In an increasingly competitive legal U.S. sportsbook market, there is a lot to factor in when it comes to choosing the best sports betting apps. We live in a time where the majority of online access happens through mobile channels, so most sportsbook operators are designing mobile-first and desktop second, for a seamless mobile experience.
Best Online Sports Betting Apps in the U.S.: Quick Ranking And Reviews
Not all brands are created equal, however. There are some major differences between mobile apps in terms of reliability, user experience, responsiveness, quality of services and features offered. In this article, we’ll take a look at the mobile sportsbook apps currently widely available in the growing U.S. market and see how they stack up.
The legal status of online betting in the U.S. has been rapidly evolving on a state-by-state basis ever since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal ban on sports wagering, PASPA, in May 2018. Although there are multiple licensed operators in most states, such as Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, among others, the number of legal sportsbook apps varies widely from state to state, depending on how the state legislature and regulators decided to shape their laws and the rules. While some operate in multiple states, others are limited to one, such as in New Hampshire where only DraftKings operates, for now at least.
Nevertheless, regardless of the states they are active in, the apps are quite different and many of them quite solid. Competition is good for us, the sports betting consumer, so let them push each other to innovate and improve.
In the next section, we’ll go through each of our picks for the best sports betting apps individually, same as we did for a rundown rundown on the best scores and odds apps to download.
As one of the biggest daily fantasy sports providers in the U.S., FanDuel Sportsbook has plenty of experience when it comes to catering to players. The operator also has one of the biggest names in iGaming behind it, having been acquired by Paddy Power Betfair in 2018.
The operator is currently active in New Jersey, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and soon will be in Tennessee. Since their foray into real money sports betting requires a totally different platform, FanDuel offers separate apps for the sportsbook and DFS contests.
The apps are available for both iOS and Android and offer a top-notch user experience. This is reflected in the apps’ reviews, as the iOS app boasts a superior score. Users can access the full extent of the operator’s services through the app. FanDuel also gives you access to their online casino right in the app (in states that offer online casinos).
The sportsbook had some crashing problems early on, but have since changed their gaming provider, and overall, it’s very clean, fast, easily navigable, intuitive, and the pricing and range of betting options are great. Fastest cashouts we’ve seen. Preferences from one guy to the next vary, but at the present time, it’s widely considered one of the best out there, if not the best. At least it tops our list.
First launched in 2017 in Australia, PointsBet Sportsbook has quickly become one of the biggest betting operators Down Under. The sportsbook has since set its sights on U.S. expansion, and made some pretty rapid gains. At the time of writing, the operator is offering its services in New Jersey, Indiana, Illinois and Iowa and will soon(ish) be live in Colorado.
PointsBet apps give you access to over 15 different sports, covering all of the major leagues. It’s fast and clean. The app offers avoids clutter and overall is an excellent user experience with easy access to deposits and withdrawals.
PointsBet also has their own risk-management team and software developers, so often the pricing and odds are different than a number of U.S. sportsbooks using the same supplier — Kambi. So the app has a totally different layout and feel, which makes it unique and a a breath of fresh air. On top of that, they offer “PointsBetting” — a very different kind of betting that’s high upside and high risk, and not currently available anywhere else. Read more about it in our full review.
Users can also expect plenty of promo and bonus offers, many of them creative, and excellent customer service with 24/7 live chat available.
Together with FanDuel, DraftKings Sportsbook stands as one of the leading providers of daily fantasy sports. The operator started offering online sports betting services in New Jersey only three months after PASPA was struck down, in fact it became the first legal mobile betting app outside Nevada.
DraftKings currently offers mobile services in Colorado, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and soon in Tennessee. DraftKings offers apps for both iOS and Android. The apps are very well optimized and easy to navigate. It’s responsive and pretty fast, and another Kambi-powered book, which is both good (huge range of markets) and bad (lacks variety, so-so pricing on non-mainstream sports). The company definitely designed their apps mobile in mind first before the desktop version of the site, which is a bit cluttered.
Users have access to a very wide range of sports from both U.S. and international markets. You’ll also find lots of creative promos at DK. The iOS app is one of the highest-rated sportsbook apps. Ultimately, the app is very solid, but access to customer support could be improved.
FOX Bet is currently active in Colorado, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The operator is the product of the cooperation between two industry giants – The Stars Group (acquired by Flutter) and the FOX Corporation (FOX Sports). The two appear to be a good match as since the sportsbook is one of the best on the market. Note that the starting point for the app is actually BetStars, which was rebranded into a FOX product.
