North America, and in particular the United States, has seen a rapid rise in all kinds of gambling activity in recent years. From traditional sports and entertainment betting to online casinos and iGaming, the gambling industry in the US is looking extremely healthy.

This can be put down to a variety of reasons, which we shall look at in turn. 
Changes in the laws

First and foremost, the US has different rules and regulations regarding gambling legislation depending on what state you live in. 

Recent changes to gambling laws spurred on by a historic win for the state of New Jersey in 2018 have dramatically altered the American gambling landscape. 

In New Jersey and a quickly growing number of other states, betting is now allowed on horse racing, sports events and casino games. 

After the New Jersey ruling, individual states can decide whether to legalize gambling and sports betting or not. 

The possible revenue generated through tax by companies enjoying a rise in gambling has made legalising sports betting and wagering an attractive prospect. 

Add a projected increase in employment and tourism, and it is clear why the law changes are happening at a fast pace.  

Online activity 

The rise of iGaming and online activity in general has also been a significant contributing factor in states deciding to legalise gambling. 

Online options to facilitate bet making and gambling make it convenient and reliable for both firms and players. 

This, plus the security advantages and flexibility associated with individual player accounts have boosted American attitudes towards online gambling. 

As well as New Jersey, other states that have recently taken advantage of relaxing control of their own rules on gambling include Delaware, Pennsylvania and New York.  

However, online gambling is only allowed in the US if the company is not based in the US itself. 

As we have seen, different states have their own gambling laws and the regulation surrounding the whole industry is in flux, so who knows what the future will be at this point. 

The state of play in Canada

Canada has one of the most relaxed systems of governance surrounding gambling activity. Most types of gambling are allowed in some sort across the entire country. 

This, plus the long history of betting in Canada, has made sports and gambling part of the country’s culture. Both indigenous Canadian communities and European settlers enjoyed games of chance and competing from long ago. 

Indeed, for much of the 15th century onwards, most gambling games and bets have been legal. The legal picture for online gambling is somewhat more complicated, as it with most other parts of the world.

However, the regulations have always been clearer than in the US. Much of this has been down to historic agreements between local governments and First Nations territories.   

A significant part of the continued importance of gambling to the country is the huge growth of the online casino in Canada, with various different casino games for Canadians to choose from.

Gambling in the UK and Europe 

European nations and the UK have long enjoyed a strong history of organised gambling in casinos and at sports events. 

The UK has practised betting on horseracing since at least the 17th century. Organised races and making a wager on the results have gone hand in hand.  

The keen racing fan and occasional jockey King Charles II established rules and regulations for horse racing. Gambling on the sport was organized during his reign. 

This organising of horse racing rules was also seen in France, Spain and Italy around this time.

Since then, the UK has been a centre for sports gambling and gaming of all kinds. Sports betting and gambling is enjoyed throughout the nation. 

From enjoying slot machines in public houses and cafes to making a bet on the horses or a football match, gambling culture in the UK is part of the lifestyle. 

This popularity of gaming also goes some way to explaining how the UK and Ireland became important locations for online gambling companies. 

iGaming has taken off there and in other European countries, providing new opportunities for both players and businesses.  

North America’s growth in the gambling market 

All of the indications show that the US and Canada may well overtake Europe as the centre for the gambling industry.

The potential financial rewards for online gambling worldwide are certainly impressive. The global online gambling market is tipped to be valued at over $92.9 billion by 2023

Currently, it stands at nearly $59 billion. As Canada and the US increase their own individual gambling entertainment markets, they may well benefit even more from this growth.

North America looks set to benefit from the huge rise in online gambling and iGaming. In the case of the US, new proposals will be put in place by states looking to allow gambling of some kind.

In Canada, gaming will continue to move forward, with games and sports bets enjoyed on smartphones, tablets and computers. 

The internet revolution is still reverberating in the gaming and gambling industries. What happens next is unclear, but it looks certain that North America will play an important part in it.  

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