Despite the economic havoc wrought by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic across the world in 2020, certain industries were able to not only keep their head above water, but to flourish. One of these sectors was the online casino and gambling sector, which experienced record-breaking growth figures, despite a global economic slowdown.
With millions across the world required to stay at home to reduce the possibility of spreading the COVID-19 virus, an increasing number of us were spending our free time online. And based on the performance of some of the best online casinos in the UK, which can be viewed here at ukbestonlinecasinos.com, it appears that online gambling was a particularly popular option.
As evidence of this, although the global stock markets were thrown into utter chaos as the pandemic raged on, the share price of a number of online casino companies experienced significant performance boosts. Companies such as DraftKings, Penn National Gaming, Everi and GAN all displayed some of the best performances they have experienced since they were first floated.
But what does this signal about the future of the online casino industry, as we move forward into 2021?
The online casino market: what does the future hold?
Although much of why online casino stocks performed so well related to the COVID-19 pandemic and the stay-at-home orders it brought with it, there are other reasons why investors are betting big on gambling companies. One reason relates to the slow but steady liberalization of online gambling and online casinos in America. After many decades of restrictions on online casinos and sports betting, numerous states across the United States are introducing comprehensive legal regimes for the regulation of online betting and gambling. For investors, this presents an opportunity to see potentially significant gains on any early investments made now, particularly as more entrants enter into the market and drive share prices up.
This will no doubt have a much broader impact on the online gambling sector globally, as more and more new players enter into the space. It also looks like this will be followed by a considerable amount of market consolidation as larger gambling companies potentially begin acquiring smaller outfits. And as land based casinos continue facing hardships, the future really does look digital.
But beyond the state of the online casino market itself, what does 2021 have in store for individual players?
2021: more mobile adoption
Although you might have assumed that we are at a saturation point in terms of the adoption of mobile technology and devices, there is a surprising amount of room for growth left in the market. This is particularly true of how we use mobile devices.
With the likes of 5G ready to be rolled out within the next year, this represents the next step in the advancement of mobile technology. For the online casino world, this will most definitely be a positive development. Quicker Internet speeds allow a much richer gaming experience to be offered by online casinos. For fans of live casino gaming, this opens up new mobile possibilities that were previously not possible. For this reason, 5G holds a lot of potential for casino games developers eying up new technologies.
Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies: boom or bust?
Despite the fact that online casinos have been one of the earliest adopters of cryptocurrencies, individual users have been relatively slow to switch to this payment method. With Bitcoin reaching new all-time highs in recent weeks, however, public attention is once again switching to cryptocurrencies.
What will be interesting to keep an eye on will be whether the frenzy that seems to be accompanying the performance of Bitcoin will translate into increased use of cryptocurrencies by individuals on a daily basis. In the last cryptocurrency gold rush, while increased interest in Bitcoin and other cryptos sent the price surging, this did not necessarily translate into an increase in the usage of Bitcoin as a payment method. This was largely because for those individuals who did hold an amount of Bitcoin, for example, price volatility made them reluctant to part ways with it in case it either fell in value, leaving them out of pocket, or rose in value, which would see them miss out on an investment opportunity.
Whether we begin to see the widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin as a popular payment method for online casinos will hinge on how much the price stabilizes. If it continues to rise or experience significant price fluctuations, common usage in the online casino world might be a way off.
Looking ahead: what do we want to see from online casinos in 2021? was first seen on Casino Life Magazine