PlayOLG Still Has Three Promises to Make Good Of
Online gambling in Canada was always a sensitive issue. Although the locals are not explicitly banned from visiting offshore online gambling venues per se, these activities are frowned upon.
Yet they are often forced to commit a deed that's in the "legal gray zone" by the authorities themselves. No international operators are allowed to run online casinos in Canada – the only businesses that are permitted to offer such services are regional lotteries. To this day, only three of them – Loto Quebec, BCLC, and Ontario's own PlayOLG have launched their legal online casinos, and these, too, are a nice bit behind their international competitors when it comes to services. The Ontario Lottery Corporation (OLG) has launched its own local – and most importantly legal – online casino operation in January 2015.
In the two years that have passed ever since it has grown its game library to close to 100 titles, and has successfully implemented a comprehensive – and pretty advantageous – system of bonuses and other player benefits. Its games, provided international developer IGT, cover everything you might find in a real life casino, ranging from table games to lottery machines, and slot machines. The OLG's plans for the future of the portal included the implementation of many other features, sought-after and craved for by the audience. Unfortunately, they are not yet available, which makes the PlayOLG's offshore competitors still a more attractive option for Canadian players.
The spread of smartphones is unstoppable – over 65% of Canadians had a smartphone in their pockets by the end of 2015, and this number has surely grown ever since. Today, mobile is the gaming platform of choice for the majority of players – this is one of the reasons mobile casinos are so popular. OLG has in 2016 announced its plans to release a mobile version – unfortunately, this has not become a reality ever since. This means that players who would like a spin on their favorite slot machine when away from home have no choice but flee to an offshore operator. Online poker is another very popular form of online gambling – and yet another that's not available for Ontario players.
OLG has announced its plans to launch an online poker room – along with a sports betting portal for that matter – at the launch of its PlayOLG portal. Unfortunately, these plans haven't come to fruition ever since.
At the same time, Canadian gambling giant Amaya (its headquarters are in Toronto) continues to provide the rest of the world (not Canadians, though) with legal online poker services… PlayOLG is a laudable initiative to protect Canadian online gamblers from potential fraud and to keep their tax money inside the country. Its mere existence is far from being enough to do that, though – it has to offer a service comparable to the international operators.