Pennsylvania Mobile Casinos and Sportsbooks Launch on Apple
iPhone users in Pennsylvania will finally be able to gamble through their phones within state lines.
With the launch of the SugarHouse online casino in Pennsylvania, SugarHouse operators Rush Street Interactive announced that SugarHouse would be the first mobile sportsbook and casino to be available to iPhone and other Apple users.
SugarHouse Launches iPhone Gambling
In Rush Street Interactive’s press releases, President Richard Schwartz announced the launch of mobile betting for both PlaySugarHouse.com and BetRivers.com.
"We are excited to offer Apple users in Pennsylvania a way to enjoy the extremely wide range of pre-game and in-game bets offered on BetRivers.com from their mobile devices. In fact, the BetRivers.com platform is the only one in the state of Pennsylvania that currently enables players to bet from their iPhones and other Apple mobile devices."
“As we launch our casino site today, we are excited to offer Apple users a way to enjoy the innovative experiences we offer by betting from their mobile devices in Pennsylvania. We’re pleased that players with Apple mobile devices will be able to use the mobile web to play with PlaySugarHouse.com.”
Apple and gambling don’t always go together. In early June, Apple announced that all "real money gaming, lottery, or charitable donations" apps were not longer allowed to be written in HTML5. That accounted for most gambling apps, and Apple will be removing all non-compliant apps on Sept. 3.
In response, Rush Street came up with what is essentially a work-around to the problem. By using an Apple-native geofencing app, Rush Street can track locations and prevent outside players from playing. They the information is run through the mobile browser version, eliminating the need for an app.
Rush Street Interactive getting the jump on the Apple market will be a massive boost to revenue in the coming months, with iPhone and Apple making up roughly a third of the entire market of mobile phone users. Any time to get ahead of the market will be advantageous, as was the case with DraftKings sports betting in New Jersey.
It’s likely that Rush Street won’t be alone on Apple platforms for too long. Parx and Hollywood Casino opened the online casino market on Monday, quickly followed by SugarHouse.
>>>Check out the best PA online casinos.
GeoTracking Software Required in Pennsylvania
For the Apple versions of SugarHouse and BetRivers to work, players will have to download the GeoGuard Location Validator from the Apple app store. It runs in the background and ensures that players are within state lines, lest they risk possible Wire Ac-related violations.
The GeoGuard app is highlighted from the PlaySugarHouse.com and BetRivers.com mobile websites, directing players to the Apple app page for it, then back to the browser once GeoGuard is set up.
Through the workaround without using an actual app, Rush Street ensured that it wouldn’t run afoul of the new Apple restrictions on real money gambling apps. Should other casinos be working on Apple-native apps, they might want to consider the Rush Street approach of using the mobile browser site.
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