The Impact of Covid-19 on Sports Betting

The gambling industry has seen a surge in popularity over the last few years. This popularity is demonstrated by sports betting which has witnessed significant growth, especially at the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

The authorities had to restrict the movement of people and impose lengthy lockdown periods to curb the spread of the deadly virus. Also, social distancing obligations meant that people could not visit a traditional land-based sports betting establishments to enjoy their favorite games.

Therefore, most people were forced to seek alternative ways to continue playing, including online sports betting.

The following are some effects of Covid-19 on sports betting:

1.     Rise in Mobile Gaming and Wearable Tech

Smartphones allow you to perform almost all online operations. During the pandemic, mobile betting became a convenient way for players to bet on their favorite sports regardless of their location.

Mobile gaming applications are now a basic for online betting companies. They are convenient, especially for sports betting enthusiasts with limited gaming time. The proliferation of affordable smartphones and stable internet connections has made mobile gaming more popular.

These devices have also made it easy to research betting tips and find the best sports to play. Let’s say you love to bet on basketball after checking free picks.

 You can take a look of NBA picks today through your iPhone and place your bets on the same device. It’s that simple.

Online sports betting platforms are continuously improving and updating their mobile applications. Some of the upgrades simplify the registration and gaming processes and include module stacks allowing users to disable or enable features.

Apart from mobile devices, smartwatch betting is gaining prominence. But the different shapes or sizes and numerous proprietary software in the market pose a challenge when creating ideal gaming experiences for these smartwatches. However, most companies are heavily investing in it.

2.     Improved Bonuses

During the pandemic, most sports betting service providers realized the benefits of rewarding new players for registering for accounts on their platforms. These enhanced bonuses and other incentives significantly contributed to the increase in the number of people betting on sports. Although the pandemic has abated, these offers are expected to improve.

One such bonus is the welcome bonus. You will receive this bonus for signing up to most online sports betting site. The welcome bonus is meant to build a friendship between the platform and the player. However, you need to check the terms and conditions attached to these bonuses.

The deposit bonus is one of the most prevalent bonuses in the sports betting sector. Several top sports betting sites offer deposit bonuses ranging between 100% and 200%. The deposit bonuses present a great chance to improve your betting budget and increase the length of your playing session.

Another common incentive is the no deposit bonus. In most cases, this bonus is a component of a loyalty bonus scheme or features in the VIP program. However, most platforms allow you to wager this bonus on a single or a handful of pre-determined games. Also, their restrictions are stricter than those requiring a deposit.

3.     Incorporation of Blockchain Technology

Blockchain is one of this century’s most impressive innovations. Today, most industries, including betting, utilize its immense advantages in everyday operations.

During the pandemic, it became more prevalent in the sports betting sector as most online gaming establishments sought to improve their services. This trend is projected to grow since new possibilities in blockchain are continuously emerging.

Blockchain technology can benefit the sports betting industry in several ways. They include:

Enhancing Security

Enhanced security and transparency are among the most significant advantage of blockchain technology to the sports betting industry. Due to its end-to-end encryption, databases can read and store transaction data safely. This makes it impossible to alter or manipulate the transactions.

Also, users need not give up any personal information when carrying out crypto transactions. Therefore, the risk of hacking is minimal.

Improving Anonymity and Privacy

The privacy of sensitive data such as personal and financial details is a big worry for online gamers globally. This is because most players prefer keeping this kind of information private.

Blockchain technology can contribute to hiding and safeguarding this data from outside sources. You will be guaranteed a private and anonymous betting experience when you make transactions through cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum.

Enhanced Convenience

When playing in traditional sports betting establishments, you may have to wait for several days or weeks for your winnings to reflect in your account. However, crypto transactions are much faster and can be completed within minutes.

Blockchain makes transactions faster and more convenient by bypassing third-party institutions such as banks. Deposits and withdrawal transactions are verified within seconds.

Improved Transparency

Some people think that sports betting is an untrustworthy industry. Distrust levels can be high, especially when playing with cash. Also, many people don’t trust traditional gambling services as they think the system might be rigged to eliminate a winning possibility.

But blockchain technology maintains a record of each gaming and payout transaction. Therefore, it alleviates doubts by providing legitimacy. It also prevents fraud and prevents trade in illegal assets.

4.     Growth of Hybrid Gaming Experiences

Although the concept of virtual reality (VR) has been around for a while, it is not common in the gaming industry. It was initially meant for a small niche market, even in the gaming industry. However, it expanded rapidly during the coronavirus pandemic to become one of the critical components of the sector.

Virtual reality incorporates real-life surroundings into your gaming environment. It also promotes social gaming by allowing more people in various locations to bet on their favorite sports with greater immersion.

Today, you can easily find VR-oriented online sports betting sites offering great gaming experiences. Thanks to the rapid evolution of the Metaverse, immersive gaming experiences are becoming more attractive and mainstream. Apart from virtual reality, the demand for mixed reality (MR) and augmented reality (AR) has also grown significantly.

You will find advanced technology like live interactions, gesture imitations, and 3D avatars in the current hybrid online gaming experiences. Besides improving the gaming experience, online sports betting platform can integrate virtual reality with AI (artificial intelligence) to detect fraudulent activities quickly, thus, enhancing security.

More players, especially the younger generation, are beginning to invest in ideal gear, like high-resolution screens and VR headsets, to enhance their gaming experiences. Although the cost of the gear is high, it is expected to drop significantly soon.

Huynh Nguyen

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