Gambling is a centuries old game. It has existed through times in many forms. Even today millions of people are involved in gambling. Basically the idea of taking risks and making it big has been at the heart of every human being. And this drive and desire has kept gambling alive for thousands of years.
For years Casinos have been the favorite and classy places where people gathered for gambling. Casinos had a glamorous atmosphere where players not only gambled but also had a good time socializing. With times things changed.
The idea of online gambling started in the 90’s. However, it did not become popular until 1994. This was the year when the tiny Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda passed the Free Trade and Processing act. This act was basically legislation for companies that wanted to open casinos. Thus, licenses were allowed to online casinos in the state. Till date this state is the most popular jurisdiction for online gambling licensing.
It seemed as if the world was waiting for this legislation to happen as after that the industry took to boost like a whirlwind. Shortly afterwards, in the same year, “Microgaming” was formed which became the first online software provider for gambling. In 1995, Cryptologic was formed for developing software for facilitating online monetary transactions. Next year marked the opening of the first internet casino, called InterCasino that accepted real money wagering. In 1998, Microgaming launched the first progressive jackpot slot on the internet called Cash Splash.
Meanwhile, the first online sportsbook, Intertop was launched on the internet in the year 1996. Another big boost to the industry came in the year 1999 with the introduction of the new gaming software that offered multi-player function. This added to the immense interest of the game. During this time online poker was also introduced through Planet Poker. Launched in late 90’s, it was the very first site to offer multi-player online poker games.
Internet Gambling was warmly welcomed in the United States. Over the next few years, a steady growth was witnessed in the online gambling industry with plenty of online casinos and sportsbooks being introduced. Same was the case with gaming software programs as well as the payment mechanisms.
The new millennium witnessed immense progress in the online casinos. Casino licenses were offered by Isle of Man and companies like Cryptologic started trading on NASDAQ, which was certainly a big leap for the company. The dawn of the millennium also witnessed the launch of Party Poker that quickly became the largest online poker room of the world.
During the same time period serious legislations were passed by different states that restricted the online gambling scene. However, that neither stopped the casinos from their operations nor damaged the enthusiasm of the players. The major players of this industry are listed on stock exchanges. So in reality no real laws are there to stop them. In fact most countries are thinking of regularizing this industry so that users and the government both can get benefits.