An exciting summer of internationally renowned sporting events from Wimbledon to the World Cup has only reinforced that which is obvious: the world loves a good sports game. 

The hysteria of the World Cup alone has been highlighted by the revenue that the worldwide event generated – it’s estimated that the tournament made $4 billion, of which $1.7 billion was taken up by television rights, $1.4 billion in marketing revenue and $900 million in other rights.

One area of the World Cup, and indeed sports in general, that has seen a huge increase in revenue in recent years is sports betting. Bigger budgets, celebrity endorsements and developments in technology have all contributed to this rise, and it’s an industry that’s only going to grow.

In particular, online sports betting has seen an exponential rise. In the USA, for example, the industry has grown from a net worth of $7.4 million to $39.5 million between 2003 and 2014. By next year, it’s estimated to be worth $41.4 billion.

But what is it that’s made sports betting so popular in recent years? Improved accessibility, for one, has seen interest in sports betting skyrocket – while ten years ago, people would have to venture outdoors to a bookmakers to place a bet, now we can bet from the comfort of our own homes.

The advent of the internet has played a huge part in people’s interest in sports betting and sports in general , with video streaming encouraging today’s bettors to watch their favourite games on the move.

In May 2012, Level 3 Communications conducted a survey into smartphone users’ views on live video streaming. 2,000 men and women who watched sport on TV and online took part in the survey and the results were very interesting – 46 per cent of participants said that smartphones have “transformed” their sports viewing experience.

Moreover, it was revealed that video streaming was just as popular as live TV, particularly amongst the 18-24 age group. In an age where purchasing costly ‘catch up’ television features is cumbersome to a number of demographics, it’s no surprise that consumers are turning to online streaming to watch their favourite sports.

In turn, with 4G giving us access to video streaming not just through high broadband speeds at home but also on the go, it’s no surprise that sports betting has seen an increase. Many of today’s sporting events are sponsored by online betting sites or casinos, with advertisements giving viewers added incentive to have a flutter.

Whether it’s better marketing, more convenience or just improved technology, the betting market is changing, and it sports betting could soon be one of the world’s leading industries.

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