Delaware To Celebrate Halloween With Online Gambling Launch

Delaware has joined New Jersey and Nevada in passing legislation legalizing online gambling. Nevada has already launched two state approved Internet poker sites, and New Jersey plans to swing wide the virtual doors of its Internet casino operation in a few weeks. Delaware appears to be ready to join Nevada, as only the second state to deliver legalized Internet gambling in the United States, aiming for a haunting October 31 as its launch date. So it appears that this Halloween will deliver tricks and treats to online casino-loving Delaware adults as well as costume wearing children.

The Delaware legislation requires that the Delaware lottery handle all Internet gambling, and lottery director Vernon Kirk recently revealed in an interview with Cardplayer magazine that the entire slate of Internet casino games may not be ready for the Halloween launch. He also went on to state that online poker will definitely be available, and that the reason Delaware is rolling out an incomplete set of Internet gambling options is to beat New Jersey to the punch. New Jersey has decided on a November 26 launch date, with a November 21 limited soft launch which can be participated in by invitation only.

Kirk went on to state that it may "still be a while" before the full Slate of Internet casino games is offered to Delaware residents and travelers. So Delaware will effectively beat nearby New Jersey in officially delivering Internet gambling options by nearly 4 weeks. Delaware officials said they believed it is important for their state to get up and running with some type of online gambling presence as quickly as possible due to the fact that they have only 900,000 residents. This is probably another reason why New Jersey and Nevada Internet gambling news has been reported more heavily than updates on the First State's progress in that regard.

Delaware has already launched free play online gambling, when back in August they rolled out the free option so that Delawareans could familiarize themselves with the user interface, game play and other aspects their site would deliver. Kirk mentioned that the free play online gambling options have "attracted a lot of interest" from residents and travelers to the state, but stopped short of announcing a player pool figure. And once a significant database of possible real money players has been developed, this could prove attractive to Nevada and New Jersey when those states began entering interstate online gambling compacts.

On that front, it appears that Nevada has been aggressively discussing player pool sharing with Delaware. This would benefit both states, as Nevada only has a population of 2.7 million. These two smaller states could definitely help each other out by sharing their player pools, especially in the face of New Jersey having a population of 8.8 million. Until states like California and Pennsylvania jump on board the online gambling bandwagon (both states are aggressively seeking to legalize online gambling), New Jersey will be the biggest fish in a small Internet gambling pond. Kudos to Delaware for getting their Internet gambling casinos up and running before the Garden State.

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