Bulgaria is one of the fastest growing online and mobile casino gaming markets in the world. Operators are looking to capitalise on the existing propensity of players to gamble and are willing to go to extraordinary lengths to accommodate players from the country. In effect, while Bulgaria is perhaps not considered to be one of the biggest casino gambling hubs in the world, it has a considerable player base that many operators see as making a lot of sense when it comes to selling their services into the country.
Mobile phone use in Bulgaria is notably high compared to the rest of the world. In total, there is a mobile penetration rate of 141%, where there are more than 10.6 million mobile subscribers compared to a population of 7.3 million people. Such a percentage is up there with some of the most mobile savvy nations in the world and serves as an excellent indicator as to just why Bulgaria is seen as such an appealing market. Mobile casino operators that have already moved in to Bulgaria will no doubt be basing the appeal of the nation on its growth prospects to a certain extent, as smartphone usage is comparatively low. As things currently stand, Bulgaria is not even in the world’s top fifty countries for smartphone usage as a percentage of subscribers, but many industry experts have indicated that they expect the take up to be huge over the coming months, with a forecast smartphone penetration rate of more than 70%. With so many mobile phones in use in Bulgaria, this means a potential market of millions of players – something that even the largest mobile casino operators cannot possibly ignore.
As with many surrounding countries, the actual telecommunications network in Bulgaria is more than robust enough to cope with the projected increase in mobile smartphone subscribers. M-Tel, GLOBUL and Vivacom, the three largest mobile providers in Bulgaria, already offer 3G speeds or better in virtually every part of the country, no matter how remote. This means that even the most demanding mobile casino players are unlikely to experience any disconnections or slowdowns in data transmission wherever they happen to be. Naturally, mobile casino games do not eat up much data, but the small chunks that are required have to be delivered in a timely manner so as not to interrupt the flow of the game itself – after all, no player enjoys watching the reels spin for what feels like an eternity before finally falling into place!
The demand among Bulgarian residents for gambling opportunities is clear for all to see. Even though what international companies would consider as regulated gambling did not take effect until as recently as 1990, it proceeded into quickly becoming one of the most notable industries in the world. As with many countries in the region, the initial growth in the industry took place on the back of sports betting. The first nationwide gambling operation was called Eurofootball and reflected the general Bulgarian passion for the game. Having launched as an unregulated entity in 1990, it was then granted governmental authorisation in 1993 and proceeded to grow faster than virtually any other betting chain in the world – there are now more than eight hundred Eurofootball betting shops across Bulgaria. Even the government itself got in on the act, launching the Sports Totalizator brand which combines sports betting with a lottery.
Such was the success of Eurofootball that it I pretty much the only sports betting company in Bulgaria, something that major operators in the online and mobile casino industry quickly took note of. Bulgarian players are free to place their online wagers wherever they choose to play, and the lack of local competition made the country a perfect choice for international expansion among some well-known names. Indeed, the fact that Bulgaria is part of the European Union means that competition laws dictate that the Bulgarian market will be a valid one for international operators on an on-going basis, and it is well worth accessing the market early before the widespread adoption of smartphones and the latest tablets takes place.
One of the most highly recommended mobile casinos for Bulgarian players and Europeans in general is CasinoEuro Mobile. As the name would suggest, the operator is focused on providing a first class gaming experience to players all over the continent, and Bulgarian players that are happy to play in English and with the Euro as their currency of choice can find the latest and greatest Microgaming mobile casino games.
However, the attractiveness of the Bulgarian gambling market means that residents of the country are actually spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing their mobile casino operator. While many players in the region have to deal with the language barrier, it is actually fairly commonplace for mobile casinos to convert their entire operations, from web content to support, into Bulgarian.
Two excellent examples of this run on the Playtech mobile casino software platform. Both Casino.com Mobile Casino and Bet365 Mobile Casino allow players from Bulgaria not only to sign up, but also to enjoy everything that the respective sites have to offer in their own language.
Bet365 Mobile Casino, Casino.com Mobile Casino and CasinoEuro Mobile are all listed as part of our extensive recommendations as of where to play. They all offer something different to players in Bulgaria, but are equally appealing for safety and security and the quality of both games and support channels. You can find out more information on each of them in our dedicated mobile casino review section.