Connecticut has freshly welcomed online gambling to its array of domestic casino and sportsbook services. This was executed via a soft launch, to test software security before an all-out launch.
Terms of the Soft Launch
Only 750 accounts per operator are allowed to participate in the soft launch services. During the soft launch, gaming is only to occur during restricted hours. Additionally, the players are only allowed to engage with a limited selection of games.
The services excluded from this soft launch are live dealer and peer-to-peer gambling. CT gaming officials have said that, if all goes to plan, the full market will go live on October 19th.
Right now, things are going well with the soft launch and officials expect no issues to arise before the 19th. Kaitlyn Krasslet, a spokesperson for the Department of Consumer Protection said the following:
“Everything is going well so far, and our team is looking forward to continuing to work with the operators through the rest of the soft launch…”
Unlike other states, Connecticut’s gambling expansion included provisions for online casino games. Under these rules over 100 different online casino games will become available to players.
Tribes Get Exclusive Access
However, these services are exclusive to the state’s Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot Tribes. This means that DraftKings and FanDuel, respectively, have the opportunity to roll out the state’s first domestic online casinos.
If the online casinos are well-received and well-maintained, these companies may be allowed to expand their US casino presence.
The tribes already have a head-start in comparison to the state’s other gaming entities. Because of their sovereign status, the Mohegan Sun and Foxwood casinos obtained permission to open retail sportsbooks early.
With more than two weeks of successful sports betting operations up their sleeve, the casinos are expected to dominate the market.
Even so, the state’s Lottery Commission will offer online sportsbook services through a partnership with Rush Street Interactive. The online sportsbook has already gone live, operating under the name PlaySugarHouse.
Expectations For The CT Market
The state’s Lottery Commission isn’t expected to be a huge competitor for the Mohegan Sun and Foxwood online casinos. However, that may not be the case when it comes to retail betting.
This is because the Lottery Commission will have an advantage over the in-person betting market. While the tribes are limited to their casino locations, the Connecticut Lottery Commission is free to open betting kiosks wherever it pleases.
Watching how the competition unfolds will be indicative of whether CT gamblers generally prefer online or in-person domestic betting.
However, this metric isn’t all that accurate as seasoned gamblers stick to offshore online casinos and sportsbooks. And it makes sense: offshore players get the perks of gambling without government oversight or taxation.
Source: NBC Connecticut