Wednesday, January 6, 2016 : SPORTSBET JOINS THE AUSSIE IN-PLAY BETTING TREND (Update)
But hedges its bets with a slightly different approach.
Paddy Power's Australian subsidiary Sportsbet has joined the controversial in-play betting trend, taking a slightly different technological approach to play it safe with the relevant legalization.
Our readers will recall that the 2001 Interactive Gambling Act restricts in-play betting to personal transactions at betting shops or through landline or cell phone lines. Major companies operating in the Aussie market like Ladbrokes, William Hill and Bet365 have been exploiting a workaround on these restrictions by advising punters to leave their device microphones on, thus meeting the law's requirements – a controversial interpretation which has nevertheless been effective so far.
Sportsbet"s new Bet Live app takes a slightly different and arguably safer approach, permitting players to make in-play wagers, but requiring that they first make a call on the public telephone networks.
That's not as complicated as it may sound – the punter merely chooses the bet, clicks a call button and the app connects, enabling gamblers to make the wager via their device keypad.
More clarity on the government's attitude to in-play betting is expected later this (January) month when the public release of the O'Farrell review of the IGA is due, along with the federal government's reaction to its recommendations.
The review received 79 submissions, according to the Department of Social Services, including arguments from domestic giants like CrownBet and Tabcorp…and of course from the above mentioned foreign-owned bookies.