Best Sports Betting Apps in Illinois
Illinois is still young in sports betting. In 2019, the Illinois Legislature passed a law legalizing sports betting. The first legal sports bet in Illinois was placed on March 9, 2020. Then later that summer, online sportsbooks went live as well. You can currently place wagers on all major professional sports either in person or via web or mobile.
While sports betting is off to a great start in Illinois, the state is still limited as it does not allow any form of betting on college games involving teams based in the state. You also cannot wager on any amateur sports or K-12 sporting events.
Top betting apps in Illinois for 2021
Now that sports betting is legal in Illinois, let’s look at all the sportsbooks available in the Prairie State and those that are on the way.
DraftKings Sportsbook app
DraftKings is one of the country’s top sportsbooks, and it launched its app in Illinois in August 2020. DraftKings partnered with Casino Queen for the launch of its online sportsbook and app in the state. The platform’s actual official name is DraftKings at Casino Queen Sportsbook.
DraftKings Sportsbook offers users a simple platform that is easy to navigate. If you have any trouble with the app, DraftKings offers 24/7 customer support and a live chat feature. DraftKings also provides excellent security and many banking options for quick payouts. It offers fair betting markets and bonuses for new and existing users. One of DraftKings’ best aspects is that it makes sports betting easy by providing guides to outline the basics. Finally, DraftKings provides excellent blog posts with some solid analysis of upcoming games.
If you are looking for a dependable, secure sportsbook that offers live betting and has a simple app, you can’t go wrong with DraftKings.
FanDuel Sportsbook app
FanDuel, another top sportsbook in the nation, also launched its app in Illinois in August 2020. FanDuel was able to begin operating in the state via a partnership with Par-A-Dice Casino.
The FanDuel Sportsbook is best known for its competitive odds across all sports markets, as well as its promotional features, such as odds boosts. Odd boosts allow users to get far better odds than normal on certain games. FanDuel also makes sports betting for beginners simple with betting guides posted to its site. What’s even better is it offers a risk-free bet of up to $1,000 to new users.
FanDuel runs a blog called The Duel, with expert analysis on games that can be helpful no matter the experience level. FanDuel also has a smooth, simple app, a solid live betting offering and 24/7 customer service. It uses safe and secure payment/cash-out methods and offers various banking options for players. Finally, FanDuel provides some of the best bonuses and promotions you can find on sportsbooks. It also prides itself on having a variety of prop bets on all games.
PointsBet Sportsbook app
PointsBet launched its popular online sportsbook in Illinois in September 2020 after partnering with Hawthorne Race Course. PointsBet is one of the fastest growing online sportsbooks globally because of its many features. For one, all PointsBet’s technology is designed in-house. This also helps it maintain a top-notch security system and provide one of the cleanest and easiest-to-use sports betting apps for real money. It also provides reliable customer service 24/7.
PointsBet Sportsbook has gained traction for its celebrity endorsers like Allen Iverson. It has also gained popularity for PointsBetting, a feature unique to the sportsbook. PointsBetting boils down to the following philosophy: The more your bet covers by, the more you win, but the more your bet falls short, the more you lose. PointsBet offers many promos and bonuses and has a large library of guides that explain sports betting for beginners. It also provides everything other sportsbooks offer, like live betting, prop bets and early cash-outs.
William Hill Sportsbook app
William Hill is one of the oldest and most respected sportsbooks in the world. The Britain-based company has been operating in the US since 2012. After partnering with Grand Victoria Casino, William Hill launched its online sportsbook in Illinois in September 2020. William Hill has all the basics a user could want in an online sportsbook. It offers a variety of bets with competitive odds across all major sports. It also provides reliable, 24/7 customer service, secure transactions and a variety of banking options.
William Hill’s app is as smooth and reliable as its competition, along with being easy to navigate. Like the other sportsbooks, it also offers many great bonuses and promotions.
What sets William Hill apart from its competition is its soccer market. Being a Europe-based sportsbook, it has the largest soccer market available in Illinois.
BetRivers Sportsbook app
BetRivers was the first retail and online sportsbook available in Illinois. After partnering with Rivers Casino Des Plaines, it launched its online sportsbook in July 2020. Being the first online sportsbook to open in Illinois has given BetRivers an early jump on the competition. BetRivers offers smooth and easy navigation of its app while also providing excellent security. It also has a large selection of banking methods and has 24/7 customer service with a live chat feature. On top of that, BetRivers has an extensive FAQ section to answer your questions.
