Nielson Media Research recently completed a study that showed online casinos and online gambling was more popular with Internet users than were social networking sites, in particular Facebook, last year.
Nielson’s research showed that in the United Kingdom, 3.2 million people visited online gambling sites last year, while 2.2 million logged on to Facebook and other social networking sites. The number of visitors to online gambling sites represented a 40 percent increase over the year before.
“While the phenomenal growth in gambling sites over the last two years has been driven by men and women of all ages, it appears to be powered particularly by middle-aged men, the well-educated, and high-earning households,” said Nielson’s Neil Beston. According to Beston, historically, it was senior citizen and lower income households that contributed more to online gambling revenues.
Bricks and mortar casino facilities have been around for hundreds of years, but the recent development of Internet-based gambling facilities has made gambling much more accessible and convenient for millions of individuals. The first Internet-based casino debuted in 1995 and since then, countless others have popped up in all corners of the online community, offering members the chance to play games such as roulette, blackjack, and slots from the comfort of their own homes.
One such online casino, SkyVegas, was developed in March 2003 under the name Sky Bet Vegas. It originally offered three fixed odds-style games: Juicy Jackpot, Top Spin, and Super Keno. SkyVegas now offers its members many different games from which to choose, including slots, instant win games, roulette, and blackjack. The site also offers games through its interactivity facility, the SkyVegas Live channel. This channel broadcasts betting opportunities such as virtual horse and greyhound races.