- May 02, 2023
Everyone is familiar with the country of India. Everyone knows that before India’s Public Gambling Act, the federal government of India considered gambling in India to be illegal. However, the law did not clearly stipulate whether online gambling was illegal. At the same time, different states may have different regulations and legal interpretations. Therefore, the legal environment for online gaming in India is still unclear, and there may be some legal gray areas.
Now Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister (CM), Shivraj Singh Chouhan, has confirmed that the Madhya Pradesh capital government has decided to pass a new gaming law. Its main provisions will focus on comprehensive regulations applicable to the fight against online gambling. We, TC-GAMING, have also been paying attention to the Indian gaming market. So today, I, the editor of TC-GAMING, will analyze with you: What kind of signal does India promulgate the new gaming law? Is it good or bad for the Indian gaming market?
Situation of Indian Gaming Industry
India is a federal republic consisting of 28 federal states and 8 union territories. Union states are local government units in India with a certain autonomy. Each federal state has its own chief minister and parliament and is responsible for managing the region's executive, legislative, and judicial affairs.
Therefore, the Indian authorities have clarified that gambling is illegal within its borders. But each state has some autonomy. That's why gaming regulations may vary from state to state. As a result, casino-like establishments have always existed in India and are known as gambling clubs or entertainment venues. These establishments usually exist in the form of special licenses, with gambling, poker, etc., as the main form of games.
Hence, the Indian gaming market has always been in a legal gray area. But the gaming market is massive, earning about US$60 billion a year from legal and illegal gambling. Moreover, India is estimated to lose more than US$14 billion on offshore gaming sites.
Indian Sports Betting
Although Indian sports betting is a less legal field, only a few regions and sports are allowed by the government to conduct legal sports betting. But sports betting has become a popular form of entertainment and investment. Even illegal sports betting is very common in India. In 2021, the "Hindustan Times" reported that India's illegal sports betting market could attract US$150 billion a year. A single game of the Indian national cricket team has wagered US$200 million.
•National Lottery in India: The National Lottery in India is run by the Indian Government and is one of the most popular lotteries in India. According to official data, in 2019-2020, India's national lottery sales totaled INR 186.6 billion (about US$2.5 billion).
•Other local lotteries: Besides the national lotteries, Indian states, and territories also have their own lotteries. The types and sales of these lotteries vary from region to region. Among them, Himachal Pradesh, West Bengal, and Kerala are the regions with the highest lottery sales in India.
•Online lottery: With the popularity of the Internet and smartphones, more and more Indians started to buy lottery tickets through online platforms. The online lottery market in India is growing rapidly and is expected to continue growing in the coming years.
Specifically, the report states that India’s online lottery market size will grow from approximately INR 4.2 billion (approximately US$5.8 million) in 2020 to approximately INR 5.3 billion (about US$1.8 billion).
Along with this, the report also pointed out that mobile applications are one of the most important channels in the Indian online lottery market, accounting for more than 70% of the market share. The growth of the online lottery market is mainly driven by youth, as the younger generation prefers to purchase lottery tickets using mobile phone apps.
Some of the more popular types of sports betting in India:
•Cricket Betting: Cricket is one of the most popular sports in India, so cricket betting is also one of the most popular types of betting in India.
•Football Betting: Although football is not as popular as cricket in India, football betting is also one of India's most popular types of betting.
•Tennis Betting: Tennis also has a high popularity and following in India.
•Kabaddi: Considered a traditional Indian sport, and is played throughout the country, both in rural and urban areas.
•Horse racing: A major spectator sport that attracts a significant following of enthusiasts and bettors
Internet in India
At the beginning of 2023, India had 692 million internet users, with an internet penetration rate of 48.7%. The country also has 467 million social media users as of January 2023, accounting for 32.8% of the total population.
Additionally, the country had a total of 1.1 billion active cellular connections, equivalent to 77.0% of the total population at the beginning of 2023. However, according to the data, by the beginning of 2023, 730 million people in India will not use the Internet. They account for 51.3% of the total population.
Internet 2023 Connection Speeds in India
The data we have published from Ookla shows that Internet users in India expect the following Internet connection speeds in early 2023:
•Average mobile internet connection speed over a cellular network: 18.26 Mbps
•Average fixed internet connection speed: 49.09 Mbps
According to Ookla, India's median mobile internet connection speed increased by 3.87 Mbps (+26.9%) in the twelve months to early 2023. Meanwhile, Ookla data shows that fixed internet connection speeds in India increased by 1.69 Mbps (+3.6%) over the same period.
