Sports betting sites crash during Super Bowl

Guest Post By: Matthew Chaprales, Former Head of Content at PointsBet

“The stress on the platforms is an indication of how big the potential is for sports gambling”  – Union Gaming analyst John DeCree in CNBC on sports betting sites crashing during the Super Bowl. 

Imagine being drowned by a deluge of enticing signup offers and can’t-lose promos from all the major sportsbook operators in advance of the Super Bowl. They’re all vying for your attention and engagement by dangling free money right in front of you. Except when you click “Deposit” and actually go to make a bet, the platform crashes. That’s the reality thousands of bettors had to deal with last weekend, and it’s not the first time something like that has occurred around a high-profile event.

It almost certainly won’t be the last either. That’s because behind all the marketing and ad blitzes being deployed by sportsbooks, many of them are reliant on third-party providers — in some instances the same one — to power their sportsbook technology. And when that back-end tech gets overwhelmed, there’s nothing the consumer-facing operator can do except wait, and hope, the issue gets resolved expeditiously. In the case of Super Bowl LV, it wasn’t, which created a surplus of unhappy campers throughout the entire sports betting ecosystem. Operator executives were angry. External stakeholders were angry. Customers were really angry. 

On the positive side, the outages only underscored the increasing appetite for legal sports betting and the hyper pace at which users are converting to the platforms available in their states. Nevertheless, the whole ordeal served to shine a spotlight on an important topic, namely that what we’re collectively experiencing is as much a technology battle as it is an acquisition and brand battle.

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