As the sports betting industry continues to gain traction in the United States of America and across the world, streaming service providers are now taking a keen interest in the young and thriving market.
A vast majority of leading streaming services have already incorporated betting features in their portfolios. This augments their customers’ experience while also serving as an additional source of revenue.
Industry leaders such as DAZN, Sling, Disney, and FuboTV have either debuted a sports betting companion, partnered with third parties, or expressed an interest in exploring the space. These companies realize that gambling has been synonymous with sports for centuries, and there is a ton of money to be made.
A purview of the Thriving Sports Betting Market
In May of 2018, The Supreme Court delivered a decision that repealed the federal law that barred sports betting. Ever since, the sports gambling market has witnessed immense growth on a state-to-state basis.
The Supreme Court’s decision paved the way for state governments to legalize sports betting, with New Jersey swinging into action almost immediately. Today, about 34% of sports fans in the United States bet on a weekly basis. If you are looking for a reputable bookie in Pennsylvania, try the best PA sports betting sites compared and rated by experts.
According to data released by Ampere Analysis, sports fans spend an average of $51 on wagers each week. These sports die-hard fans spend about 3.2 hours on fantasy gaming every week. These statistics show a significant opportunity for streaming services hoping to engage their customers, differentiate their offerings, and expand their business.
The legalization of sports betting at the state level is set to keep growing over the next couple of years. “There is a trend for sports betting becoming not just lawful but more mainstream,” noted Mike Berkley, the Chief Product Officer at FuboTV.
Disney’s Interest in Pursuing the Betting Market
During the company’s recent earnings call, Bob Chapek (Disney’s Boss) told his shareholders that they were moving towards the greater presence of online sports betting. Chapek also noted that betting is an agenda Disney is keenly interested in and determined to pursue.
“We strongly believe that online sports betting presents a significant opportunity for our company. In our cause to follow the customer, we must consider venturing into the gambling space in a bigger and bigger manner. ESPN is the ideal platform to achieve this objective,” noted Chapek.
Unsurprisingly, Disney is not the only streaming service company interested in the sports betting market.
Dish Shakes Hands with DraftKings
Early last year, Dish entered into a partnership with giant sportsbook DraftKings to incorporate the latter’s fantasy contests and sportsbook into its Dish TV Hopper platform as a thoughtful app integration.
One of Dish’s subsidiaries, Sling TV Service, supports a cohesive DraftKings experience for sports gambling. The platform is also known to offer its users dedicated betting information.
FuboTV Launched its Proprietary Sportsbook
In November 2021, FuboTV debuted its proprietary sports betting feature in Iowa. According to the company’s spokesperson, they are already in the process of maneuvering through regulatory hurdles to set up operations in other states.
Peacock and NBC Sports are in the Race Too
These two giant streaming houses signed separate partnership deals with one of the sports betting market leaders, PointsBet, for betting integrations.
It is clear that every streaming service wants a piece of the promising sports gambling market. The race is on, and since the genie is already out of the bottle, there is no going back.
DAZN Expresses Interest in Joining the Race
According to Kevin Mayer, the company’s Chairman, DAZN is planning to join the sports gambling market directly where possible. When speaking to The Verge, DAZN spokesman Graham James made it clear that they consider recreational gambling a great addition to their platform.
“This will create a safe, fun, more immersive, and enjoyable experience for our customers across all markets,” noted Graham James.
Why Is Every Savvy Streaming Company Taking an Interest in Sports Betting?
The fact that all these leading streaming service providers are publicly talking about joining the sports betting space simply shows that they are confident it’s too big an opportunity to miss out on.
Considering that sports gambling has traditionally been labeled a taboo, these streaming companies are gambling that the public’s opinion has shifted in the past few years. Chapek categorically stated that he was not oblivious to the fact that the move poses some risk for a blemish-less brand like Disney.
However, Chapek also added that betting would go a long way to strengthen its sports portfolio, especially among youthful audiences.
How the Streaming-Betting Marriage is Designed to Work
There are numerous ways of integrating betting into the streaming space. Different streaming companies have taken different approaches. Dish supports sports gambling via a DraftKings integration on Hopper devices that allows users to jump straight to the DraftKings Platform upon scanning a QR code.
Sling is currently using a text-based redirect strategy that users can initiate from a menu icon within its platform. Meanwhile, FuboTV’s betting is supported by the company’s proprietary sportsbook app integration that’s designed to sync whatever is happening on your TV.
However, these companies will have to reconsider how they deliver the betting option to their target audiences. While Chapek says that Disney is considering working with third parties on its gambling offerings, FuboTV is determined to go solo.
There are profound challenges to both approaches. Though we’ve got plenty of reputable sportsbooks, sports betting through these platforms is not available in all 50 states. On the other hand, launching and marketing a proprietary sportsbook will mean investing hundreds of millions of dollars.
The big question will be: What’s the best way for us to monetize and cover ground?
It’s beyond reasonable doubt that the sports betting market is set to skyrocket to unprecedented highs. With the legal sports betting market being barely half a decade old, the gold rush is much expected.
Streaming service providers are positioning themselves to tap into the betting revenue stream that has been barging year-over-year. While this is good news for the companies and tax collectors, what steps are these players taking to protect their consumers from the gambling menace?