Given The Shared Wallet With NJ And iOS App, FanDuel PA Sportsbook Launch Worth The Wait

While FanDuel made customers wait before they could see the new PA sports betting app, the end result is an unprecedented online betting option.

**This is a developing story and we will update with new information as it comes in

FanDuel Sportsbook at Valley Forge Casino joined the Pennsylvania online sports betting game on Monday. It came almost four hours after their projected launch time which was delayed due to technical difficulties.

FanDuel Sportsbook will conduct a testing period over the course of three days.

  • Monday, July 22nd: 7:30 p.m. – 12 a.m.
  • Tuesday, July 23rd: 2 p.m. – 12 a.m.
  • Wednesday, July 24th: 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Once these three days of supervised testing is completed and receives approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), the app can roll out 24/7 availability.

FanDuel represents the fourth online sportsbook in Pennsylvania. PlaySugarHouse hit the market first at the end of May. Parx and Rivers launched online sports betting at the end of June.

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What we know so far

FanDuel online sportsbook was slated to launch at 4 p.m. on Monday. Initial efforts to login were met with a “website unavailable” message. Technical difficulties pushed the start time to 7:30 p.m.

Around 7:45 p.m. the site launched. However, some users had difficulty accessing the app via iPhone.

No need to download a different app to use the FanDuel online sportsbook in Pennsylvania either. Android and iOS users are prompted to download an upgrade to existing FanDuel apps. From there, the app handles the geolocating.

Users can simply login with their existing credentials to access the site. According to FanDuel support and reports from a few users, you have access to New Jersey funds. Meaning, if you have already deposited on the site in New Jersey, you can bet with that money rather than deposit all over again.

“It was a pleasant surprise,” said one user, who placed a bet on the White Sox vs. Marlins game. “After waiting all day I guess it made it worth it.”

How to login to FanDuel Sportsbook

You must be physically located in Pennsylvania or New Jersey to use the FanDuel sportsbook. You can access it via your browser or app.

The URL for the PA version of FanDuel is pa.sportsbook.fanduel.com.

iOS users can download “FanDuel Sportsbook” at the App Store. Android users can download their phone’s version of the app directly from the FanDuel website.

Login information required

  • Name
  • Username
  • Email
  • Password (must be at least 8 characters and include one letter and one number)
  • Two security questions/answers
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Last 4 digits of SSN
  • You must agree to terms & conditions
  • Allow FanDuel Sportsbook to access your location. You must click “Always Allow” in order to verify your location to permit wagering.

Of course, if you already have an account in New Jersey, as mentioned you can log in using those credentials, then FanDuel will verify you are good to go in the Keystone State.

Current promotion for FanDuel

The FanDuel Sportbook is running a $500 risk free-bet promotion. It applies to New Jersey and Pennsylvania users.

First, players deposit up to $500 in their account. Players need to wager one bet up to that amount. Why is it “no risk?” If your bet loses, FanDuel will put the amount back into your account as bonus money.

The promotion is available without a promo code.

Some small print to note :

    • The promotion runs from  July 22, 2019 to  Dec. 31 2019 11:59 ET.
    • The promotion is only open to individuals who are at least 21 years of age and are physically present in New Jersey or Pennsylvania.
    •  You must have an active FanDuel Sportsbook member account. If you do not agree to BIU’s terms and privacy policy, you cannot create a sportsbook account or participate in this promotion.
    • If your eligible wager wins, you will not receive any promotion bonus.
    • The promotion bonus may only be used for wagering on your sportsbook account.
    • Any unused portion of the promotion bonus will be automatically withdrawn from your sportsbook account seven days after being credited to your sportsbook account.
    • You may withdraw your deposited funds without penalty or play-through requirement at any time.

FanDuel Sportsbook deposit and withdraw methods

Customers have a number of ways to get money online.

  • ACH (eCheck)
  • FanDuel Prepaid card
  • Check
  • Credit or debit card
  • Online bank transfer
  • Wire transfer

According to FanDuel customer support, PayPal and cash at counter are in the works for deposit methods, but neither are available right now.

Withdrawal options:

  • ACH
  • FanDuel Prepaid card
  • Check

FanDuel Sportsbook long list of choices

What can I wager on at the FanDuel Sportsbook:

  • MLB
  • NFL
  • NBA
  • NHL
  • College Football
  • College Basketball
  • Australian Rules
  • Boxing
  • Cricket
  • Cycling
  • Darts
  • Golf
  • MMA
  • Motor Racing
  • Rugby
  • Soccer
  • Tennis

FanDuel also offers:

  • Live betting on games in progress
  • MLB Home Runs: Odds on who will hit a home run during the game.
  • NFL Futures: Pro Football 54 Champions (the Super Bowl), NFL MVP, Conference Champions, Offensive ROY, Defensive ROY, Most passing yards, most rushing yards, winning conference, winning division.

The revenue king of New Jersey crosses the river

Will FanDuel’s success flow across the river?

FanDuel tops New Jersey online sports revenue betting numbers with a year-to-date total of $29,446,758. They account for about half of all of the state’s online sports betting revenue.

As the only online sportsbook in Pennsylvania in operation for a full month, SugarHouse garnered $932,112 in revenue in June.

Online Sports Betting Already Responsible For 40% Of PA Action

June sports betting numbers for Pennsylvania broke the record on several fronts and signals online betting will be big in the Keystone State.

