It seems that there has been a steady rise in online gambling in Canada since it first became available in the 1990s, thanks to a wide variety of reasons – such as the fact that neither federal nor provincial governments spoke out to stop players using online sites, nor prevent the Kahnawake Gaming Commission from issuing licenses to new sites which could be launched from Canada itself.
After that, the provinces started to pay attention to online gambling, and to realise that the fact that Canadians love to play casino slots online meant that they were missing out on potential tax revenue, leading to the decision in 2010 that British Colombia would have their own online gambling site. As a result, the British Colombia Lottery Corporation set up PlayNow Casino and this became a hub for buying lottery tickets, betting on sports, playing poker, and bingo and casino games.
Then it was Quebec who followed in the same year, setting up a Loto Quebec site which offered table games, poker, and sports betting. In 2013, PlayNow Manitoba was then launched, using the same set up as the British Colombia site to capitalise on a formula which was already working. Each of the three provinces now collects revenue and maintains each of their sites separately, except for the poker pools, which are shared. This allows for more games and a larger prize pool for tournaments, making poker better for the online players in general.
Ontario is now expected to be the next province to join this growing trend, with the potential for a new site to launch before the end of the year. This will give the majority of Canadians access to locally regulated gaming online for the first time ever, with Ontario residents to expect lottery tickets and casino style games right away. It is thought that the initial site launch will be limited, with sports betting, poker, and bingo being added later on – though there still seem to be delays to acceptance of online gambling in provinces such as Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Labrador, and Prince Edward Island.