The United States has enjoyed a tumultuous relationship with gambling over the years. After skepticism dominated his attitude towards online casinos throughout the 1990s and 2000s, acceptance of the hobby has gradually become widespread over the past 10 years. Today, all but two states allow residents to legally gamble online.
That said, there are only four states where the industry is fully regulated, meaning all online casino operators must be based in Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania. But which of these tops the list when it comes to the market share of the online gaming industry in the United States?
New Jersey leads the way
While Nevada could be the epicenter of physical casinos across Las Vegas and Reno, Atlantic City, New Jersey is not far behind – and the state has a head start when it comes to online gambling. Internet betting has been fully legal in New Jersey since 2013 and dozens of competing sites have sprung up in the meantime, with HowToBet.com provide interested punters with more information on the relative merits of individual casinos.
This competition has served the state well, with online casinos pulling $ 970.3 million in revenue in 2020. December saw its biggest month yet, registering $ 99.5 million in revenue for the month, an increase of 101.6% from the same month a year earlier. This made up for a year of fallow for land-based casinos, which saw a catastrophic $ 1.2 billion drop in revenue.
Meanwhile, sports betting has also taken off in the Garden State, with more than $ 6 billion in bets placed in 2020 and nearly $ 400 million in revenue recorded. December was also the industry’s most lucrative month and marked the fifth consecutive month that New Jersey broke national betting records.
Pennsylvania on the rise
The growing popularity of online gambling in the United States is expected to continue in the years to come, with analysts predicting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.41% through 2025. Pennsylvania appears to be the biggest winner in the near future, given that it is currently the fastest growing online gaming market in the country.
It’s hardly surprising that PA’s online gambling industry is expected to grow. For starters, it has the largest population of any of the four states where online betting is regulated, with nearly 13 million people calling it home. Meanwhile, it recorded the second-highest gross gaming income in 2017 behind Nevada, signaling the hobby’s popularity in Pennsylvania.
This, coupled with the fact that Pennsylvania was the most recent state to approve online casino operators in its vicinity, means the sky is the limit. With only two years of legalized activity under its belt, Pennsylvania has plenty of room to develop and the recent signing of some historic agreements with major industry players should see it grow stronger in the coming years.
New Jersey is unquestionably the king of online casinos today – but the rapid pace of growth in neighboring Pennsylvania means it might not be the top dog for too long.