Hot town, summer at the sportsbook.

The temperatures aren’t the only thing that’s sizzling in Pennsylvania.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) reported a record-breaking month for sports betting. The fervor for online betting is real, as more than 40% of the money wagered in the state in June came via sportsbook apps and websites.

The numbers are coming in hot. Especially considering only one online operator was open for the full month.

Sports betting generated $46.3 million in bets in June, shattering the previous best month by more than $10 million. The bets were placed during one of the traditionally slowest sports months of the year, which probably means that the record won’t stand for too long.

Revenue numbers were a bit cooler at $2 million. But don’t take the number too seriously. It only included three days of online betting for Rivers Casino and Parx. It knocks the hold out of whack as unsettled and futures bets meant minimal monthly returns for the two new ventures.

“The amount of wagering we have seen being done is significant. Similar to [what] New Jersey has found right now, online sports wagering is going to be where a larger amount of the handle occurs,” said PGCB Director of Communications Doug Harbach

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Pennsylvania Sports betting revenue and Handle for June

Here’s a look at how every sportsbook performed in June.

Casino or Off-Track Betting FacilityRetail HandleLand-Based
Revenue
Online HandleOnline RevenueTotal HandleTotal Revenue
SugarHouse Casino$5,160,836$467,016$18,170,689$465,096$23,331,525$932,112
Parx Casino$5,175,829$367,206$307,011$18,432$5,482,841$385,638
Rivers Casino$6,203,733$247,309$848,520-$114,395$7,052,253$132,913
South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook$2,462,294$161,00100$2,462,294$161,001
Valley Forge Casino Resort$2,291,020$149,62100$2,291,020$149,621
Harrah’s Philadelphia$2,251,714$135,42100$2,251,714$135,421
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course$2,410,357$83,52000$2,410,357$83,520
Oaks Race and Sportsbook$1,052,241$76,59400$1,052,241$76,594
Statewide Total$27,008,024$1,687,686$19,326,220$369,133$46,334,244$2,056,819

Inside the numbers

PlaySugarhouse.com was the only operator that was open all month. Rivers and Parx for just a couple of days All three were only available on desktop or Android due to the Apple problem.

On July 17, a solution appeared to arrive in the form of GeoGuard Location Validator, an app produced by GeoComply. SugarHouse launched its online casino and iOS users who download the third-part app GeoGuard, are able to play at the online casino, PlaySugarHouse.com, and BetRivers (its sister brand.)

With SugarHouse already leading the pack in terms of revenue, the addition of iOS users should only pad their lead.

Bear in mind that June is an especially quiet month for sports betting. The NBA Finals ended on June 13th. Other events that piqued bettors interest in June were the US Open and MLB action.

How To Install GeoGuard And Start Playing And Betting On Your iPhone In PA

We walk you through exactly how to download the GeoComply GeoGuard app, set it up on your iPhone, and start playing on PA online casinos and sportsbooks like SugarHouse.

Yesterday, the big news was supposed to be the launch of SugarHouse’s online casino on July 17, but SugarHouse’s offerings were underwhelming. It only included 22 titles (though has since added nearly two dozen more). But the real story was the launch of its Apple integration.

In June, Apple updated its App Store Review Guidelines. It required operators to develop a native iOS-based product. Affected apps would be removed from the Apple App Store if they did not come into compliance and new apps could not be added to the store.

Today, it appears the solution for Apple users arrived. The GeoGuard Location Validator, an app produced by GeoComply.

How do you like them apples?

Once verified by the super-quick process, iOS users have access to the browser-based version of the online casino or sportsbook. Users must be physically located in Pennsylvania to play, which is exactly what GeoGuard verifies.

How GeoGuard and SugarHouse work together

SugarHouse finished third in the race to online gaming in Pennsylvania behind Hollywood Casino and Parx. But they were the first to offer iOS users access to their online casino and sportsbook. Sister property BetRivers started offering the technology just hours later. Hopefully, other Pennsylvania online casinos and sportsbooks will follow their lead.

SugarHouse is tapping into a huge market. Apple ranks as the second-most popular mobile operating system with a 47% market share.

There is no iOS app for online casinos or sports betting in Pennsylvania yet. But the third-party app, GeoGuard Location Validator, is a solid solution because all the sportsbooks in New Jersey use the GeoComply technology. This should alleviate any “third-party” download jitters.

How to install Get GeoGuard Location Validator

First, sign off of FaceApp. Do you really want to see what you look like when you are old? Also, its privacy policy is a “convoluted mess.”

Back to the GeoGuard Location Validator. First, go into the App Store. Then type “GeoGuard Location Validator” or “GeoComply” in the search bar.

Click on the “Get” button followed by the “Open” button.

You will see this welcome screen that says,  “Just 2 fast steps and you’re ready to go.”  I was skeptical. Usually, I need to come up with a username, password with symbols and three security questions. Not the case here.

Finally, click “Let’s start!”

If you agree and allow, you can be set up in less than 15 seconds.

Two quick steps to get verified

Step 1

The app asks that you to enable location services on your device to use the GeoGuard Location Validator supported websites. Then it says to click “Always Allow” on the pop-up message.

Click on the “OK, I understand” white-shaded box, which prompts this pop-up.

