emerged: iGambling. IGambling is a broad term referring to all forms of gambling in the digital arena, be it sportsbooks and online casinos, lotteries, and virtual poker. You could say that iGaming encompasses all of that – and more. It has indeed taken the country by storm, and it is now seen as the future of gambling by both enthusiasts and bookies alike. What started as a niche has grown tremendously in recent years, and it is forecast to grow even more – in fact, more and more states are legalizing its use, and there has been a growing number of operators trying their best to ‘cash in,’ to use casin-related lingo.


But before we delve into the impact of iGaming and its future in the industry, it would be best to know what it is, its history, its meteoric rise, and the technological advancements shaping its use and context in the US. Of course, we will also dive into its future prospects and potential challenges – for instance, what are the regulations that would affect its scope, especially in the US? In other words, what is there to know about the iGaming landscape in the United States? Let’s find out.


The definition of iGaming: What it really is


In case you were wondering, what is iGaming, and what is it about? First off, its broadest definition is this: it is referred to as “online gaming,” because that’s what it is! As opposed to land-based casinos, iGaming is done virtually. This means that you no longer have to visit a casino in Atlantic City or Las Vegas – you have access to a wide plethora of activities that you can do online, from the comfort of your home. Imagine the potential, and we’re only just getting started.


Essentially, the iGaming definition includes everything from sports betting to casino games, poker, lottery, and more. But its scope doesn’t end there – it is all gambling in all its forms, albeit digitally. What makes it even more exciting is that the technology surrounding iGaming is set to become even more advanced, and there’s more in store in the coming years for both beginners and aficionados.


iGaming in the US: Where it was and where it’s headed


In the US, the advent of iGaming is inevitable. Casinos have existed in this country since the 17th century, but it was obviously illegal until 1931, when Nevada brought about a brilliant strategy to increase its finances by legalizing all public forms of gambling. Now when it comes to the iGaming industry, can you believe that it didn’t exist two decades ago? But thanks to technology and the sector’s innate ability to adjust to regulations and expectations, it has seen tremendous growth and is now a multibillion dollar industry. In fact, a landmark ruling by the US Supreme Court in 2018 favoring sports betting opened the door for legalization – and paved the way for hundreds of billions of dollars gained. This had a profound impact on the iGaming industry as a whole, because it allowed bettors to do their betting in the open instead of waging their bets with dodgy bookies or offshore operations, and anyone could place their bets from anywhere, even their mobile phones.


iGaming and sports betting started it all – and there’s no turning back, nor would we want to! Since sports has always been huge in the US, placing bets on different games were more widely accepted, and it certainly looks like it’s here to stay.


The myriad forms of iGaming – and the impact of iGaming technology


Many of us have long been fascinated with iGaming, so it’s hardly surprising that the technology surrounding it has greatly evolved, too. After all, it’s all about convenience and engagement with the users. For example, when it comes to sports betting (which is an integral part of iGaming), there are now numerous interfaces such as mobile and web apps, that users can access. This makes betting much easier and faster, transforming the user’s experience in much more exciting ways. Bettors can choose from various odds types, and they can even get information in real-time.


The technology in sports betting has given users a better-designed UX/UI that has resulted in more user-friendly navigation and enabled users to customize their experience. What’s more, security has also improved tremendously, especially regarding transactions done in real-time! There are more payment methods, too, which has made sports betting more attractive.

The improved graphics of the games have also had a huge impact on iGaming’s popularity. In the past, games were very limited in their technology and even players’ patience were tested because it took ages to load a game. But now, games have amplified and advanced, and the graphics alone is worthy of attention.


As for online casinos, users are more engaged nowadays because of intuitive design, and white-label casinos have entered the market and facilitated compliance because of their recognized licenses. Of course, these online casinos also prioritize the security and data protection of users.


The myriad forms of iGaming image


There are also other forms of iGaming, such as instant win apps and bingo apps, which offer quick and easy games and prizes. Aside from this, lots of players of different skill levels play poker games online, and all this needs a specially-designed platform, security measures that are on-point, and different payment methods as well.


The technological innovations shaping iGaming


As mentioned, without advanced software, iGaming probably wouldn’t be where it is now. The beauty of the technology used for iGaming is that it is constantly evolving – it seems that the technology comes up with new and better innovations as the months go on.


For example, software specialists can provide an upgrade to the tech stacks of platforms so they can optimize their performance and user experience. In addition, software agencies can also easily add a new game or sports league to a platform’s lineup, which allows platforms to engage more users and expand their offerings. More games are now loaded with interactive features as well, which adds to the user’s overall gaming experience. All of this leads to better user satisfaction and engagement - and results in user loyalty, which is the ultimate aim.


