Industry Places ‘Bets’ on Social Gambling

High hopes linger for the growth of social gambling.

While controversial and taboo in some circles, a new report from Juniper Research indicates a “surge in social gambling activity,” along with the introduction of intrastate casino and lottery services in the US, will help push global annual wager via mobile handsets and tablets to $100 billion by 2017.

That’s up from just under $20 billion last year.

“Mobile Gambling: Casinos, Lotteries & Betting 2012-2017” highlights the dramatic increase in wager that had occurred in UK-facing sportsbooks over the past year, with several already seeing around 20% of online wager occurring via mobile devices.

However, the report noted that while sports betting currently accounted for the largest share of mobile gambling, it would be overhauled by casino gaming within five years.

“Social gaming companies such as Zynga are seeking to move from play-for-fun casino games into real money gambling, while pureplay mobile casinos including Probability have begun to integrate with the Facebook mobile platform,” writes report author Dr Windsor Holden. “In this way, consumers will be able to use their social networks to register for casino games, substantially increasing both the reach and engagement of such services.”

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