The Rising Popularity of Gambling Apps

Gambling is one of the biggest pastimes in the world. Whether it is someone who likes to play scratch tickets from the local convenience store or a high-stakes sports bettor, a lot more gambling than you may realize is taking place on a daily basis. One way you may be able to notice is with a simple search for gambling apps in the app store for your mobile device. That search will result in hundreds of responses, and in that group, you will find everything from apps for learning purposes, some for full casinos, and others for games you probably didn't even know existed.

The popularity of gambling apps is undeniable now - they are here to stay. With the advancements in technology and the more lenient stance on gambling around the world, we expect that gambling apps will continue to fill up your phone. For now, let's look at how these apps became so popular and what games are downloaded more than others.

The Difference Between Popular and the Best Gambling Apps

We have to point something out when we talk about the popular gambling apps on the market today. If you go simply by the top lists that are provided by the app stores, you will find some decent sites there, but we think you need to do more digging when considering a real money gambling app for your deposit.

This site has a team of gambling experts that look at all the apps on the market, but we look at much more than the number of downloads of any particular app. The enjoyment that comes from a gambling app comes from more than just one thing, which is why our site and app reviews take into consideration a whole host of criteria. We look at everything from the app design to the game selection, and from the payment options to the promotions and bonuses offered by the operator. All of these factor into the overall gambling experience, so rather than give you a list of the most popular gambling apps, we have compiled a list of our most recommended apps.

This list below reflects the highest-rated of all the gambling apps that our team has reviewed over the years. You will see that they aren't all casinos or poker sites, and this mix means that there is a recommended app for whatever you are looking to play on your device. We encourage you to read the full reviews of these sites, or if you are willing to take our word for it, just click on the links above and add them to your device.

The Gambling App Market

So how did gambling apps get this popular in the first place? Well, it is a little more complicated than you might imagine. We all know that gambling in some form has been around as far back as we can track, with several "bones" games originating in ancient China. Over the years, the way gambling was delivered to players changed with the technology. Betting in local shops and casinos was soon joined by telephone sports betting. Internet gambling changed the entire industry, with players now able to stay in their homes to play the majority of their favorite games for real money.

Gambling on a Mobile Phone and Computer

When smartphone technology grew in the early 2000s, it was clear that this was going to be a way to deliver games of chance to players right to the palms of their hands. However, the platform developers were going to have a say about how and when these new "apps" were going to be available. Every app needs to be approved before being launched, and the two main platform providers, Google and Apple, had a very conservative stance on gambling. Both companies at first rejected the notion of real money gambling apps on their devices, citing concern for the public as one of the main reasons for the lack of approval.

What these companies couldn't stop was players finding ways to gamble via the browsers on the very same devices, so after much deliberation, each came up with their own set of rules regarding gambling apps. As soon as the position was more favorable for real money gambling, the floodgates opened.

Today, you can see the effects of the app world on gambling. Between online poker apps, lottery apps, and full gaming platforms, you can access any type of betting via an app on your phone or tablet. We are certain that when the United States finally finds a way to regulate online gambling properly, there will be another mad dash for memory space and approval in the app store.

Popular Gambling Apps

The easiest way to find gambling apps is to head to the app store on your phone and type in the word "gambling," but the results may surprise you. While you may be looking for a specific game, you will see many different gambling options listed. Let's take a look at some of the main categories of popular gambling apps.

Casino Apps

Having a full casino in your pocket seems too good to be true, but these days, it is very much a reality. There are hundreds of available casino apps, some focused on one or two games, with others offering every game you would find in a Vegas property. One thing is for certain: players love to pick up their phones and beat a slot machine within a couple of clicks, as can be seen by the most popular casino apps.

More on Casino Apps
Poker Apps

Poker is a game that really benefits from being available in an app. Many poker tournaments take hours to complete, so for someone to be able to take that poker table with them on the move has made the game much more convenient. These days, poker apps are some of the most popular in any app store, and even the ones that are for free play only are growing in popularity.

More on Poker Apps
Betting Apps

Sports betting continues to be incredibly popular in Europe and other regions where it is legal.

In the United Kingdom, for example, sports betting is part of the culture of the people who live there, so someone pulling up a sports betting app at the family dinner table would be considered acceptable behavior.

In these places, betting apps are incredibly popular and are gaining in overall use with the introduction of live betting, which gives players a chance to bet more than once during a sporting event.

More On Betting Apps
Horse Racing Apps

Without the app industry (and online gambling as a whole), it is difficult to say where the horse racing industry would be today. With fewer people heading to the racetrack than ever before, the betting on outcomes of races has become more important than ever to the business. Having a bettor able to make wagers and even watch the races from within an app on a mobile device has given new life to this failing industry.

More on Horse Racing Apps


We are only in the infancy of this app-driven market. As mobile technology continues to improve, so will the apps we use for everything in our daily life. This includes gambling apps, which will continue to grow in popularity as new games are added, new delivery methods like virtual reality are made more affordable, and when the restrictions on gambling apps are lifted in many countries where gaming is very popular in other forms.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are social gambling apps so popular?
First off, we here at his site don't consider social gambling apps to be gambling at all. Being able to buy chips for real money with no way to cash them back out for cash means that they have no value, and while you are playing games that are similar to those in a real-money environment, these apps are for entertainment. That is why these apps are so popular - because they don't require you to use cash (although people do to the tune of billions of dollars annually), but they are driven by achievements as aspiration.
If apps like Sudoku are so successful, why can't there be gambling versions of them?
There are some sites that are trying to cash in on the gambling aspect of games of skill. Companies like Skillz have created a template for tournament-style head-to-head competitions in games like Sudoku for real cash, although the legalities around these games are still unclear. And of course, the esports world is turning video gaming into a form of gambling with popularity so high that people are filling arenas to watch the top teams in the world battle for huge prizes.
Do daily fantasy apps really count as gambling apps?
Of course, they do! Daily fantasy sports burst onto the gambling scene in 2012 and has not looked back! Finding a loophole in the US gaming laws, daily fantasy was able to draw a massive following in a short period of time, and while the market is now maturing, it was built with mobile apps as the main delivery method. Today, more players use apps to access their DFS accounts than any other means.
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