Population of India in 2023
As of January 2023, India's total population is 1.42 billion. Women make up 48.4% of the Indian population, and men make up 51.6%. The population will continually increase by 9.7 million people (+0.7%) between 2022 and 2023. As of early 2023, 36.1% of India's population lives in urban centers, while 63.9% lives in rural areas.
India's population by age
•8.0%: 0 and 4 years old
•13.6%: 5 and 12 years old
•8.8%: 13 and 17 years old
•12.6%: 18 and 24 years old
•16.7%: 25 and 34 years old
•14.3%: 35 and 44 years years old
•11.1%: 45 and 54 years old
•8.0%: 55 and 64 years old
•7.0%: 65 years old and above.
Indian 2023 Social Media Statistics
For gaming platforms, users with social media are the potential target bettors. After all, certain economic sources or regular workers will use social accounts. But there are also individual cases where a single person uses multiple social accounts.
In January 2023, there were 467 million social media users in India. Equivalent to 32.8% of the total population. Women comprise 26.5% of social media users in India, while men comprise 73.5%. At the same time, according to data released by advertising planning tools of major social media platforms, there will be 398 million social media users aged 18 and over in India at the beginning of 2023, equivalent to 40.2% of the total population aged 18 and over.
Indian Urban Per Capita Income
Urban per capita income in India varies across cities and regions. According to 2020 statistics, the wealthiest city in India is Mumbai, with a per capita income of approximately US$23,841, followed by the capital Delhi at US$21,693. These two cities are among India's wealthiest and most developed cities. Other cities such as Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, and Kolkata also have higher per capita incomes. But about 40% of India's urban per capita income is about US$1,000-2,000 US a month.
Based on 2020 statistics, here are the per capita incomes (in USD) of some major cities in India:
It is worth noting that India has serious economic inequality. There is a large income gap between urban and rural areas and income differences between different classes within cities. Therefore, India's urban per capita income data can only be used as a reference.
People living in Indian cities are the main customers of gaming platforms. But, although India has a large population base, India's population advantage could be more outstanding compared to the proportion of urban population and income.
Online Gambling Is Soaring in India
With the popularization of the Internet, the widespread popularity of smartphones, and the convenience of online payment, the Indian online gaming industry has accelerated and is experiencing rapid growth.
As a result, it has a huge potential. More and more Indians are embracing online gambling, especially the young and urbanites. According to some reports, the annual growth rate of the online gambling market in India may be as high as 20% or more. However, the rapid popularity of online gambling has also prompted the current ban on online gambling in India.
India is a multicultural and multi-religious country, and these religions have different attitudes toward gambling. Among them, Hindus generally believe that gambling is immoral behavior. At the same time, India has a long history of gaming culture and history, such as Indian casinos and gambling games that were very famous in the early days.
However, the Indian government also needs to consider its own interests, including preventing its people from getting into financial difficulties due to gambling and avoiding illegal activities such as money laundering. Therefore, banning gambling can be seen as a protective measure. However, banning gambling may also lead to some negative effects, including promoting the development of an illegal betting market, increasing the crime rate in the gaming industry, and causing some consumers to be defrauded and defrauded of their money.
For that reason, the Indian government has adopted a flexible policy allowing states to open gaming operations according to their circumstances. This approach is similar to the pilot city model, allowing individual cities to open gaming operations under specific circumstances to test their feasibility.
However, with the popularization of the Internet, more and more Indians have come into contact with online gambling, which has also accelerated the growth of the Indian online gambling market. As a result, the online gambling market in India has huge potential, and more and more Indians are beginning to accept online gambling, especially young people and urban residents.
Therefore, we boldly guessed that the Indian authorities' approach to online gambling should be essentially the same as that of offline gambling. Thus, the Indian government's online gaming policy is not static but constantly adjusted and improved according to the situation. So, it is foreseeable that the Indian online gaming market will face more changes and challenges in the future.
Another point is sports betting in India. As a country that loves sports, cricket, football, basketball, tennis, etc., are widely followed and enthusiastically sought after. Many Indians pay close attention to sports results and outcomes and bet on them. Especially for some large-scale sports events, such as the Cricket World Cup, Indian Premier League, Premier League, etc., the scale and revenue of underground sports betting activities may be even greater.
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