Review of Canadian gambling industry
The history of casino gambling in Canada really begins during the 1980s, following the changes to the Criminal Code that allowed provinces to regulate and license gambling independently. Surprisingly, it was not until 1989 that Canada got its first casino, with Winnipeg being the location for it, but the subsequent decade saw them become widespread and the growth of the industry started in a major way. This article will take a look at the state of the gambling industry in Canada today and how it is developing.
Casino is an extremely lucrative industry in modern-day Canada, bringing in billions in revenue; however reports in the past couple of years present a somewhat less rosy picture for land-based casinos there. Places like Ontario enjoyed major economic booms as a result of the opening of casinos, but a combination of factors has seen this decline. The likes of the Casino Niagara and Fallsview have witnessed declining revenues – and the story is similar for most casinos in Canadian provinces located near to the border with the US. One of the major reasons for this appears to be the launching of rival casinos just across this border that are offering bonus vouchers designed to lure casino fans to gamble in the US rather than Canada. This is an issue unique to casinos close to the border, but a more widespread one is the rise of online and mobile casino options, which can also have a knock-on effect on land-based casinos. The very first online casino was launched in Canada in 1996 and there is now believed to be around 2000 of them – look out for Gambling Insider’s reviews of the best online casinos in Canada. This has also contributed to some of the struggles land-based casinos are experiencing, but has not led to the collapse of that industry. This is partly because studies indicate that the customer base for the two is slightly different, with online casino gamblers being younger and more generally interested in the internet than those who visit land-based casinos.
While online casino is definitely a growing part of the overall Canadian gambling industry, there are indicators that mobile casino is the direction things are headed in. The period between 2013 and 2015 witnessed a rise of 179 percent in the usage of mobile casino. This shift towards playing casino games on mobile devices has also been identified by the owners of online casinos such as Online Casinos Canada, and is leading to these companies moving to develop mobile options to retain their customers. It presents further challenges for land-based casinos, which cannot replicate the convenience and mobility offered by playing on a mobile phone, and this industry is looking at ways of capturing younger players through a blend of traditional casino games and video games.
It appears that mobile casino is taking off in Canada in a really big way now and this is set to be the next major evolution of the gambling industry in that country. Casino games inspired by video games could be another factor to watch out for though, as land-based venues seek ways to remain relevant.