Click “Always Allow”

Step 2

In order to securely verify your location, the GeoGuard Location Validator needs to send you notifications. You must click “Allow” on the pop-up message to proceed.

Click on the “OK, I understand” white-shaded box which prompts this pop-up.

Click “Allow”

That’s it.

That really is it.

Return to your browser to continue.

How to adjust settings for GeoGuard

You must click “Always Allow.” If you click “Only When Using This App,” it’s not going to work.

If you click “Only when using this app” (which I always do), you need to go settings. There you can change location from “while using” to “always.”

When asked GeoGuard would like to send you notifications, you must say yes. If not, you have to go into settings and move the toggle on “allow notifications.”

What if I don’t download GeoComply and try to play on iOS?

Once logged into PA.PlaySugarHouse.com, there will be a prompt for the GeoGuard.

After it is downloaded, you’ll return to the SugarHouse website. If you’re located inside Pennsylvania’s borders, you’re all set. If you’re not, you’ll get a “geolocation failed” message.” And it’s a bit scary.

Who is GeoComply?

GeoComply provides geolocation compliance technology.  The Vancouver-based company started in 2011, and now serves nearly all of the iGaming market.  GeoComply’s client list includes Rush Street Interactive, which owns SugarHouse and Rivers Casino.

Some other GeoComply clients include:

“Necessity is the mother of invention, and this new launch is a very good example of that,” said GeoComply CEO David Briggs when asked about the new product.

“Since Apple hardened their policy on refusing any iGaming Apps with wrapped HTML 5 code in, our team has been working extremely hard over the last few months, along with Rush Street Interactive, in order to find a way to service iOS users while meeting the high regulatory standards demanded in States such as Pennsylvania. Although there is more to come from us in terms of further features and innovations in order to make the product easier to use from a UX perspective, we are glad to get something out there for patrons on iOS devices.”

Parx Online Casino And Sportsbook Are One App: What Does That Mean For Parx Customers?

Now that Parx Online Casino and Parx Sportsbook are one in the same, what does that mean for Parx players and the promotions available for each site?

Whether you are playing slots at its just-launched online casino or sports betting, Parx is aiming to make the experience as seamless as possible.

Parx Online Casino and Parx Online Sportsbook are integrated into one website as well as a single Android app. Sportsbook users can use their login credentials for Parx Online Casino.

While the sites are integrated, there are two separate sign-up offers, one for each vertical.

According to Parx customer service, yes, users are eligible to receive both initial promotions for the online casino and the sportsbook.

Testing for Parx’s online casino concludes on Tuesday. If the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) gives its approval, it’s ready for 24/7 action.

Parx and HollywoodCasino.com were the first to launch online gaming in Pennsylvania on July 15. As a heatwave threatens to roast the state, it couldn’t come at a better time. There’s no need to leave the comforts of an air-conditioned home to play. Parx Online Casino and Parx Online Sportsbook are available on desktop and Android app. If you already downloaded the app for sports betting, you’re all set.

There is still no Apple app option yet. Here’s why.

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Parx Online Casino promotion

Parx Online Casino is matching first deposits up to $500 with promo code PARX 500. You can use the bonus funds for online games only. Even if you have already deposited in the sportsbook, the promo code for the casino bonus is still available for one-time use.

Five Benjamins is a hefty match, so be sure to read the fine print. There are big things to know in the tiny print:

  • The bonus comes with a 20x playthrough requirement. A playthrough requirement is a stipulated amount of play a player has to log before any bonus funds are available for withdrawal from their account. It varies from game to game. For slots, it’s a 20x requirement. For roulette, it’s 40x. And for video poker and other table games, the rate is 200x.
  • Bonus rounds on slot games don’t count toward wagering requirements.
  • Promotion expires 30 days from the date of deposit.
  • Restricted bonus funds are only usable for online casino wagering. You cannot use it for sports betting or retail casino play.

Parx Sportsbook promotion

Parx Sportsbook continues to offer $250 risk-free bet with first deposit. Players don’t need a promo code. Players need to deposit at least $10 and place a bet. If that bet loses, Parx refunds it up to $250 with bonus bet money.

Some terms and conditions you should know for Parx Sportsbook:

  • Bonus bet money is only usable on sports bet. You must wager it all at least once before you can withdraw.
  • You must use free bets in full and cannot be divided into multiple bets.
  • Free bet must be used in 10 days from the date it was awarded.

How to link your Xclub account for online play

If you are going to play on-site or at Parx Online Casino, earn points through its Xclub loyalty program. Members receive free slot play, sweepstakes entries, points and other perks.

The Xclub tiers are:

  • Players: 999 credits or less
  • Premium: 1,000 credits
  • Elite: 7,500 credits

To link your Xclub account for online play:

Go to the sign-up page, then click “Link your Xclub account.”

This image will pop up. Fill in the boxes, and you’re good to go.

 

What does online gaming mean for casinos?

Online gambling for Pennsylvania is finally here. A 2017 Pennsylvania law allowed a massive gambling expansion. For a license fee of $10 million, the state’s casino could operate online gambling websites and apps.

PGCB Director of Communication Doug Harbach gave his thoughts on the new age of online gaming for casinos in the Commonwealth.

