It is the news that many people in Ontario have waited for – it is finally an officially regulated online gambling market. This new regulation was introduced just recently, so all Ontario residents will be able to place wagers on their favourite online casino games, sporting events, and everything else that a regulated online gambling site will offer.
They can do so from online websites as well as smartphone apps that are run by companies that have obtained a license to operate in the newly regulated market.
Online casinos are understandably very optimistic about the introduction of iGaming Ontario. It is the subsidiary of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario, and it will be the very first jurisdiction in Canada to accept bets in a regulated online gambling market. Here you can find the list of online casinos that accept players from Canada.
Gradual Licensing Process
At the moment of writing, iGaming Ontario has registered 25 operators. The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario has said that not all online gambling sites will go live immediately. They also expect the number of licensed operators to increase in the near future.
Before the introduction of iGaming Ontario, operators were quick to advertise their products to attract more players to their sites.
Game providers also look to enter the market as soon as possible. At the moment, Microgaming and White hat Gaming are just a couple of names that have already established their presence in Ontario. This means that punters there can look forward to some stunning tittles and a constant new release of games.
Responsible Gambling Measures
Of course, one of the very first steps that Ontario will take is to mitigate the negative effects gambling may have. The Ontario Alcohol and Gaming Commission has already established guidelines that fall in the harm-reduction section for all operators.
All online gambling sites will be required to have a system in place to monitor players for potential “harm”.
Additionally, operators will have to display responsible gambling messages and self-exclusion alternatives. Moreover, players will need to have access to 24-hour help resources. There will also be restrictions on ads directed at kids or that can be in any form misleading.
By the look of it, one of the most important aspects of player protection – responsible gambling, will be very neatly done in Ontario. Players will feel safe knowing that they have a mechanism in place to stop them from getting a gambling addiction problem.
What Does it Mean for Land-Based Casinos?
There were some fears and concerns that the legalization of the online gambling sector in Ontario may lead to big problems for the land-based establishment. However, it is safe to assume that the way the new regulation is introduced, the iGaming framework is there to complement rather than harm land-based casinos in any way.
It does so by giving land-based establishments new ways to make their services more diverse, as well as the chance to cross-promote online and offline locations.
Online Gambling in Ontario
Of course, gambling in Ontario and in Canada is not a new concept. However, the sector was rather closed for organizations that were from outside the province. Prior to the new regulation, there were no laws in place for outside sites.
Private operators now will be required to register and pay taxes, so they can get legal access to the province. In addition to generating a new revenue stream, the open market will protect all players in the province by giving an alternative to the grey market that was active until now.
The new regulation will now enable more responsible gaming, prevent underage people from gambling, and ensure compliance with applicable laws, such as anti-money laundering rules and regulations.