The Google Playstore has always had strict policies against gambling app and adverts for years. At the moment, only four countries currently host betting apps on Playstore. These countries are the UK, Ireland, France, and Brazil.
However, the company recently announced an update to its policies which will now allow real money betting and gambling apps in 15 new countries. The Google policy also gives room for adverts related to gambling and the apps, and also daily fantasy sports.
The policy will become active on March 1 and this will make it a total of 19 countries where Google allows betting apps. These 15 new countries are Canada, Colombia, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Finland, Sweden, Japan, Mexico, Norway, Spain, Romania, New Zealand, and the United States.
Each of these new countries already has strict regulations to guide gambling within their borders and also to protect punters. They also have a clear definition of which forms of gambling are legal and those illegal. Nevertheless, most of them allow sports betting, online casinos, lotteries, and daily fantasy sports.
The restrictions may seem a bit complicated as they are not the same across all countries. For example, most of the countries only permit lotteries when they are organized by the government. But for a nation like the UK, such a restriction is not in place.
Also in the US, it depends on the policies of each state on lotteries. Thus, any operators planning to release a new betting app will have to understand the legal framework of their targeted area.
What this means for India
It is no longer news that India has one of the fastest-growing gambling markets in the world. A lot of online casinos currently operate in the country and most of them make downloadable apps available.
With India excluded among the list of countries that can have gambling apps on the play store, it would be less easy for punters to find such apps.
Also, the regulation makes PPC (pay per click) a big revenue stream for real money games. In the 19 countries where Google allows gambling ads, operators will be able to attract new punters easily and make more profit.
However, many Indian real money businesses, especially real money casino sites are missing out on this opportunity as Google does not allow PPC ads for real money games in India. Instead, Indian gambling operators will have to rely on traditional ways of attracting players.
Reasons for India and other nations’ exclusion from the list wasn’t expressly stated. However, we could tell that it is because the online gambling market in India is still not regulated.
Many of the allowed countries have well-defined policies that guide online gambling activities, unlike India. The India gambling law does not in any way make provision for online real money gambling or the protection of punters.
How it would work in the allowed countries
As soon as the policy becomes active, developers in the 15 countries can publish their apps for sports betting, online casinos, or daily fantasy on the Google Playstore.
However, Google would not just accept any developer who is from the countries. There are eligibility criteria that must be met. The criteria depend on the country and the particular region where the app will operate in.
Developers will have to go through an application process before they can submit their apps. They must also be registered and recognized by the necessary gambling authority in that state or country. Only then will Google allow them to publish the permitted kinds of gambling apps in their locations.
This new Google policy will be beneficial to punters and app developers. It will allow gambling operators to reach more people easily. Punters who download from the Playstore will use the app confidently, as compared to when they download from illegitimate sources.