“Brick-and-mortar casinos are the owners for the online license for sports wagering and casino games. It gives them the opportunity not to lose revenue, but to gain overall revenue. I think it will be a positive.”

Spotlight On PA’s First Online Gambling Site: HollywoodCasino.com

Pennsylvania finally has its first gambling site that offers regulated online slots and table games thanks to the launch of HollywoodCasino.com.

Hollywood sets the trends. From leading ladies and their flawless style to live action reboots, the stars light the screen and the path for what’s next.

Hollywood Casino lives up to its moniker. They have a penchant for setting the trend, plus a fearless fortitude to be first.

In November 2018, they opened Pennsylvania’s first retail sportsbook. Today, they took another giant leap into the next frontier of gaming for Pennsylvania. At 11 a.m., Hollywood Casino launched Pennsylvania’s first online casino.

Penn National Gaming, Hollywood’s parent company, partnered with IGT to roll out the site. HollywoodCasino.com will conduct a soft launch in the next three days.

That appears to be a good thing as the initial launch had some users experienced trouble with registration and connecting with online support.

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Games offered at HollywoodCasino.com

HollywoodCasino.com’s launch featured a heavy emphasis on slots. However, the slot titles do not currently offer any progressive slot jackpots. Here is what included, so far:

  • 40 different slot titles
  • Game King video poker with nine options
  • Baccarat

Noticeably absent from the initial offerings are blackjack, craps and roulette. Expect them to be added in the future but it definitely deflates the first-on-the-scene celebration.

Some slot titles include:

  • Wolf Run
  • Crown of Egypt
  • Siberian Storm
  • Wheel of Fortune: Triple Extreme Play
  • Golden Goddess
  • Cleopatra
  • Da Vinci Diamonds
  • Cats
  • Baywatch

How to sign up for HollywoodCasino.com

Registration for HollywoodCasino.com requires:

  • Username
  • Email
  • Password: Upper and lowercase letters or numbers; no special symbols.
  • Name
  • Birthdate
  • Street address
  • Cellphone number
  • Last four digits of Social Security number

Troubleshooting ID verify

If additional ID verification is needed, here are some things to know. (And, if you are anything like me, it always is. Whoever is out there making the red flags go off on my identification, kindly delete my student loans.)

If the automatic check can’t verify your identity during registration, then Hollywood Casino requires you to submit ID via file upload to confirm your identity and eligibility. To complete this process, you must submit two ID documents.

How to play at HollywoodCasino.com

Things to know to get you started playing at HollywoodCasino.com.

  • You must be at least 21 years old.
  • Your location must be within Pennsylvania borders.
  • You cannot be on any self-exclusion lists.
  • You cannot play online while you’re on the property of any Pennsylvania casino.
  • Location services must be enabled in order to play games for real money on the HollywoodCasino.com app

Users can access their account, make deposits and withdrawal funds while out of state. However, users can’t place any wagers unless they are physically located in the state.

HollywoodCasino.com and responsible gaming

HollywoodCasino.com allows you to set and manage limits on the amount of money you deposit, the amount you wager and the time you spend logged into the site every day.

You can manage limits by logging into the “My Account.” Once you reach any set limit, they prevent you from exceeding it until the time period you selected has expired.

Other options for responsible gaming include a “cool off” period that blocks users from logging in for set time period.

Deposit and withdraw methods for HollywoodCasino.com

 Deposit methods:

  • VIP Preferred: Deposit directly from your checking account.
  • Credit or debit cards
  • HollywoodCasino.com Play+: Prepaid card
  • PayNearMe: A daily max of $500; a monthly max of $10,000.

 Withdraw methods:

  • VIP Preferred: Two to three business days of processing time.
  • HollywoodCasino.com Play+: Funds transfer immediately after a security review.
  • Check: Two to three business days

Get rewarded for online gaming

The new program mychoice is Hollywood Casino’s rewards program. It is free to join and consists of five tiers.

  • Choice: 0-999 points
  • Advantage: 1,000-17,999
  • Preferred: 18,000-49,999
  • Elite: 50,000-199,999
  • Owners’ Club: 200,000 +

Members earn benefits such as free slot play, discounts for dining and accommodations, comps, bonus entries into promotions and exclusive invitations to special events.

Here is how to link your account for online gameplay to earn rewards:

Bonuses

Hollywood Casino will load your account with $25 just for joining. No promo code needed for this bonus.

What happens during an online casino soft launch

Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) Director of Communication Doug Harbach offered some insight on what they look for during the soft launch.

“First, we look that the systems are operating as they were tested earlier during lab work. Then, we look at the functions that ensure money is properly collected and paid out correctly. We monitor if the systems are not in any way going offline. We are always looking at the system itself, visibly that is has the proper markings on the screen for gambling and logo of operator.”

 

Live! Casino Project Won’t Let Traffic Debate Jam Up Their Launch Schedule

The Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia project is five years in the making, but it is finally in the home stretch of getting built and opening its doors.

Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia is coming to life. However, they still do not have final approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB). The long-in-the-making casino has faced a number of hurdles including:

  • An appeal by SugarHouse Casino and three other applicants regarding their licensure.
  • Opposition from African-American community groups due to allegations of racial discrimination at other Cordish-owned properties.
  • A three-year court slog over a state law prohibiting any casino owner from owning more than a one-third interest in another casino within the state.

Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia lived to fight another day by committing to a community benefits agreement promising work to minorities. The court battle ended in October 2017, when the state repealed the casino ownership laws as a part of its new gambling expansion laws.

PGCB held hearing to renew Stadium Casino project license

At the PGCB meeting on July 10, Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia faced another hurdle – the renewal of their Category 2 License.

Despite not opening their doors, or even having doors, the PGCB is required to conduct a license renewal every five years. And, yes, it has been five long winding years since Live! initially received licensure.

The biggest issue surrounding the renewal of the license is possible traffic problems. PGCB and Live! Hotel and Casino Philadelphia reps discussed additional congestion to the area, sporting event and peak casino times, and the possible addition of a freeway ramp.

After a lengthy discussion, PGCB decided to table the renewal of Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia’s license.

“Obviously, there was a lot of new information brought to our attention today. Specifically relating to traffic and the (possible) existence or non-existence of a ramp. Hopefully between now and our next meeting we can fully evaluate the information we’ve been given and come back at our August meeting and be able to rule on the entire matter at that time,” commented PGCB Chairman David M. Barasch.

Live! Hotel and Casino Philadelphia and Philadelphia road woes

Live! Hotel and Casino Philadelphia responded to all the recommendations by PGCB traffic engineering consultant, Orth-Rogers & Associates to Traffic Impact Studies prior to license award. Orth-Rogers concluded that the local road and transit infrastructure are sufficient to handle the proposed uses.

Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia received recognition by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation at a Board suitability hearing that a new I-76 West on-ramp was not on the state Transportation Improvement Program. Moreover, it had not been subject to even a preliminary study.

When the PGCB issued the license in 2017, it defined the ramp condition as studying the ramp.

“In order to comply with the requirement, Stadium Casino, LLC shall, within 10 business days of the execution of these conditions, contact all appropriate authorities…to discuss this requirement and begin the process of implementing same if determined to be feasible by said transportation authorities.”

Reps from Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia explained that city and permits are satisfied. Planned traffic mitigation upgrades includes:

  • Replacement and upgrade of traffic signals at three intersections on Packer Avenue;
  • Installation of new cabling from Broad Street to 7th Street signal to enable communication with Philadelphia Police/Streets Department/PADOT area Traffic Command Center;
  • Agreement that Streets Department/Police Department Stadium Large Event Traffic Plan covers traffic ingress and egress to the casino and hotel property.

However, the City of Philadelphia does not believe the 7th Street site is viable.

“The City also recognizes that the location under discussion by the Gaming Control Board at 7th Street has challenges of its own. The dimensions of the property would require of design waivers from federal standards. That location would also place merging traffic in very proximity to the off-ramp at Broad Street, creating then potential for a dangerous weave condition between merging and exiting traffic on 76.”

A look at Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia

Representatives for Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia displayed renderings of the casino which is being touted as “the first comprehensive gaming, resort, entertainment and sports destination in the United States.”

The $700 million 1.5 million sq. ft. complex is slated to offer:

  • 2200 slot machines
  • 125 live action table games
  • 30 poker tables
  • 4 restaurants
  • A sportsbook

Located in the heart of Philadelphia’s major sports complex, it should come as no surprise that Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia will have sports betting. Reps from Live! said are still considering operators for the sportsbook.

Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia claims to be the largest initial development of any casino in Pennsylvania. The project investment has increased from $450 million to $700 million. Also, to date, $254 million in equity has been invested in license fees, land acquisition, A&E, and construction.

Timeline of Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia

Nov.18, 2014: Award of licensure
Dec. 18, 2014: Appeal of license filed
Oct. 31, 2017: PA Supreme Court Notice of discontinuance of appeal
Nov. 15, 2017: Payment of $50 million slots license fee
Dec. 13, 2017: Issuance of license
Jan. 12, 2018: Zoning and user registration
Jan. 20, 2018: Closing on purchase of 900 Packer Avenue
Jan. 26, 2018: Payment of 40.1 million Category 4 license fee
April 2, 2018: Construction drawing submitted to city
April 3, 2018: Demolition permit issued
June 27, 2018: Payment of 24.75 million table games license fee
Sept. 5, 2018: Arts commission approval
Dec. 2018: Building permit issued
March 2019: Demolition complete
March 2019: Foundations poured
June 2019: Erecting of pre-cast and steel

Parx Promises At Least One Online Casino Launches July 15

Parx Casino is the first property to confirm it will be live and ready to go on the July 15 lauch date with Parx online casino.

Parx is ready to kick its online casino into gear.

At Parx’s online casino, users will be able to play online slots and casino table games for real money.  Pennsylvania’s highest grossing casino is readying for the launch with a countdown clock ticking down the days, hours, minutes and seconds to Monday, July 15 at 2 p.m. ET.

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Consider the countdown them revving their engine in anticipation and joy. July 15 has been a long time coming for Pennsylvania online casinos. At least a couple sites are projected to finally launch more than a year and a half after a law authorizing them passed in the fall of 2017.

