And it is all about the future, especially considering that it has been estimated that by 2024 revenues from the gambling market could surpass the $525 billion mark. Before diving into the tech aspects of this impressive development, other aspects need to be highlighted. These include the growing per capita income that had been observed until the beginning of 2020 as well as the growing interest in gambling.
However, the increased adoption of online gambling is undoubtedly one of the most important drivers to consider. Before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, online gambling was growing steadily, with people discovering how easy it is to access every type of game, from online slots to poker. This growth in offer has also made online gambling more appealing as there is something for everyone.
Countries in which online gambling has shown larger growth include the United States, China, Italy, and the United Kingdom, with North America and Europe being the leading continents. Putting it in numbers, while online casinos only had a growth of 6.6% in 2008, they grew by 14% in 2019. Overall, casinos â€“ both online and offline – comprise around 25% of the total market share in the gambling sector, which is led by the lottery sector and sports gambling. Unsurprisingly, American companies are leading the pack in this area, with 4 out of the 5 largest players in the industry being American. At the very top is Las Vegas Sands, which reported revenue of $13.8 billion in 2018.
However, during 2020, casinos have been closed for the larger part of the year. While activities have resumed in countries such as the United States, the global impact is undeniable. That said, the online gambling segment has hugely benefited. In this segment, the amount of playing online slots has grown, which has been influenced by the fact that other types of gambling such as sports betting could not take place. Plus, people being in their homes and adjusting to a more online-oriented lifestyle has also had an important role. This has led numerous companies to diversify their offers and invest in the technology that makes online gambling possible and appealing. Early adopters reaped the initial benefits but more gambling companies and platforms are widening their offers to reach a larger public.
Taking a closer look at the casino market, its segmentation has changed over the years. Where before there were only online and offline casinos, a new segment that has emerged is the virtual reality (VR) segment. While offline gambling was the largest segment by 2019, the virtual reality one is growing very quickly, something that is expected to accelerate further during and after 2020. In addition, the launch of newer and better VR headsets, as well as more affordable ones, could also have an impact on the future of VR gambling.
And VR is not the only innovative technology driving the growth of the market. Hybrid games and augmented reality (AR) are also a big part of what is making online casinos skyrocket. Users can feel almost as if they are entering an offline casino without having to even set one foot out of their house. The most cutting-edge online casinos are quickly adopting these technologies to stand out from the rest and gain a competitive edge.
While VR is a much more immersive experience in which images and sounds are replicated through the use of a wearable device, augmented reality projects an overlay in the physical world of the user. Overall, both technologies can be used for a much more realistic experience, which can be adapted to the tastes and needs of the player.
Whether itâ€™s a regular online gambling session or a much more modern VR experience, it looks like the casino market will continue to grow, with online and tech playing an instrumental role.