What awaits us? How iGaming can affect the economy and future prospects


The better and more advanced software used by various iGaming platforms has had a snowball effect – in essence, because they can offer more advanced software, these iGaming platforms are able to offer tailored solutions. These tailored solutions can now also be in compliance with each jurisdiction’s regulations. Because the software is more advanced than ever, it can integrate geolocation, responsible gaming, and other protocols – and make sure that iGaming marketing products follow rules and regulations per state.


iGaming has become more well-known in many US states in a relatively short span of time. Take sports betting, for instance. It is now live in almost half of the states, and while Rhode Island is known for being the lone state that legalized iGaming last year, the number of states that have legalized it are still growing. There are now seven states where iGaming is legal, namely Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Connecticut, and Michigan.


iGaming can affect the economy and future prospects image


But despite the slow legal expansion, experts are optimistic. The reason for this outlook is simple: the iGaming sector is still bringing in significant revenue, and states are soon predicted to sit up and take notice. Let us give you an astonishing example: even with only a few states joining the iGaming bandwagon, it still grossed a whopping total of $16.17 billion in the United States by the end of 2023. The states that had the most earnings were Maryland followed by Ohio, Nebraska, and Massachusetts – states that were barely operational a year before.


When it comes to the creation of jobs, the future of iGaming looks bright as well. There are a lot of Americans who continue to benefit from having jobs in iGaming, and the states themselves are getting plenty of tax revenue. One great example is New Jersey, which earned a tax revenue of as much as $20 million in 2022 due to iGaming services alone.


The number of Americans opting for legal, local sportsbooks rather than offshore, illegal operators continues to grow, and numerous platforms are taking advantage and delivering even better services than before. This, combined with the need to generate more tax revenue and an impending recession in the making, iGaming may well become a priority for many states in the coming years – at least, it will certainly be discussed.


The challenges of faced by iGaming


But despite the good news, there are still some hurdles faced by the sector. For one, a big concern is the lack of regulations. Many lawmakers are worried that iGaming will eat land-based casino revenue, and there are those who are also concerned about addiction to gambling, especially now that virtually anyone can access it.


Aside from this, there are numerous tribal issues to consider, and many land-based casinos are opposed to the rise of online gaming and see it as a threat to their livelihood. In the states of New York and Illinois, however, lawmakers are actively lobbying for the iGaming arena, but we have yet to find out how the wind blows. New York is especially vying for iGaming tax revenue, and this is hardly surprising because it has a lot of debt (greater than any other state) and puts the greatest strain on its residents when it comes to taxes. In New York, the state is expanding its land-based gaming as we speak – but it is also seriously considering iGaming in New York as a means of income.


This 2024, the iGaming sector is expected to expound on the benefits it can bring to the states, and it is up to the sector to reason with the lawmakers of each state and let them see for themselves the overall benefit of incorporating iGaming in their respective states. It can indeed rake in even more tax revenue than sports betting alone, and this is a great draw for lawmakers. This was the iGaming case in Rhode Island, which became the first state where iGaming was legalized after the pandemic, while Connecticut launched an online casino and Michigan legislators approved iGaming even before the pandemic started.


Blockchain and cryptocurrency: how it could potentially transform the iGaming landscape


Meanwhile, there’s no denying that blockchain technology has also greatly impacted the iGaming sector. There are now a good number of crypto-gambling websites as well as sports bet platforms that offer a wide array of crypto niche games and plenty of advantages. The first advantage is security. Since blockchains are basically tamper-proof and have a timestamp, this makes each transaction using blockchains trustworthy, and, more importantly, transparent. With the technology, players can feel more secure in their transactions, and that is why bitcoin sites accepting cryptocurrencies became more popular as soon as the benefits became apparent.


Today, there are more gambling websites that adopt a significant number of cryptocurrencies, and this has resulted in fairer procedures for playing and of course, it has attracted more players. Blockchain technology is fascinating in itself because it has a huge impact in iGaming. First of all, unlike traditional online gaming sites that rely on international regulators or auditors, online casino sites that have adopted cryptocurrencies can assure clients that all that occurs on their platform is fair and abides by the laws in international gambling. Random number generators are a lot more efficient when using blockchain technology, and the results can never be tampered with. On the other hand, in live casino gambling, the random number generator is basically useless since there are live dealers, who, in turn, have to be verified as fair by a third-party auditor.


Furthermore, blockchain technology has made sure that all the transactions are decentralized – which means that all players can rest assured that they have maximum security. In addition, with the technology, players can take advantage of lower fees whenever they withdraw their funds or deposit. Other features of online casino cryptocurrency websites is that they offer better privacy and anonymity and they even offer more attractive promotion and bonuses! This means that with iGaming technology like this, you can deposit as little as .001 BTC and get a hundred percent welcome bonus, which may even come with free spins.


As you can see, blockchain technology and the use of cryptocurrencies can result in an expanded customer base – after all, since everything is decentralized, anyone can do what they want with their financial transactions without worrying about interference from institutions and the like.


The future of iGaming is here


The future of iGaming, despite setbacks and challenges, looks promising indeed. Even though there are still some bumps on the road ahead, it’s meteoric rise only means that it has a lot of potential. Many states have already realized this, hence the continued debate over the legalization of iGaming. No one can deny that iGaming is here to stay – and whether or not its effects are good is beside the point. In the US, as in other countries worldwide, the sooner it is adopted and legalized, the better, because it can bring much gain to everyone involved. In a sense, it is much like King Midas – the golden touch will turn everything into gold, but one has to exhibit great care. But if done properly, it can very well be a turning point – and it will change the gambling landscape as we know it.


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