Games offered at Parx online Casino

  • Slots – Parx promises hundreds of online slots. An array of classic slots, video slots,  progressive jackpots, bonus rounds, and free spins.
  • Blackjack – A brick-and-mortar favorite from the comfort of your home. Parx says it will offer a variety of online blackjack games.
  • Roulette – All styles of roulette games will be available, but we recommend you stick to single-zero.
  • Video poker – A wide variety of video poker games to try your hand.
  • Live dealer – Players will be able to interact with real dealers in a variety of games that stream directly to your screen in real-time.
  • Craps  – All of craps action, none of the fighting for space at the table.
  • Baccarat – James Bond’s game of choice, now available to everyone

Apple still a potential problem

At Parx’s online casino, players will be able to make wagers from desktop or mobile devices anywhere in Pennsylvania. There was no mention on Parx’s online gaming landing page about whether it would be available on iOS devices. A June policy change on the Apple Store will now affect online gambling as well as sports betting apps.

Apple’s App Store’s recently announced policy states:

“HTML5 games distributed in apps may not provide access to real money gaming, lotteries, or charitable donations, and may not support digital commerce. This functionality is only appropriate for code that’s embedded in the binary and can be reviewed by Apple.”

Hey Siri, what does that mean for PA casino customers hoping to play? Can I play for real money on my iPhone?

She might not give a direct answer, as we don’t know if any casino will be ready for iOS come Monday. She did list an Android app to download. But I will since I’ve bitten by Apple and am poisoned by brand loyalty.

Don’t expect to be gambling on your iPhone next week.

Parx sports betting

Parx  online sportsbook launched at the end of June, four weeks after SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia launched PlaySugarHouse.com Pennsylvania the first legal online/mobile sports betting platform in the state.

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BetRivers Brings Online Betting To Pittsburgh Sports Betting Scene

BetRivers joins its sister site PlaySugarHouse on the PA online betting market after launching its pp on June 25 for two days of testing.

The drip of online sports betting is now starting to flow.

Rivers Casino Pittsburgh launched its online sportsbook, BetRivers, on June 25.

It is the third online sportsbook in Pennsylvania. Parx’s online sports betting platform launched on June 24. PlaySugarHouse.com launched the first app online sports betting market in the state at the end of May.

Hours for the two-day test period for BetRivers are:

  • Tuesday, June 25, from 4 p.m. to midnight
  • Wednesday, June 26, from 2 p.m. to midnight

All bets placed during the test are real-money wagers, with complete features and options available. Pending review and approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), 24/7 online and mobile wagering at BetRivers will start immediately thereafter.

Pittsburgh’s first sportsbook

Western Pennsylvania joins the online sports betting game with BetRivers.  Rivers Casino Pittsburgh is the only casino in the second-largest city in Pennsylvania.

“This summer marks Rivers Casino Pittsburgh’s 10th anniversary,” said Bill Keena, Rivers Casino general manager. “We’re celebrating one decade while planning ahead for the next. Full-service online, mobile and in-casino sportsbooks are where the industry is headed, and thanks to our Team Members, we’re already there.”

Online sports betting might be new to Pennsylvania, but users should get a familiar feeling with BetRivers. Rush Street’s in-house interactive unit oversees both BetRivers and PlaySugarHouse.com. The company works with lines provider Kambi on both books as well.

RSI has generated more than 50% of all retail sports betting in Pennsylvania since the market opened in November.

How to get started with BetRivers.com

Anyone can sign up for a BetRivers account, even if they are not in Pennsylvania. However, users must be physically located in Pennsylvania to wager and at least 21 years old.

Customers can access BetRivers via browser or app without setting up an account. You don’t even have to be in the state of Pennsylvania to view it, so long as you don’t want to deposit or bet.

If you do want to deposit or bet, you will need to set up an account. There is also the option for fast registration using an existing Rush Rewards or Casino4Fun account.

Here is the personal information required. It must be entered as it appears on your government-issued identification:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Last four digits of your Social Security number
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • Address

To access on your desktop, visit pa.betrivers.com.

Android users must also visit the website on their mobile devices and download the app to wager. Apple users can register using their mobile devices but will need to wager via laptop or desktop computer. Betting from iPhones and iPads will hopefully be available soon.

What can I bet on?

How ’bout dem ‘Stillers? They are currently listed +220 to win the Super Bowl. The lines are up for NFL Week 1 and the Steelers are +6 for their matchup against the defending Super Bowl champs New England Patriots.

Think the Pirates can climb out of the basement and make a pennant run? You’d make more than a few “bucs.” The Pirates are +15000 to win the World Series.

BetRivers offers an extensive menu of sports to choose from including:

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Boxing
  • College sports
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Hockey
  • Motorsports
  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • NASCAR
  • UFC or MMA

Current promotions for BetRivers.com customers

New account holders will be able to use the bonus code 250MATCH on their first deposit. The offer is to deposit and receive 100% of up to $250 in bonus money with a 1x wagering requirement.

Some small print on the promo to keep in mind:

  • The minimum deposit for the offer is $10.
  • Bonus money will be credited to the player’s regular bonus bank within 24 hours. All bonus money in the bonus bank always has a 1x wagering requirement.
  • It is up to the player if and when to activate the bonus money and start the playthrough requirement. However, the player needs to activate and play through the bonus money within 30 days after being credited with the bonus money; otherwise, it will expire.

BetRivers Sportsbook deposit and withdrawal methods

Customers have several ways to get money online.

