Ohio is poised to become the last state lottery to offer online and mobile games.
Ohio_lotteryOhio Lottery officials hope to launch what they call an “iLottery,” a platform of desktop and mobile applications for certain existing lottery games, within the next year.
Currently, eight states offer online lottery products, officials said, including the neighboring states of Kentucky, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Enabling other methods of purchasing existing lottery, the lottery can track how people got used to buying everything from music and books to food,” said Pat McDonald, director of Ohio lottery, to state legislators, in Columbus earlier this week in the House of Representatives.
Lottery managers are still working on the details of their proposal and plan to solicit proposals for companies that will help them develop, launch and maintain their online platform in the near future.
MegaMillionsFor comparison, the Michigan lottery went online in 2020 and now offers Instant Keno, Powerball , Mega Millions and other games. Play here 먹튀
Ohio lottery officials hope to increase profits of $ 100 million a year, which in Ohio is used to fund kindergarten to grade 12 education after the program has been in place for five years , using Michigan for comparison. But lottery officials estimate that it will make closer to $ 45 million in its early years.
Lottery managers believe they can make more money by giving people more opportunities to play and by appealing to a different, younger client.
But lottery retailers are concerned that the movement of the state lottery to online gaming may reduce their visitor traffic.
“There are certainly concerns about switching to a mobile app,” said Alex Boehnke, lobbyist for the Ohio Council of Retail Merchants, which represents grocery stores in Ohio. “But we will really have to delve into the details of any proposal before taking a stand.”
Lottery officials say their research shows that in other states, online games are expanding the lottery market by attracting younger customers. McDonald said in an interview that the state plans to include cross promotions through their app, such as offering coupons or other incentives to entice online players to buy physical lottery tickets.
OHLottery logoFrom 2016 to 2018, annual profits from state lotteries – primarily sales of traditional lotteries and some state video slot machine revenue – averaged $ 1.06 billion, the state having reached the record figure of 1,087.7 billion in 2018. Sales of traditional lotteries were about four times higher.
During the committee hearing earlier this week, state representative Erica Crawley, a Columbus Democrat, asked McDonald what protective measures the lottery will have to protect people addicted to gambling.
McDonald responded that online offers allow lottery managers to have greater control when it comes to controlling gambling behavior, by controlling how many people can pass or by imposing time limits.
And that tackles another potential source of opposition – religious groups and others who are concerned about the impact of the lottery on the poor and other vulnerable groups. State lottery data consistently shows that the highest lottery sales tend to occur in some of the poorest regions of the state.
Aaron Baer, president of Citizens for Community Values, a conservative Christian group, said his organization is opposed to any expansion of the lottery. Under state proposals, the CCV and other groups could take legal action, since the Ohio Constitution strictly regulates gambling.
“Cultivating the lottery in any form is bad policy for the state of Ohio,” said Baer. “It is a regressive tax in its truest form. There are plenty of other ways to finance education without exploiting impoverished people. ”
Even though Ohio doesn’t have official online offers, that hasn’t stopped other companies from trying to fill the void. An app called JackPocket, which takes orders for physical lottery tickets and delivers all winnings to players, said last year that it planned to attempt to launch in Ohio in 2019, but it did not. still done.
In another development in the increasingly crowded online gaming space, state lawmakers recently unveiled a proposal to regulate online sports betting in Ohio, following a decision by the 2018 U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled this practice legal.