10 Surprising Facts You Didn’t Know About Gambling

Written by: Webster Lupton, Casino, Gambling, and Sports Journalist
5 minute read
10 Mind Blowing Facts About Online Casinos

Gambling’s most recent growth spurt began in the 1990s when the World Wide Web put a casino anywhere with internet access. And with the invention of the smartphone, we can now also carry a casino in our pocket.

As a result, about 85% of American adults say they have tried online gambling. There are plenty of interesting facts and lore about wagering over the years. Read on to learn about 10 fun gambling facts that will blow your mind.

10 Interesting Facts About Gambling And Casinos

So without further ado, here is our list of 10 mind-blowing facts about online gambling that you probably didn’t know about.


The Online Casino Industry Is Not Even 30 Years Old

The Online Casino Industry Is Not Even 30 Years Old

A relatively new industry, internet wagering has grown into an economic force.

In 1996, InterCasino went live with the first real money online casino. By 1997, more than 200 internet casinos had followed suit and collected around $1 billion a year.

Since those days, the online gambling industry has exploded, hitting more than $66 billion in revenue in 2020, and expected to cross $100 billion in the next few years.  


Mobile Gambling Is Revolutionizing The Industry

Mobile Gambling Is Revolutionizing The Industry

Online gambling is an offspring of technology, and hi-tech advances have contributed to gambling’s growth. One of the most significant breakthroughs was the smartphone and mobile internet access. 

Nowadays, more than 6.6 billion people worldwide use smartphones, nearly three times the number of people with PCs.

The European Business Review estimates that mobile casinos make up to 70% of online betting revenue. 


Online Gambling Peaked During The Covid Lockdown

Online Gambling Peaked During The Covid Lockdown

During the lockdown of 2020-21, the term “shelter in place” became familiar. It meant “shelter and place a bet” for many, which resulted in online gambling experiencing a swift surge.

Land-based casinos shut down along with other businesses, and people who like playing games turned to online casinos more than ever before.

This mix of new and old customers caused the global online gambling market to grow by about $8 billion in 2021. The UK Gambling Commission said that 64% of gamblers played more online during the lockdown.


Gamblers Are Getting Younger

Gamblers Are Getting Younger

People that have grown up in the internet age have turned to all sorts of iGaming outlets for entertainment. So, it is not hard to deduce that online gambling appeals more and more to the younger set.

A revealing statistic published by the American Gambling Association (AGA) shows that the average age of gamblers dropped from 49.5 in 2019 to 43.5 years old in 2021. The younger iGaming crowd obviously accounted for that change. 


Roulette Used To Be Called The Devil’s Game

Roulette Used To Be Called The Devil's Game

A note from the quirky side of gaming history is that roulette used to be called “the devil’s game.” Someone once added up the numbers on a roulette wheel, and it came to 666, the so-called mark of the beast.

There was a running joke that the creator of roulette, Blaise Pascal, made a deal with the devil.

But you can’t really say the game is cursed. Real money roulette has one of the best return-to-player ratings in any casino.


Slot Games Used to Be Fruit Gum Machines

Slot Games Used to Be Fruit Gum Machines

One of the early versions of slot machines in the early 1900s offered the option of a gum vending attachment. Players put coins in the slot, pulled the lever, and out came a chew or two.

The gum offered for these machines came in fruit flavors, such as cherry, lemon, orange, etc. So fruit symbols were placed on the reels, and the slots became known as fruit machines.

The tradition holds today. The fruit symbols are still a mainstay on the most modern 3-reel online slots.


The Use Of Cryptocurrencies Is Rising

The Use Of Cryptocurrencies Is Rising

Internet gambling and cryptocurrency have been a perfect pair during this hi-tech age.

Ever since the creation of Bitcoin in 2009, online bettors have growingly recognized the advantages of using cryptocurrencies to gamble.

There are now thousands of digital currencies in use, and the blockchain technology that drives them is the basis for their growing popularity with online gamblers.

Cryptocurrency doesn’t depend on any governmental or banking authority, and gamblers like it for its fast, private, secure, and fee-free transactions.


Gambling Addiction Is A Real Thing

Gambling Addicition is a Real Thing

Gambling is great entertainment, but all of that fun can become problematic. Studies show that around 10 million people in the US and millions more worldwide experience gambling addiction.

That’s why the best online casinos and regulatory authorities take measures to help protect people from problem gambling.

All of the top internet casinos have Responsible Gaming sections and links to sites that offer problem-gambling help. They let you set time limits and overspending alerts, order periodic closure of your account or even ban yourself from the account altogether. 


Las Vegas Is Not The World’s Gambling Capital

Las Vegas Is Not The World's Gambling Capital

Folks in the US like to think Las Vegas is the center of the gambling world. It’s not, at least according to revenue statistics.

That distinction goes to the Chinese city of Macau, where casinos take in about $29 billion a year. That’s about seven times more than the Vegas handle.

Why Macau? Its special administrative status allows it to be the only gambling destination in China. Monaco, Atlantic City, London, and Paris are other top hubs.


The Biggest Jackpot Ever

The Biggest Jackpot Ever

This one could change any time, but outside of the lottery, you would have to turn to slots to find the biggest jackpot ever. People like playing progressive slots because of the potential to win huge jackpots.

In 2003, an anonymous person spent $100 on the famous Megabucks slot at the Excalibur Casino in Las Vegas.

This person hit on just the right combination, and all the lights and alarms went off. Their $100 investment turned into a haul of $39.7 million.

Webster Lupton

Webster Lupton Casino, Gambling, and Sports Journalist

Webster Lupton is a journalist and expert sports and casino writer with over 30 years of experience. Webster is a seasoned researcher and a published author. He also enjoys the outdoors and birdwatching.

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