BetRivers Sportsbook offers all the basics of a sportsbook. It has large markets, competitive odds, great bonuses, promos and live betting, all on a reliable platform. It also has an excellent VIP program — iRush Rewards. The more you use the sportsbook, the more benefits you receive.
Potential new sportsbooks coming to IL
While some top sports betting apps are already in Illinois, the industry is still young and likely will continue to expand. Here are some possibilities to join the sportsbooks listed above:
- Barstool Sportsbook
- BetMGM Sportsbook
- Caesars Sportsbook
- FOX Bet Sportsbook
How mobile sports betting works
Placing sports bets is becoming increasingly convenient. You used to have to drive to a retail sportsbook to place a legal sports bet. Then sportsbooks began developing online sites, which allowed you to place a bet from anywhere as long as you were in a state where it was legal. While these sites were more convenient than driving, they were meant for desktop computers.
Now all the top sportsbooks have apps designed to make sports betting on your phone and tablet quick and straightforward. Much goes into mobile sports betting, though, so we will outline exactly how it all works.
Geolocation is how your phone knows exactly where you are by collecting data from your GPS on your device and your cellular networks. It also is essential for sportsbook apps as it ensures that only legal bets are placed through sportsbooks, something the law requires of them. So, while it may sometimes be a pain, it is a technology helping to legalize sports betting in states around the country.
It is important to note that geolocation tracks where you are whenever you place a bet. So, if you turn off your geolocation services, you won’t be able to place wagers. The same is true if you are outside Illinois when you try to place a wager.
How to download/install sportsbook apps
Downloading/installing sportsbook apps on your iOS or Android device is easy. It takes only a few moments, and anyone with cell service or an internet connection can download the apps.
To begin the download process, use your mobile device’s browser to head to the sportsbook site for the app you want to get. Once there, click on the appropriate link for your operating system and follow the prompts from there to get the app on your device.
Benefits of mobile sports betting
Mobile betting is becoming the most popular way to place sports bets. There are many reasons for this, but here are some of the top perks of betting on sports via an app:
- Convenience: Plain and simple, mobile sports betting is the most convenient way to place sports bets. Users no longer have to drive to a sportsbook or be at their computer to place a wager. With sportsbook apps, you can make all your bets from your phone or tablet.
- Free money: Online sportsbooks offer bonuses and promos for users that you would never find at a physical sportsbook. These are not just one-off first-time user things, either. Sportsbook apps are always running promotions and bonus opportunities. Wouldn’t you rather bet with free money than your own?
- Fast deposits/withdrawals: Online sportsbooks have revolutionized the way you deposit and withdraw your gambling money. You no longer need to pull out cash at an ATM, hand it over, and then go back to the same location to collect your winnings. Now you can deposit and withdraw money from sportsbooks by transferring it to or from your bank account.
- Live betting: This is a big one. Live betting is not new to sports betting, but apps have revolutionized the way it works. You now can place live bets from anywhere at any time during a game. This means you can watch games at home and still get all the benefits of live betting. We will break down live betting more in the next section.
Live in-play betting on sports
This can be one of the most exciting ways to bet on sports. Instead of reading analytics and trying to decide on what bets to make before the game, live betting lets you make choices as the game unfolds.
Live betting on apps is easy, as every app that offers live betting will have a section for it. All you do is click on this section in your preferred app, and you will see all the games available for live bets. Sportsbooks update the odds as the game unfolds and allow users to make bets while the game is still being played.
If you’re the type who prefers to make decisions based on what you see with your own eyes, then live betting might be for you. Not to mention you can cash in on some great odds depending on how a game unfolds.
Mobile Betting FAQ
Yes. Mobile sports betting became legal in Illinois in 2019.
BetRivers was the first app to go live in Illinois on June 18, 2020.
In Illinois, you can bet on all major sports, international sports and some less popular sports. While it is legal to gamble on college sports in Illinois, you cannot bet on any schools that are based in the state.
No. To place a wager with a sportsbook registered in Illinois, you must be in Illinois. The sportsbooks will verify this using geolocation.