With S 552 up for voting on April 9, one key ingredient is still missing. Will the state see mobile sports betting be part of the offer? There’s no indication of that yet.
Sports Betting in Indiana Will Not Feature Mobile Betting – For Now
The newly introduced sports betting bill, S 552, is making another appearance today, Tuesday, April 9 in the House Ways and Means Committee.
Though the signs look upbeat for the passage of the bill, Senator Jon Ford, the author of the draft legislation, has expressed his disappointment with the removal of the text that would have introduced mobile sports betting options.
According to Sen. Ford, there is still lingering support for the mobile vertical as accessibility should be a centrepiece in any legislation moving forward, he believes.
If No Alternative, Then Offshore Betting
Even today, Indiana residents bet and they do so quite a lot. The only difference is that none of those wagers are regulated as they head directly to offshore operators which are not hindered by law, as they extend their services from jurisdictions beyond the control of state and federal regulators.
Sen. Ford also spoke about the continuous evolution of the industry and how the state would need to move with the times to catch up.
We need to embrace it because all states around us have legislation for sports wagering, and I believe all of them have mobile in them.
He believes that by introducing mobile sports betting, he will effectively be able to claim a slightly larger chunk of the offshore market, although invading it 100% would seem like a tall order. Mobile, nevertheless, is a way to begin this process.
All the Data You Can Get Unofficially
If there has been some notable success, though, it has had largely to do with the fact that a previous provision whereby sports betting businesses would have been required to acquire and provide bettors with official data has been removed, giving some leeway to smaller operators.
Despite this development, Sen. Ford remains a taciturn supporter of the idea. He spoke at ICE North America commenting official data as such:
I’ve not always been a fan of using official league data”, he said. “But after really doing research, I came up with this middle ground where in-play wagering requires official data because I do think integrity is a major issue there.
A Future Full of Success?
Indiana’s sports betting future seems bright. S 552 has already been altered several times with supporters looking into ways to make Indiana more competitive compared to neighboring states. All legislative proceedings must be concluded by April 29 when the state’s normal session concludes.
Sen. Ford does remain confident about S 552 but he realizes that the ball is now in the playfield of the Committee and it is up to them to wave it along or strike it down.
We will find out soon enough.