Deposit options include:

  • Online banking (ACH)
  • Credit or debit card
  • SugarHouse Play+ prepaid card
  • Cash at the casino cage
  • Wire transfer

Withdrawal choices include:

  • Online banking
  • Cash at the cage
  • Check by mail
  • Prepaid card

First impressions of BetRivers

The BetRivers app isn’t splashy. But like Ben Roethlisberger in the fourth quarter, it gets the job done. It’s simple and easy to use. The newsfeed that shows screen names of users who win is a common feature of online casino games. It doesn’t add any real value to BetRivers. Except maybe the screen names that exalt Roethlisberger and burn Tom Brady.

Sports betting marries slot play with jackpot parlay. It’s a feature on PlaySugarHouse.com and it carried over to BetRivers. Jackpot parlay is a computer-generated parlay created for a chance to win big.

The bettor can simply hit the “jackpot parlay” button and “place bets.” Or they can select a few criteria.

Consider it a lottery ticket with live action rooting interest included.

“It takes some elements from a slot machine and adds a sports twist to it,” explained Mattias Stetz, chief operating officer of Rush Street Interactive.

“The games are randomly generated, and if you want different games you can click the ‘re-pick’ button, and the randomizers spit out a new selection, very much like spinning a slot machine. You can even hold on to one or two games and re-pick the rest, just like in a video poker game.”

Rivers and Rush Street rules Pennsylvania sports betting

In May, Rivers Casino Pittsburgh earned $641,029 in revenue from sports betting. It’s sister casino SugarHouse led the state in revenue with $711,846. Rivers handle was $7,924,510.

The Rush Street operated PlaySugarHouse.com launched the Commonwealth’s first online sports betting platform, PlaySugarHouse.com.  Across four days, most of it a testing period, it took $573,163 in bets. If SugarHouse were to keep that same level of action across a month, it would have generated more than $4.4 million in online bets.

Parx Launches Its PA Online Sports Betting Product

On Monday, June 24, Parx Casino began testing on its Parx Sportsbook online product at pa.parxcasino.com. It is the second betting app to launch in PA.

Pennsylvania’s highest grossing casino is ready to get into the game of PA online sports betting.

Parx Casino is conducting a soft launch of their online sportsbook. 

Hours for the soft launch for Parx online sports betting are:

  • June 24  – 4:00 p.m. to 12 a.m.
  • June 25 – 2:00 p.m. to 12 a.m.
  • June 26 – 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.

When Parx finishes the testing period, if there are no major issues, the online product will be available 24/7.

PlaySugarHouse.com was the first to offer online sports betting in Pennsylvania when they soft-launched at the end of May. Parx becomes the second. However, soon three will be a crowd. Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh is scheduled to join in on the online sports betting action on Tuesday with the launch of BetRivers testing.

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What to expect from Parx Sportsbook

The birth of an online sportsbook, especially one run by a big daddy like Parx, carries a lot of anticipation. Parx’s website says:

“Your Sports Betting experience is about to get better! The Parx Casino online Sports Betting app is coming soon to PA.”

Users can expect an online experience similar to Parx’s Betslip Builder. As a part of Parx’s retail sportsbook, it allows users to build their betting slip in advance.

When they get to the kiosks or betting counter, they simply scan a QR code to submit and print the ticket. The app is user-friendly, easy to navigate, and is the betting equivalent of placing a mobile order at Starbucks.

Parx sports betting platform is only available on Android devices, Macs, and PCs. They claim it will be available on iOS devices in the near future.

First impressions of Parx Sportsbook

Monday got a jolt of juice. At 4 p.m. Parx soft-launched its online sports betting product.

For some, registration was a bit of a hassle. A customer trying to register and link their account to their XClub card reported difficulty signing up. Live chat online was responsive to questions.

Once “in” the online sportsbook, it immediately calls to mind Parx’s Betslip. The live betting interface, which resembles a game cast interface, is the MVP of this app.

Anyone who is counting down the days to kickoff will love the app. There is an extensive list of futures bets for the upcoming NFL season. Fans of every team can get in on the action by betting “yes” or “no” on if they will make the playoffs. Over/under win totals for each team is also listed.

Responsible gaming

Parx online sportsbook goes way beyond “Gambling problem? Call 1-800-Gambler.” They take real action, an almost parental control-like, approach.

There is a clock on top of the screen which shows the current duration of the session. The app includes a list of options to allow you to keep betting with major controls in place such as:

  • Deposit limits
  • Wager limits
  • Time limits
  • Max bet limits
  • Reality check tool, which notifies you based on how long you are on the app

How to get started with Parx online sportsbook

You must be physically located in Pennsylvania to use the Parx online sportsbook. You can access Parx online sportsbook via your browser or app without setting up an account. You don’t even have to be in the Keystone State to view it, so long as you don’t want to deposit or bet.

If you do want to deposit or bet, you will need to set up an account (which can also be done outside of PA).

There is also the option to link to your XClub account. Here is the personal info required:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Last four of your Social Security number
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • Address

To download to desktop go to pa.parxcasino.com.

The Android download is an easy process when you go to pa.parxcasino.com on your phone’s browser. The option to download on Android will immediately pop up. Once you click that, the app will begin to download on your phone.

Current promotions for Parx Sportsbook customers

All new Parx customers can get $10 free just for signing up. There is no deposit required.

If you are depositing, be sure to take advantage of the deposit bonus promo. Parx is offering a risk-free bet of up to $250 commiserate with your first deposit.

