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Mobile Gambling: A Good Bet

Hot hands, anytime, anywhere

June 5, 2006

The "Gambling on Mobile III" report, from Juniper Research, predicts that the worldwide mobile gambling market, in terms of the total value of bets placed, will rise from slightly under $2 billion in 2006 to over $23 billion in 2011.

Mobile Gambling Revenues Worldwide, 2006 & 2011 (billions)

That is a Vegas-like 1000% jump in just five years.

Juniper attributes the rise primarily to an increase in mobile lotteries, which are set to account for 41% of total mobile gambling expenditures in the next five years.

Benefiting from the roll out of 3G services and sophisticated handsets, Juniper forecasts that mobile casino gambling expenditure will trail lotteries and sports betting slightly with the low-stake, mass-market end likely to show the most growth through to 2011.

Of course, there is a caveat.

"Like all sectors of gambling, mobile gambling remains a legislation constrained industry with higher potential where restrictions on mobile gambling are lifted in key markets such as the USA," said Bruce Gibson, author of the report.

The mobile channel has many advantages when it comes to providing gambling services, as well as some disadvantages. Juniper refers to them as "Drivers" and "Constraints." Nevertheless, people around the world like to gamble and increasingly they have a mobile device in their hand.

According to recent data from Pyramid Research, there are currently 2.6 billion mobile phone subscribers alone, and by 2010 there will be 3.5 billion. Probably more than a few like to make the occasional wager.

Mobile Phone Subscribers Worldwide, 2005, 2006 & 2010 (billions)

Juniper foresees growth in mobile gambling coming from all around the globe, with the largest push coming from the Asia-Pacific region. Total bets placed in Asia-Pacific is forecast to increase from $966 million in 2006 to a staggering $8.8 billion in 2011.

Mobile Gambling Market Drivers and Constraints Worldwide, 2006

However, not far behind, and in the same five-year period, total mobile betting in Europe is expected to grow from $950 million to $7.9 billion.

"There has been a lot of hype about mobile gambling, but the industry now seems to be taking a more realistic view on how the market will develop," said Mr. Gibson. "We anticipate that the mobile channel will push gambling services out to a broader/lower stake market than existing channels, offering opportunities for market growth where legislation permits."

Want to bet on it?

For more information on this subject, read the eMarketer report Online Gambling: Bet, Call or Fold.

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