With the launch of online gambling in Michigan and online sports betting in Virginia, last weekend was the busiest weekend in the history of American online gambling.
According to data from Conscious Gaming, there were record volumes in legal U.S. online gaming, both in virtual casinos and in sportsbooks. The two newest states to launch online gambling markets made up a quarter of the country’s online betting market.
In Virginia and Michigan alone, there were 7.5 million transactions from more than 400,000 betting accounts, which accounted for 25% of the total number of gambling transactions in the entire country.
Based on geolocation data, Michigan gamblers hit the ground running in the state’s first weekend of operation. The data showed that Michigan bettors had more transactions than any other state with regulated betting. The total betting handle could be larger in other states, however.
“Hundreds of thousands of people in Michigan and Virginia placed legal online bets for the first time this past weekend,” said Conscious Gaming’s vice president of corporate social responsibility Seth Palansky in a statement. “This demonstrates that Americans will abandon illegal websites and the street corner bookie to place their trust in companies that are accountable, provide robust consumer protections and responsible gaming measures.”
With the rollout of online gambling in Michigan and Virginia last weekend, there are now 17 states with legalized online betting of some form. At this time last year, there were only 10. And the number will only rise as other states slowly join in on the market.
New York could be one of the next to allow the activity as Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently changed his mind and is willing to expand sports betting online and on mobile apps. Previously, he had only supported sports betting through brick-and-mortar sportsbooks at the upstate casinos.