Brits have a long history of gambling dating back centuries. From wagering on street games to gambling dens and now online casinos, the UK gambling market has witnessed significant growth over the years.
Brits not only participate in local lotteries but also buy international lottery tickets, including the Brazilian Mega Sena. Although fewer people participated in gambling in 2021 (22.5 million people compared to 23.3 million in 2017), the growth is now on an upward trend and is expected to grow even further in 2024.
The Canary takes an in-depth look at the future growth of the UK’s gambling landscape to give you an insight of what to expect in the coming years.
So, whether you are looking for investment opportunities or just wondering how the UK gambling market growth in 2024 compares to the rest of the world, read along to learn the drivers of this growth.
Growth expectation for the UK gambling market in 2024
A survey conducted by Technavio indicates that the UK gambling market size will grow at a CAGR of 5.36%, estimated to be an increase of $3,284.27 million between 2023 and 2028.
Another survey by Statista indicates that annual online sports betting revenue in the UK will grow at a rate of 5.92% between 2023 and 2027. This will result in a market volume of $5.30 billion by 2027.
Moreover, user penetration will increase to 21.3%, equivalent to about 14.8 million users by 2027.
Drivers of UK gambling market growth in 2024
Although more factors will enable the growth of the UK gambling market in 2024, let’s look at the main factors that will push this growth.
1. Growth of online gambling
The digital transformation has propelled online gambling to new heights. Because consumers now seek convenience and accessibility, online platforms are expected to dominate the market in 2024.
Mobile gambling, in particular, is anticipated to grow substantially, driven by the widespread use of smartphones and improved mobile connectivity. Mobile phones are the most common way to access online gambling sites, but other devices like smartwatches are gaining popularity as well.
For this reason, we can expect operators to invest heavily in mobile-friendly interfaces, innovative features, and personalised experiences to stay ahead in this competitive landscape. In fact, some gaming sites already have mobile-specific bonuses and rewards.
2. Technological advancements
The rapid evolution of technology continues to reshape the gambling landscape. In 2024, the UK gambling market is anticipated to experience a surge in technological advancements, particularly in the online and mobile sectors. Here are key tech advancements that will promote growth.
- AI (artificial intelligence) – AI has revolutionised almost all online sectors worldwide; the same is expected in gambling. Many gaming sites have already adopted AI to enhance user experience. They leverage this technology to create tailored gaming experiences based on players’ styles and preferences. Moving forward to 2024, we’ll likely see more gaming sites use AI to enhance security levels, fair play and detect and prevent fraud.
- Virtual reality (VR) gaming – Like AI, virtual reality is still in its early stages but is already disrupting the industry. VR enables game developers to design real-life-like experiences so that gamers feel like gaming events are happening in real life. As a result, players can explore digital casinos as if they are physically present.
- Blockchain and cryptocurrencies – Players trusting an operator when it comes to fairness is really important. For this reason, many online operators are using blockchain technology to help players verify fair gaming conditions. Additionally, the use of cryptos helps in enhancing security and streamline transactions. Moving to 2024, we expect all gaming sites to adopt these technologies and include more digital currencies apart from the usual Bitcoin and Ethereum.
3. Regulatory reforms
One of the primary drivers of the expected growth in the UK gambling market is the ongoing regulatory reforms. The industry has been subject to increased scrutiny in recent years, prompting the UK government to implement measures to ensure consumer protection and responsible gambling.
However, the measures have been reasonable for both players and operators, unlike in countries like China and India, where restrictions imposed have impacted the industry negatively. Regulatory clarity is expected to foster a more stable and secure environment for operators and players, encouraging growth and investment.
Like the rest of the world, the UK gambling market is expected to grow significantly in 2024 because of key factors mentioned above. As such, the industry stakeholders must navigate this dynamic landscape with a strategic and forward-thinking approach to capitalise on emerging opportunities.
Featured image by johan10 – Envato Elements