The past year was a turning point for many verticals, and the gambling industry has been seriously affected by the Corona crisis. This applies in full to brick-and-mortar casinos as their halls remained empty for quite a while.
Though the gambling market in the UK is often considered one of the most profit-making industries on a global scale, the lockdowns have led to significant changes in its size and growth.
The outlook for the online gambling industry in the UK for this year seems to be marked by the attempts of the Gambling Commission to reduce the harm from gambling by improving the standards. In this article, we will focus on the legislative and the other shifts the online gambling industry is most likely to undergo in the months to come.
Attempts of the Gambling Commission to Make Online Betting Safer
The UK is easily one of the countries that have gone through a thorny path when it comes to the regulation of the different forms of gambling. The legal framework in the country, which has to do with gambling is based on the provisions established under the Gambling Act 2005, while the Gambling Commission is tasked with the duties to oversee such activities.
The introduction of the ban on the use of credit cards for gambling-related transactions and the availability of free-to-play games to players who are yet to verify their age are only some of the changes that have a significant impact on the gambling industry in the country.
After the lockdowns that were necessitated by the Corona crisis, the engagement of Brits in gambling-related activities has been heavily on the rise, and the Gambling Commission was quick to recognize this trend.
The changing shape and size of the online gambling industry are what urged the Gambling Commission to gather three working groups that will direct their efforts towards tackling problem gambling.
Loyalty schemes, gambling-related advertisements, and safer design of the products are the main points of attention for the working groups. Under the newly updated guidelines of the Commission, players can only be given access to the loyalty scheme of the gaming site if they are over the age of 25. With the new rules that were introduced in October 2020, stricter control is envisaged also for other VIP customers of the betting sites. Casino Guardian is a casino-related source of information players might find quite useful if they want to have up-to-the-minute information on the topic.
Further Restrictions Gamblers Might be Facing in 2021
One of the issues the working groups have addressed is the safety of the game designs. The gambling products Brits will gain access to should be much safer, and to achieve this, the group proposed the introduction of a mandatory ceiling on the losses, as well as a spin speed of 2.5 seconds.
Other options such as multiple-screen play, slam stop, turbo mode, and quick spin should be disabled too. The main reason why the respective working group has called against them is that they are designed to reduce the speed at which the reels are spinning.
A reduction in the volume of advertisements seen by vulnerable adults, children, and young people are also among the objectives the groups have set.
Something vital, which is worth noting is that the British government has called for the revisions of the Gambling Act 2005 in order to guarantee that its provisions respond to the technological age. The call for evidence will go on for 16 weeks, and its end date is in March this year, meaning that it is about to be determined what other changes might be proposed.
Under the new rules that were already approved, residents of the country who are under the age of 18 are no longer permitted to purchase lottery tickets.
The minimum age for playing the National Lottery is expected to come into effect in October 2021, while under the current plans of the government, 16 and 17 years old Brits will no longer be allowed to purchase such tickets from April 2021.
Other important upcoming changes in 2021 include imposing limits on the wagers placed over the Internet, as well as further age limits. In the months to come, the Commission is expected to set out new rules that have to do with the cashout of players’ winnings too.
To cut a long story short, the legislative changes that are about to be seen this year will undoubtedly continue to take center stage in the following months. Other trends to look out for in 2021 are the marked interest in mobile play and betting on sports. Additionally, many experts consider that e-sports are also likely to get even greater attention from gambling enthusiasts during this year, but what will ultimately come about is yet to be seen.