Washington DC is on the cusp of launching legal and regulated sports wagering.
The DC Lottery has announced that’s its sports betting platform is set to launch in the coming days and begin taking bets in June.
The Lottery initially aimed to launch its sports betting app in time for the 2019 NFL season but due to a lawsuit over the Lottery’s decision to award a no-bid contract to Intralot for sports betting, the city was unable to move forward with sports betting.
The DC Lottery betting app
GambetDC, the DC Lottery’s sports betting app, is set to launch by the end of the month, and begin accepting bets in June, despite the lack of events to bet on due to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the GambetDC site, “the sports betting platform powered by the DC Lottery, is tested and ready to go live.”
In a statement, the DC Office of Lottery and Gaming (OLG) said: “While we recognize there will be a limited number of events to wager on, this ‘soft launch’ will provide us with an opportunity to roll out the GambetDC website to potential players in the District in preparation for the return of sports.”
Residents in DC will able to bet via the GambetDC website on computers and mobile devices, and via native iOS and Android apps that are set to launch in early June.
The OLG said: “A full-scale advertising and marketing campaign promoting GambetDC will launch as soon as there is a more robust schedule of major sporting events.”
Residents aged 18 and over will be permitted to use the sports betting platform. On top of this, users must be physically located in DC as the platform uses geo-location technology to verify the location of its users.
Sports betting in DC
In Early 2019, Washington DC’s mayor signed the proposed sports betting bill into law. Under the district’s sports betting law, bettors will be able to place bets via an online app run by the DC Lottery, at select sporting venues and at licensed bars.
The creation of the DC Lottery’s sports betting app has been surrounded in controversy after the council voted to skip the standard bidding process and grant the district’s sports betting contract to Intralot.
In December 2019, the District of Columbia OLG began accepting sports betting license applications.
In October 2019, William Hill announced a deal with Monumental Sports & Entertainment which will see a William Hill sportsbook constructed inside the Capital One Arena in Washington DC. Sports betting technology supplier Newgioco, is also poised to enter the DC market through a partnership with the sports bar chain, Handle 19.