Sports betting has been around for centuries, with the first recorded instance dating back to Greece in the 9th century BC. Since then, betting on sports has evolved and grown in popularity, culminating in the online sports betting industry we know today. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at the history of online sports betting and how it became the multi-billion dollar industry it is today.
According to https://smartbettingguide.com/ the first recorded instance of sports betting dates back to Greece in the 9th century BC when citizens would bet on chariot races. In the Roman Empire, citizens would bet on gladiatorial combats. Fast forward to the 14th century, and we see the first instances of organized sports betting in England. The term “odds” was first used during this time to describe the probability of an event occurring. For example, if the odds of an event were 2-1, that meant there was a 2 in 3 chance of it happening.
By the 18th century, sports betting had become so popular in England that it was considered a national pastime. Parliament even tried to pass a law banning all gambling except for horse racing, but it was ultimately unsuccessful. In the early 1800s, organized crime began to get involved in sports betting, which led to allegations of fixing and corruption. This culminated in a nationwide ban on all gambling in 1909.
The ban on gambling remained in place for over 50 years, until it was finally lifted in 1961. This resulted in a boom in legal bookmaking shops across the country. However, these bookies were still operating primarily offline; it wasn’t until the late 1990s that online sports betting really began to take off.
In 1994, Antigua and Barbuda passed the Free Trade & Processing Act, which allowed companies to apply for licenses to open online casinos. Two years later, Microgaming—one of the world’s leading online casino software providers—was founded. This paved the way for the first ever online casino, Gaming Club Casino, which launched in October 1995. A year later, InterCasino—powered by Cryptologic—became the first internet-based casino to accept real money wagers.
At around the same time, small companies began springing up all over the world with the sole purpose of offering online sports betting services. One of these companies was Australia-based Centrebet International Limited, which became operational in March 1996 and is now one of Australia’s leading online bookmakers. Another early entrant into the market was UK-based StarLuck Casino Limited—now known as Ladbrokes—which began offering online gambling services in 1998.
It wasn’t until 2001 that online sports betting really began to take off. This was thanks to the launch of two major platforms: Betfair and Betdaq. These platforms allowed punters to bet against each other (rather than against the bookmaker), which made for a more dynamic and exciting experience.
The Modern Era Of Online Sports Betting
Today, there are hundreds of different online sports betting sites available to punters all over the world. In addition, with the rise of mobile technology, it’s now possible to place bets anywhere at any time – all you need is a smartphone or tablet and an internet connection.
What’s more, thanks to live streaming services like Twitch and YouTube Gaming, punters can now watch live coverage of their favorite sporting events and place bets at the same time. This has created a whole new sub-industry known as ‘esports betting’, which is now worth billions of dollars per year.
Today, there are hundreds of different online sportsbook operators catering to punters all over the world. The global online gambling market is now worth an estimated $46 billion and is expected to continue growing at a rapid pace over the next few years.
Sports betting has been around for centuries and has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry thanks to its convenient online presence. Today, there are hundreds of different online sportsbooks catering to punters all over the globe; allowing them to bet on everything from horse racing and tennis to football and basketball. Whether you’re a seasoned gambler or just getting started, there’s an online sportsbook out there for you!