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Is South Africa the next e-gambling heaven?

by Agencies
27 Apr 2018 at 11:17hrs | Views
South Africa has developed a taste for online gambling during the last couple of years. Not that the country hasn't had its own fair share of enthusiasts before, but due to a restrictive legal climate they haven't been able to enjoy games of chance and skill to the fullest. Though internet wagering is still in limbo between fully regulated and illegal, younger generations of South Africans unequivocally expressed their love of casino games, sports betting and lotteries. Despite the uncertainty and the lack of viable options in their own home country, they went ahead and found international cyber casinos to sign them up and offer more variety and incentives than any domestic land-based venue. Foreign iGaming companies and investors noticed the increased demand in the sector and rushed over to seize the best positions in the up-and-coming market that suddenly found itself in the midst of online gaming boom. Compared to other developed markets that have been at the front of the industry for years, South Africa may be a late bloomer, but it has already proved a serious contestant for the most attractive region for operators and players alike.

Gaming Boom

With the bulk of the consumers made up of hard-to-please millennials, the country could not have chosen a better time to enter the global stage. Gaming industry grows at an unprecedented rate and the competitive edge within is sharper than ever. In a race to win over young gamers who quickly lose interest unless a product has the capacity and potential to yield engaging results continually, operators embrace innovation, latest technologies and social media channels to create appealing products. Design, games and incentives are all part of the equation to work out next-generation online casinos. South Africa's thriving economy provides opportunities for more and more consumers to acquire a stable internet connection, latest mobile, desktop and tablet devices, and to able to afford a financially demanding pastime such as gambling. Currently, the country boasts the largest and most productive market on the continent, even though other regions have more lenient laws or better overall conditions to rise to the top. Revenue generated from the online sector on the entire African continent reached an incredible figure of $1 billion in 2014, with South Africa as the single highest contributor.

Mobiles Over Laptops

Luckily for local fans of slots, table games, bingo and sports, it seems as though the best quality gaming sites are more than willing to take their place in the country's growing market. Established companies have been showing a marked interest in the zone, despite the fact that some gaming forms have not yet been fully legalized. Bingo and lottery players are currently in the best position as these genres have already received their lawful status, in addition to virtual betting in recent times. As it now seems, the casino sector will come last, but fans have reasonable grounds to remain optimistic, despite the government's strong opposition. The National Gambling Act has banned online casinos since 2004. While authorities acknowledge a significant loss in tax revenue beyond borders on international gambling sites soliciting local players, South Africa's Department of Trade and Industry is still against internet wagering regulation, mostly due to social risks involved. However, the good news is the official regulatory bodies are currently more interested in physical gaming shops and so-called internet cafes operating illegally across the country, than chasing down thousands of foreign e-gaming companies offering wagering services within the borders. The situation leaves more room for players to enjoy a vast and rich virtual gaming world from home and without fear of legal consequences.

Positive Development

One of the reasons why South Africa has so suddenly and successfully plunged into e-gaming is the growing popularity of mobiles among tech-savvy generations, which coincided with the iGaming industry's own embrace of mobile technologies. All major platforms are gearing towards mobile convenience, with bigger and more varied selections of mobile slots and card games. Even the latest technological accomplishments such as virtual reality have first been implemented into mobile-supported gaming sites, specifically to be launched on smartphones with gyroscope sensors and VR headphones. With a strong economy and a high percentage of the population in favor of gaming regulations, South Africa is sure to become an online gambling paradise in the near future.

Source - Agencies