25 percent of the US population is expected to have access to legalized iGaming by 2030, according to Flutter’s preliminary 2022 results.
Currently, the following states have legalized online casino gaming:
- Nevada (Poker only)
- New Jersey
- West Virginia
Whereas sports betting legalization has spread like wildfire since the repeal of PASPA, iGaming legalization could be better described as glacial in comparison.
In 2022 not a single state legalized online casino gaming, and excl Nevada, the above states comprise approximately 15 percent of the United States population currently.
Pennsylvania is in the top five, but the big four of California, Texas, Florida and New York are the target areas for all operators. Given fierce tribal opposition in the first three, it would take a brave analyst to predict online gaming in any of the first three.
California had two Propositions make it through the legislature to the ballot last year only to be defeated heavily on public vote. Although the two Propositions did not relate to California online gaming, but rather CA sports betting, as a temperature-check it certainly goes to show there’s going to be a long and arduous path before California mobile casino becomes reality.
CA won’t be able to revisit sports betting until 2024, but what was one of America’s biggest sports betting hopes now is attracting a much more cautious outlook from analysts.
The Lone Star state legalizing TX sports betting is commercial analysts biggest hope for 2023. Currently legislation is sitting in the house and senate, but there will be no constitutional amendment so should it squeeze through it will require a ballot vote later this year.
Florida’s legislative session has recently got underway, so there’ll undoubtedly be activity in coming months around legalization of FL sports betting and Florida online casino. It’ll be unlikely that we see legalization for either in 2023, however.
Where is likely to see iGaming expansion in 2023?
Indiana online casino was touted as one of the favourites but has already seen legislation die in the house. The others suggested are New York, Illinois and Iowa.
Of most interest following the dramatic impact of legalized sports betting in New York is the Big Apple. Rep. Addabbo has put forward the proposition for online gaming, with a lower tax rate in an attempt to appease sports betting operators feeling hard done by the 51 percent tax on sports betting revenue.
Given the size of New York’s online sports betting launch, if NY online gaming does become legal, that will go a long way to propelling the LTM towards the ultimate US TAM.
Why is iGaming so slow in comparison?
iGaming was never going to legalize as quickly as sports betting. Across the United States (in states recorded by the AGA) there are:
- 349 commercial casino properties
- 66 riverboat casino properties
- 51 racinos
- 515 tribal casino properties
- 297 card rooms
All of the above contribute to an extremely pro-retail casino gaming lobby. Whether it’s tribal or normal commercial retail, there is such a huge retail footprint across the country for tourism purposes (hence Nevada only allows poker) that online gaming is seen as far from necessary.
Whether or not this will change remains to be seen. Only time will tell…
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