The UK’s online gambling sector generated up to GBP 3.1 billion in 2021, and this number is set to increase by the end of this year. While the industry has not experienced such sharp growth as some other regions, it is on the up and shows promise for the years ahead. But what will drive this growth, and which factors are already a part of its success?
What are the Most Popular Games?
According to data from Statista, the National Lottery is the most popular form of gambling in the UK, preferred by 61% of those surveyed. So popular is the lottery that many who partake do not even consider it in the same league as other types of gambling. In second place is sports betting, likely due to its long British history, stretching back to at least the 1600s. Different kinds of racing, such as dog racing, horse racing, and team sports like football, cricket and rugby, are all popular with British bettors.
But casino-type games are also on the up, with more and more fans of card games and table games betting each day. An example of this would be the fact that many providers have branched into various areas, providing multiple kinds of betting for fans. For instance, Paddy Power online casino gambling provides a great selection of online casino games, but you can also find sports betting and more under the same brand name.
According to the Office for National Statistics, 96% of the UK had access to the internet in 2021, an increase of three percentage points on the year before. Not only are we on track for the whole of the country to have access to the internet, but the quality of connections is increasing as well. Almost all of those with access to the internet also benefit from super-fast broadband, which is defined as a speed of at least 30 Mbps.
This, combined with the imminent and further rollout of 5g, means there will be more accessibility to the online world than ever before. When you combine this with the affordability of smartphones and increases in their quality and speeds, you have a situation where the target demographic is significantly increased.
Demand for On-Demand Entertainment
The way we consume entertainment has also changed significantly in recent years. For example, instead of checking the time to make sure we don’t miss an episode of a specific show, in 2022, most things are on-demand on the like of Netflix. This means we can play, rewind, pause, and replay shows as much as we want. The same applies to music and radio.
These trends have also driven the online gambling sector forward as more Brits want entertainment on their terms. This means having games available on their mobile, laptop, or PC, any time of day or night. For the gambling sector, this has been a massive catalyst. Video gambling games and even live dealer games are available around the clock to players, pushing forth greater interest in the sector.
While the UK gambling sector has slowed down in terms of expansion, it will continue to look positive in the coming years. This will be helped along by more smartphones, faster internet, and a demographic who want gambling, film, and music on their terms, not on someone else’s.