Delaware has begun testing ahead of the launch of the first full online casino in the US on November 8th. The state has jumped ahead of New Jersey in the race to become the first state with a legal online casino in America, after their online slots became available following the ironing out of software problems with provider 888 Holdings.
The test period has attracted between 25 and 75 players, who will test out the new websites – maintained by the state’s three racetrack casinos – throughout the next week. Officials are hoping that any potential hiccups can then be fixed before the sites go live next week. The launch will see players able to participate in blackjack, poker, roulette and slot games.
The moves will see Delaware become the first state to take full advantage of the changes in American gambling laws that made online gaming legal, and officials are promoting the services as the first “full suite” of legal games throughout the US.
The launch will allow Delaware residents access to all forms of online gambling, while mobile casinos are sure to follow shortly. However, casinos see the move as more of a marketing tool than a real money making exercise.
Indeed, all three US states to have legalized online gambling so far have taken a different track. While Delaware sees the market as a marketing tool, New Jersey is hoping to cash in as Atlantic City casino revenues continue to drop. Meanwhile, Nevada has launched a spate of poker rooms, but has failed to pass the relevant legislation to allow online casinos.
Delaware finance secretary Thomas Cook said of the move: “This is another chapter in Delaware’s history of staying competitive in the gaming industry. It is something that has to grow but we’re in a fiercely competitive environment here. This is just one more opportunity for entertainment.”