Both of these are available without a promo code.

Some small print to note on both of the promos:

  • It must be used in full and cannot be divided into multiple bets
  • It’s only valid on events with minimum odds greater than -200
  • It must be used in 10 calendar days from the date it was awarded
  • Any unused or remaining free bet amount will be forfeited
  • To be eligible for the $250 risk free offer the player must deposit a minimum of $10

    Parx Sportsbook deposit and withdraw

    Customers have a number of ways to get money online.

    The current deposit options are:

  • Play+ prepaid card
  • ACH/ e-check
  • Bank wire
  • Cash at the Parx cage
  • Check
  • PayNearMe

Withdrawal options:

  • VIP Preferred (ACH/eCheck)
  • Check by mail
  • Cash at the cage
  • Play+

Parx establishes dominance

Parx’s physical location in Bensalem began taking bets in January. A few weeks later, the South Philadelphia Turf Club, located a Carson Wentz Hail Mary from the sports complex, added sports betting to their offerings. Oaks Race & Sportsbook (the turf club formerly known as Valley Forge), received a $500,000 renovation for its March sports betting launch.

Currently, Parx operates three of Pennsylvania’s eight retail sportsbooks.

Chasing a sugar high

At the end of May, SugarHouse launched the Commonwealth’s first online sports betting platform, PlaySugarHouse.com.  Across four days, most of it a testing period, it took $573,163 in bets. If SugarHouse were to keep that same level of action across a month, it would have generated more than $4.4 million in online bets.

In New Jersey, there are 14 online sportsbooks. In May, online operators accounted for more than 80% of the overall handle. At 82.6% of the total handle, May featured the highest percentage of bets made with NJ online sportsbooks.

Just A Few Days Of Online Betting Revenue Has All Of PA Optimistic

PlaySugarHouse.com PA managed to generate more than half a million dollars in bets in just its first four days of launch in the Keystone State.

Sometimes convenience beats user experience.

Pennsylvania’s first sports betting app, PlaySugarHouse.com, was not available to iPhone customers and had limited deposit options. It didn’t seem to bother customers who are accustomed to summoning meals and rides from the palm of their hand. Sugarhouse’s online sportsbook  generated $573,163 in bets in just four days after launching in late May.

“Though a small sample size, it shows that online sports betting should not only draw significant action over digital channels, it could also help grow the state’s retail sportsbooks,” said Jessica Welman, sports betting analyst for PlayPennsylvania.com.

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Numbers snakebitten by Apple

PlaySugarHouse app is still not available in the Apple Store. Developers are working to meet Apple’s new policy change that requires the apps to be written in code native to the iOS system.

Android users can access the app and Mac users are able to use the desktop version of the SugarHouse sportsbook.

“The Apple policy change has not only limited access to SugarHouse Casino’s online product, it has also significantly slowed the launch of other online sports betting products in the state,” said Dustin Gouker, lead analyst for PlayPennsylvania. “The problem appears to be a bigger hurdle for online casinos than online sportsbooks, but no doubt this will slow the progress of both.”

A summer of sportsbook launches? 

PlaySugarHouse.com is currently Pennsylvania’s first and only online sportsbook.  Expect more to follow this summer. In-progress online betting apps include:

  • Parx Casino Sportsbook
  • BetRivers
  • FanDuel at Valley Forge Casino
  • Harrah’s Philadelphia
  • Hollywood Casino at Penn National’s William Hill app
  • Presque Isle Downs’ BetAmerica

No official dates have been announced for official launches. But it’s a safe bet there will be four or five up and running by football season.

Right now, convenience beats user experience. But when there are multiple players in the online game, consumers who get frustrated with a wonky app will have other options.

Limited release, big numbers

One of the golden rules of marketing is to make yourself known. PlaySugarHouse.com did little marketing to promote the launch. They still took in $573,163 in bets across four days. If they kept the same level of action across a month, it would have reaped over $4.4 million in online bets.

May sports betting revenue comes in at $36M

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board released May’s sports betting revenue numbers this week. Pennsylvania’s retail sportsbooks generated $35.9 million in bets and $2.8 million in revenue in May. Compared to April, Pennsylvania’s May handle dipped 2.3% from $36.8 million. Revenue was down 32.2% from $4.2 million.

May’s overall handle for Pennsylvania sports wagering was $35,934,215.  March 2019 marked the highest handle with $44.5 million. It came as a result of the openings of FanDual at Valley Forge and Valley Forge Race and Sportsbook along with March Madness betting.

In May, SugarHouse topped all state’s sportsbooks with $711,845 in revenue followed by  Rivers Casino $641,029, and  Parx $639,922. 

Here is the full list of revenue results:

PropertyHandleGross RevenueTax
Rivers Sportsbook$7,924,510$641,029$230,771
SugarHouse Sportsbook$7,934,839$711,846$256,264
Parx Sportsbook$6,809,662$639,922$230,371
Hollywood Sportsbook$3,816,054$210,637$75,830
FanDuel at Valley Forge$2,739,475$240,766$86,675
Harrah's Philadelphia$2,589,147$138,094$49,714
South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook$2,745,803$168,815$60,773
The Oaks Race and Sportsbook$1,385,725$110,744$39,868
Total$35,934,215$2,861,853$1,030,267