Rhode Island Enters the Online Casino Arena

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Rhode Island Rams fans cheer on their team against the Creighton Bluejays. Jamie Squire/Getty Images/AFP.

Rhode Island is now the seventh state to provide online casino gaming! Let’s go through the launch details and see how the landscape looks now for the online sportsbooks industry.

Winning Hands

Bally’s initiated interactive casino games of chance in the Ocean State last week. Last year, the state authorized Bally’s to oversee an exclusive live casino in partnership with Stakelogic, a supplier renowned for its global presence and distinctive array of live dealer games.

“The live gaming product is very exciting.” President of Bally’s Rhode Island Operations Craig Eaton told NBC 10 last week. “Not many states do that at all. So depending on demand we are ready and have room to grow.”

This marks the country’s first expansion and subsequent launch of iGaming since Connecticut achieved this status as the sixth state in October 2021.

Approximately 170 slot games will be accessible in the initial phase of iGaming. Additionally, blackjack and roulette table games will feature live dealers capable of engaging with customers through a chat tool.

“I was proud to sponsor the legislation authorizing iGaming in Rhode Island, and I am excited for its implementation,” Senate President Dominick Ruggerio said in a release. “iGaming will ensure that Rhode Island remains at the forefront of the competitive gaming industry, reinforcing a critical revenue stream for the state while providing an alternative form of entertainment.”

The Rules for Rhode Island Online Casinos

Online gambling in Rhode Island comes with some strings attached. Unlike the brick-and-mortar casino, where you can play at 18, you must be 21 to gamble online. Plus, there are various safeguards in place to help you gamble responsibly.

Customers are allowed to play slots and table games in the state of Rhode Island on a desktop or an iOS app. You can set limits on your time, money and bets, take a break when you need to, or even opt out completely. Despite its small size, Rhode Island is not afraid to explore new opportunities in the gambling industry.

Only four states – Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and West Virginia – have fully competitive multi-operator iGaming markets. Delaware, Connecticut, and Rhode Island restrict iGaming platforms to two or fewer entrants.

Big Money to be Made in Rhode Island

iGaming will contribute nearly $25 million a year in new revenue by next year, according to the Rhode Island Department of Revenue.

Christiansen Capital Advisors put together a forecast to predict how much money online casino gaming would make for the state in the next eight years.

It said that in 2024, the state would get nearly $6 million in taxes from almost $12 million in total earnings. In 2025, the first year with full online gaming, the state would top $28 million in taxes from nearly $57 million in total earnings. By 2032, the total earnings would be $121 million and the taxes would surpass $59 million.

Other States May Follow Rhode Island’s Lead

With the Ocean State being the latest to introduce online casino games, many are wondering how soon before we see others follow suit.

Indiana and Illinois are two states that could benefit from online gaming, but they have not been able to make much progress.

Other states have talked about it and tried to pass laws, but they still hit roadblocks. One problem is that online gaming might take money away from traditional casinos. Another problem is that people might get tired of betting on their phones –also known as “bettors fatigue”– since they can do it in most of the country.

Still, with so much money on the table, the discussion will not wane. It will remain a focus for lawmakers seeking a potential tax revenue boost.