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The Future of Online Gambling and Cell Phones

By: Anthony Wayne

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Despite the boom and bust cycles that the internet periodically experiences there is one activity that has constantly made money that activity is online gambling. Internet access via cell phones has long been a reality and soon e-gamers will be able to access their favorite games such as online bingo, blackjack, lotteries, and most forms of internet gambling on their cell phones.

New smart phones are essentially mini PC's with high resolution screens, and lots of processor power with full operating systems. The bounds of technology are being pushed further every year and the possibilities this presents to the online gambling industry are seemingly endless. The days of sitting in front of a PC or having to find a wireless connection are a thing of the past.

There are several factors that contribute to the expansion of online gambling to mobile devices.Mobile industry analysts predict that in the very near future prices for mobile internet access will drop dramatically. Already many cellular carriers are starting to redesign their pricing plans. Cellular carriers have recently spent vast amounts of money to upgrade their networks for high speed data access. Of course they will need consumers to use their product to recoup their investment, hence the drop in prices.

With the improvements in mobile phone and PDA technology some experts predict mobile gaming revenues to increase by 900% in the next three years. In 2004 online casino gambling generated$48.3 billion in revenue and is expected to generate $70.6 billion dollars by 2009. Even state lotteries (most notably Massachusetts) are getting into the act with a few states already considering online mobile gaming as a way to generate greater profits.

How will all this affect the average online gambler? No longer will online gamblers be limited to sitting in front of their PC or having to wait to find a wireless connection. For now the options of online gamblers are limited, but not for long industry experts say. Casino games where the player competes against the house are already available and include such games as blackjack, roulette, slots, and craps. Games where players compete against each other such as online bingo and poker are a bit more difficult to translate to wireless but solutions appear close.

The convenience of mobile devices will be a major attraction to the online gambler. Imagine, if you will, being a passenger on a long boring road trip. With a cell phone or wireless device online gamblers will be able to play poker, online bingo, or bet on sporting events. One major European airline will be offering online bingo to it's passengers in the near future.

Sports bettors, who rely on the timing of their bets, will no longer have to access a PC or go to a betting parlor. Progressive slots players will be able to place bets from their cell phones if they have a hunch that a large progressive jackpot is about to hit. The possibilities are almost endless for both amateur and serious online gamblers.

This technology surpasses the usefulness of wireless laptops which need a router to receive a signal. With a cell phone or wireless device all that is needed is a satellite signal which at present is available almost anywhere. Even if your first choice is to play from a PC, players should consider downloading mobile software on their cell phone to have on standby in case the situation arises where a bet must be placed or a particular game must be played at that very moment.

Players should be sure to familiarize themselves with the mobile playing interface because the navigation on a mobile device will be different from what is found on a PC. Cell phone gambling is a fast growing economy; anyone can participate, so get in there and play!

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Anthony Wayne works in the marketing department of online bingo site BingoHouse in Costa Rica. He is also editor of the Internet Bingo Blog a great source of internet bingo information.

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