FOX Bet offers a top of the line mobile experience. In addition to intuitive design and access to a variety of sports and markets and live betting menus update rapidly. Pricing is pretty good overall, there’s frequent promos and odds boosts, some pretty crazy prop bets, and not that aesthetics matter too much, but it’s a good looking betting vehicle. On the downside, customer service is between below-average and poor. No live chat and responses to form requests weren’t particularly helpful.
Currently available in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana and Pennsylvania and soon in New Jersey (SugarHouse is re-branding), BetRivers is a product of Rush Street Interactive. The book uses Kambi on the risk-management and supply side, same as DraftKings and 888sport and several others. BetRivers apps have a solid design with intuitive navigation and a polished layout. In fact, it’s much less cluttered than the desktop version, which wastes a ton of real estate on ads and a silly scroll listing wins by other players.
The app is smooth and easy to use. Lots of betting options. Comparable lines to leading operators (ahem, Kambi). While promotions aren’t particularly creative, BetRivers does use the iRush Rewards loyalty program, which is more than many others due. It’s a solid sports betting experience overall, just not terribly different than you’ll see with many of its competitors.
BetMGM has done a pretty good job with its mobile platform since partnering with GVC in a join venture called “Roar Digital.” The brand offers a big variety of betting types including points spread, money-line bets, prop bets, futures, parlay bets and in-play betting. The sign-up bonus is good, we constantly get “Free Bet” offers through its “Money Monday” club and other recurring promotions.
You’ll find almost as many props here as the other top sportsbooks above. All the buttons you’ll want most are at the bottom out of the way — home, bet slip, my bets, menu, a way of saying it’s pretty easy to get around. Biggest complaint is the strange pricing a lot of the time. Instead of -110 on both sides of a spread, we often see oddballs like +110 on the spread for Team A and -134 for Team B. Until BetMGM normalizes and adjusts for -110 both ways (with normal “20 cents” total), we can’t move them higher.
7. William Hill
William Hill is one of the most well-known brands in sports betting, they’re taking over Nevada and becoming available in most legal sports betting states, including Iowa, Indiana, Colorado, New Jersey, and West Virginia. The brand goes way back to 1934 when it was first established by– you guessed it– William Hill. The sportsbook has done a good job of adapting, although the technology is lacking a bit, or feels a bit dated, compared to others. It makes up for this with a large range of prop bets, especially come football season.
Overall, the William Hill mobile experience ticks all the right boxes, and if you prefer a non-cluttered, essentials-only display, that’s what you’ll get. No frills, just betting. Although, the banking options are more limited compared to others (e.g., No PayPal). It’s pretty smooth and simple to deposit and withdraw cash, get in touch with support via live chat and more within the app interface. A couple tangential points: William Hill caters to the recreational better, and is rumored to limit or shut out long-term or big winning bettors. That said, nobody does a brick-and-mortar sportsbook better.
Mobile Sportsbooks Basics
As smartphones have crept up into every avenue of our daily lives, it’s not surprising that many users prefer the convenience of betting on mobile devices (and reading the news on them too, and taking photos, and sleeping with them on a pillow… we digress). So let’s see what exactly mobile sportsbooks are, and what customers can expect while using them.
What is a mobile sportsbook app?
A mobile sportsbook app is an app provided by online sports betting operators to allow for betting on-the-go. The operators usually make their apps available for iOS and Android, the two dominant mobile operating systems.
If you happen to be looking for a good scores and odds app to download, visit here.
What can a user do with/on a mobile sportsbook app?
Ideally, mobile sportsbook apps give users the full range of features they would have accessing the sportsbook desktop. This means that users can sign up for an account, place bets, make a deposit or withdraw funds and participate in promotional offers. If the operators support live streaming, they will usually also provide it through their apps.
How does a mobile sportsbook app differ from a web-based sportsbook?
A mobile sportsbook app is simply another way of accessing a web-based or online sportsbook. Dedicated mobile apps are released for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets as a more convenient way to access the brand’s services on the go — such as at a bar or at a stadium.
Being that they are developed for mobile devices, mobile sportsbooks can offer some advantages. These include notifying users about the latest results and the status of their bets, keeping them up to date with the latest offers and providing easy access to account management and banking.
