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Google Permits Distribution of Real-Money Gambling Apps in 15 More Countries

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2021-04-21

Eddy Cheung

When it comes to the best mobile gambling platforms, iOS and Android stand tall. But unlike the Apple App Store that allows the distribution of real-money gambling apps, Google has had a long-held resistance towards distributing gambling apps on Play Store. Fortunately, the company has been softening its stand since 2017 when it allowed gambling app distribution in France, Brazil, the UK, and Ireland. So, is the latest change of heart due to Apple competition? Or, is it for revenue purposes?

Google Permits Distribution of Real-Money Gambling Apps in 15 More Countries

Google Starts Distributing Gambling Apps in 15 Additional Countries

Online casino and sportsbook players in the US and 14 other countries will directly search and download gambling apps starting March 1, 2021. This is splendid news considering that mobile gambling is the real deal in most countries with online gambling regulations. Apart from the US, the new list includes Canada, Australia, Japan, Finland, Denmark, Belgium, Colombia, Mexico, Norway, New Zealand, Sweden, Spain, Romania, and Germany.

According to the company, the newly allowed countries have conducive legislation to enable mobile casino apps distribution on Play Store. With more countries developing legal frameworks to regulate online gambling, it’s only a matter of time before players download mobile casino apps in more countries.

Strict Requirements for Operators

  • As expected, getting the green light to distribute gambling apps on Google’s Play Store comes with strings attached. The developer must:
  • Comply with all gambling laws in the jurisdiction they wish to distribute their apps.
  • Have a valid gambling license in the area they want to operate it.
  • Not offer any gambling product not stipulated in the gambling license.
  • Prevent underage gambling.
  • Ensure that the app is free to download and install from Play Store.
  • Ensure the app is rated Adult Only or International Age Rating Coalition equivalent.
  • Display information about responsible gambling on the app listing. It’s important to note that Google will only permit gambling apps for sports betting, online casinos, lottery and daily fantasy sports. Also, most of the added countries/territories will only allow government-run lottery apps. Nonetheless, it’s a significant step forward.

    How Does This Move Impact the Gambling Industry?

    As said, Google only started distributing real-money gambling apps a few years ago. But that’s not to say Android users couldn’t place wagers. Typically, operators allow Android and iOS users to download apps directly from their websites or other third-party channels. In return, this made it costly to promote and maintain the apps. Players also find it challenging to download the apps from third-party sources.

But with the company now opening its gates for gambling apps, online gambling will only grow bigger. According to a 2017 study, Android has a 64% market share, with the number expected to rise further. This success is mainly because Android phones and tablets are readily available in emerging gambling markets like Africa and Asia. All in all, the latest move is a win-win scenario for all parties involved.

Gambling Convenience and Security

Following this announcement, online casino players will now enjoy their favorite mobile casino games on the go. Unlike before when players had to download APK apps, you’re now just a tap away from installing that gambling app. Also, players in the whitelisted countries will now have an easier time finding reviews about particular gambling apps. As you may already know, Google Play Store allows users to rate apps based on user experience.

Meantime, the latest move means that mobile casino gamers in these countries will only get top-cream apps. In short, you don’t have to worry much about the legality of the gambling apps as Google has already done the donkey work for you. Just don’t forget that safe gambling entails more than licensing and regulation. All said and done, Google will keep the reigns, at least for now.

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AUTHOREddy Cheung

I remember the first time I saw Kai Tak, Hong Kong's gambling city, I thought I was in a fairy tale. All the lights blinking, the music and the monumental buildings, what 9-year-old wouldn’t think they’ve come to a magical place? It was my father who brought me, dragging me along and when inside I was hit by the smell of frying duck. As soon as I hit 21 I returned to Kai Tak, A bit nervous to see if my mind had embellished the memory, but it hadn’t. Kai Tak was still a magical place. I decided I wanted to spend as much time as I could at this place, so I did. For the next coming years I lived and breathed Kai Tak. Now I am married with kids, and they have become a part of my life too. That’s why I started exploring online casinos to create a better work-life balance and I couldn’t be happier!

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