Online gambling has been growing steadily in popularity over the past decade, but with the onset of COVID, the industry has positively exploded. People who once frequented in-person casinos suddenly had nowhere to go, and they turned to online casinos and discovered a whole world of excitement, promotions, and convenience.
If you’re a fan of online gambling or someone who’s just getting into it, here are some of the trends you can expect to see in 2022.
Improved Visual Quality
Software gaming developers have been ramping up the visual quality of their games over the past year, and that trend is expected to continue in 2022. This includes improving table games so that they resemble a more traditional gambling experience, and ensuring that mobile visuals are at the same level that players see on their desktops.
Virtual and Augmented Reality
As virtual and augmented reality become more available to consumers in the broader market, online casinos are adopting these technologies to create an immersive online gambling experience. VR and AR are a step above simple enhanced visuals—they create a whole new reality for players to inhabit, making the online gambling experience become more alive than ever.
More Countries Legalizing Online Gambling
Online gambling is a touchy subject in some countries. It’s banned in Russia, China, Israel, Thailand, and more. Even in the United States, where states can legalize it on an individual basis, only a handful of states have done so. In 2022, due to the growing popularity and demand for online gambling, we expect to see more countries legalize online gambling or ease up on restrictions.
Cryptocurrency has been taking the world by storm, becoming more mainstream when it used to be confined to a small niche of computer geeks. Both online casinos and gamblers have embraced cryptocurrency as a form of payment, as it offers anonymity, increased security, and fast transactions. Expect to see more strictly crypto casinos pop up in 2022, as well as hybrid casinos that accept both fiat currency and cryptocurrency.
Upgraded Slot Machines
Slots are usually the most popular offering at online casinos, and as such, software developers don’t want to remain complacent but to continue to create attractive, compelling content for players. We expect to see more slot machines developed with a skill component, which may also be more appealing to a younger demographic that’s used to seeing a similar combination of skill and luck in video games.
Increase in Esports Betting
Esports has taken off over the past few years—in 2017, it was even recognized by the Olympic Committee as a sporting activity—but betting on Esports hasn’t taken off as fast as the actual activity itself. Even countries that allow online gambling have been slow to accept betting on Esports—but even this is slowly changing. We expect to see more Esports betting taking place in jurisdictions that allow it, and more countries getting on board as they realize the enormous potential of the market.
Online gambling started off being available on desktops and laptops. As the mobile phone industry exploded, reaching over 6 billion smartphone users worldwide this year, online casino owners quickly adapted to offer optimized mobile sites. Now that wearable devices are becoming more popular, online casino owners are again adapting. We’re looking forward to seeing what new offerings online casinos have in 2022 in terms of wearables.
Online Gambling is Here to Stay
Even when COVID became somewhat under control and land-based casinos re-opened, many people who started playing at online casinos during COVID continued. The ease and convenience of online gambling are hard to match, especially with the new technology that makes it feel so real.
With the upcoming trends of 2022, we expect even more people around the world to discover the fun and excitement of online gambling and jump on board. As always, we recommend playing safely and responsibly at licensed casinos.