Online sportsbooks usually have websites that are optimized for easy access through both desktop and mobile browsers. So, ultimately, the way users choose to access a sportsbook’s services comes down to personal preference. You can use the app at the bar, at home, on the can (let’s be honest) or on the commute home from work.
Bonuses on Mobile Sports Betting Apps
To incentivize the download and use of their dedicated mobile apps, it’s common for brands to offer mobile-specific bonuses. These can include free bets, betting insurance, boosted odds, profit boosts, etc.
Users can usually find all available bonuses on the operator’s promotions button or page (or maybe “rewards”). This means that users will have full access to every promotional offer the sportsbook has if they sign up and access the sportsbook on mobile. Read here for more.
How to Download and Install Mobile Sportsbooks
As we have already mentioned, operators usually release sportsbook apps on two major mobile platforms – iOS and Android. Although the actual content of the apps doesn’t differ much between operating systems, the installation procedure is different. This is down to the different policies Apple and Google have towards online betting.
So, let’s go through the necessary procedure for each of the platforms.
Apple has traditionally had a more lax attitude towards online betting and gambling apps on its platform. This is why you can find and download online sportsbook apps just by searching for them in the App Store. Once you download and install the app, you can simply log in with your credentials, or open a new account and start using it.
Alternatively, you can access the operator’s mobile website and follow the link to the operator’s app store page. Before downloading the app, you should make sure that your device meets the app’s minimum system requirements.
Having access to the app directly through the App Store gives iOS users one additional advantage. Namely, users get the chance to post and read the ratings and other users’ experiences.
Android users in the U.S. unfortunately, need to jump through some hoops before they can start betting on mobile. Due to Google’s policies, betting apps are not allowed on Google’s Play Store. This means that users have to download the APK from the operator’s website to install it.
This basically involves installing the app outside the app store. Here is how it usually works.
First, users have to access the sportsbook’s website on their mobile. The operator will usually direct them towards the app’s download page. The users should download the app file from the operator’s website. Once the download is complete, they should open the file. The device will prompt a security warning about installing apps from “unknown sources”.
Users should then go to their phone’s settings to toggle the option which will allow them to install apps from unknown sources. After the setting is enabled, the installation should proceed as normal.
Advantages of Mobile Sportsbook Apps
These are some of the major advantages of using a sportsbook app, as opposed to betting on desktop:
- Accessibility – this is by far one of the main advantages mobile sportsbook apps have over desktop. App users can bet regardless of where they are, as long as they have internet access (or data connection).
- Convenience – apps give users around the clock insight into their account and allow them to make changes, place bets and tune into live streams at all times.
- User experience – being that apps are designed specifically for mobile, users can usually expect an optimized experience customized for their platform.
- Additional perks – finally, as we have already said, operators sometimes aim promotional offers specifically towards mobile users. This can often give mobile users a significant edge over desktop-only users.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you are left with any questions regarding mobile sports betting apps or betting in the U.S. in general, we have prepared this short FAQ section below.
Is sports betting legal in my state?
What sports can I bet on using the app?
What kinds of bets can users make?
U.S. sportsbooks offer a variety of different betting types. Some of the most popular ones include win bets, parlays, over/under, points spreads, prop bets, futures, and in-play bets. The number of betting types offered will largely depend on individual bookmakers. So, make sure to check which betting types a bookmaker offers before deciding to register.
Can I make bets through the app if I’m in another state?
No. In order to make a bet through a sportsbook app, you will need to be located within the state where online betting is regulated. As state laws regarding online betting differ significantly, sportsbook apps must be fitted with geolocation technology. You’ll have to turn on the location feature on your device. Don’t forget that you should also be of legal gambling age — 21 and up in most states.
How will the sportsbook know if I am located within the state?
Your mobile device contains data about your location. Sportsbook apps use the data to track whether you are within the state borders and limit the service accordingly. If you are playing from a PC/laptop, you will have to rely on the GeoComply plugin in your browser.
Can I access the sportsbook if I am located in another state?
You will be able to access the sportsbook app. However, if the state laws forbid online betting, you won’t be allowed to place bets.
Will I need to update the app(s)?
Yes. Operators often issue app updates that contain new features, including bug and security fixes. While some will require you to use the latest version of the app, some will not. However, regardless of whether you are required to, it is always a good idea to keep apps up to date to avoid potential exploits.
Can I make a deposit or withdrawal when using the app?
You most definitely can. Mobile apps will usually give users full control over their account management. This includes banking, i.e. making deposits and withdrawing funds.