How Covid-19 Changed Sports Betting
Most of the sports have resumed even though health guidelines are to be followed to contain the Covid-19 virus’s spread. For instance, the UK allows competitive sports such as football to occur, but no fans attend such matches. The government also demands that the teams develop a written COVID-19 plan and risk assessment before any game occurs.
The rules may differ from one country to another, but they aim to contain the spread. The pandemic has affected almost every industry in different ways. Will the experience be the same when you visit an online casino
When Physical Sports Were Paused Indefinitely
The period between February and June 2020 was somehow tough in most countries. The Covid-19 scare disoriented many countries, which made it hard to make some crucial decisions. Most of the major leagues as well the domestic ones, were suspended indefinitely to help curb the spread of the deadly virus. Some gambling houses were also closed during this season. Online casinos saw an increase in activity levels and traffic on their sites as people started looking for alternatives to make an extra coin or even get occupied during the lockdown season.
It is an umbrella name for the growing professional video game industry. It is a broad industry where professionals compete, fans watch the game online, individuals bet/wager, and various brands advertise. Esports started as a small niche, and it was a hobby for most people. However, it has now grown into a billion-dollar industry that attracts endorsements and partnerships from major leagues such as NBA and superstars such as Michael Jordan. In 2019, the total eSports viewership hit 454 million and is expected to hit 646 million in 2023, with an annual growth rate of 9%.
The major players such as Twitch, Microsoft, Activision, and Nintendo reports that the conditions created by the pandemic have allowed them to thrive. Microsoft disclosed that the number of subscribers to the Game Pass service crossed the 10 million mark
. The same company reported that multiplayer engagement increased by 130% between April and May. Nintendo released a new game; “Animal Crossing: New Horizons,” in late March and sold over 13.5 million copies so far. Twitch recorded 1.4 billion gaming hours in April, which was a 50% increase from March.
Fantasy Video Sports on the Rise
The fantasy sports market is expected to grow by USD 9.34 billion during 2020-2024. There are different segments of fantasy video sports with soccer taking the biggest share. Fantasy leagues follow the real sporting action. There are big chances that most fantasy leagues did not launch at their typical time. 2020, being a year of distractions, saw many sports organizations such as the MLB and NBA come with creative measures to keep revenues streaming in and their fans entertained.
Fantasy sports has been one of the biggest solutions to achieve these two goals. Betting fans were forced to turn to fantasy sports as the number of available games on betting platforms reduced. Sportsbook operators that own casinos and retail outlets that are yet to fully resume their operations. Such providers have been offering virtual and daily fantasy games to weather the prevailing economic conditions. NASCAR is a good example of a sports league that turned to video gaming streaming which opens up new betting opportunities for the gambling community.
Lockdown Prompted Gamblers to Try New Products
’s report in the UK indicates that existing gamblers started to explore new opportunities during the lockdown period. An analysis conducted in May 2020 shows that 31% of gamblers tried one or more gambling products for the first time during the lockdown. On the other hand, 48% of engaged gamblers tried a new gambling product during the same period. The same research indicates that 12% of these gamblers try virtual races or sports, 13% tried online bingo, 11% National Lottery Online, while even 11% tried their luck in online slots.
Live Dealer Has Become a Trend
There are thousands of bookmakers that offer casino games. We are now seeing a trend where gamblers are playing against a live dealer in a world that is trying to enforce social-distancing regulations. The ‘live dealer’ has been very vital in recreating the traditional casino experience.
A ‘live dealer’ is a real human that will appear on your screen and you can communicate with him or her in real-time. The camera will beam all the moves to you so that you can make informed decisions. All the cards on the deck will contain microchips that are usually connected to a sophisticated computer program. The microchips will interface with the software as the dealer continues to deal the cards. The dealer will wait for you to place the virtual bet similarly to what happens in a typical casino like you can see in energywin.com
. The dealer will then begin dealing after the player has placed the bets. The cards will be scanned by the live dealer and will follow the events on your screen. The players can tip the live dealer in real-time just as it happens in a regular casino.
Contingency Plans and Alternatives
The disruption brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic forced various players in the sports scene to come up with contingency plans. Underdogs are now shaking up the sports space in ways that we may never have imagined. For instance, some sport organizers have made it clear that some sports will be held in the fans’ absence. We all know that fans can either motivate or demotivate the players in sports such as football. These plans have changed how people place their bets and the general outlook of the gambling industry.
The Covid-19 has brought some changes that will be felt for many years in the sports betting industry as well as others. For instance, the growth of esports and fantasy leagues might be permanent as they showed an upward trend even before the Covid-19 hit the global space.
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