On Monday, November 1st the Seminole Tribe launched its mobile sports betting app in Florida, making online sports betting accessible and more widespread in The Sunshine State. The Seminole Tribe partnered with Hard Rock to release their Hard Rock Sportsbook app, allowing anyone who is at least 18 years old with a smartphone or smart device to sign up, deposit, and place wagers on football, basketball, hockey, soccer, and more.
First In Florida: Hard Rock Sportsbook App
The Hard Rock Sportsbook is the first to launch a Florida sports betting app but if you’re familiar with online sportsbooks, you won’t notice too many differences between the Hard Rock’s app and other major competitors such as BetMGM, FanDuel, or DraftKings.
If you are located within the state’s boundaries and are 18 or older, then you’re eligible to sign up on the Hard Rock app. Furthermore, the Hard Rock has launched a new player bonus to help attract new patrons — sign up today and get a $100 risk-free bet courtesy of the sportsbook.
The Hard Rock app includes payout boosts, bonuses, parlays, prop bets, and much more. It is available on both iOS and Android devices.
The State of Sports Betting in Florida
The launch of the Hard Rock app arguably slipped under the radar. In fact, representatives of the Seminole Tribe declined to comment about the launch.
But nevertheless, Monday, 11/1 is an historic day for sports betting in Florida as it is now live in the state despite ongoing litigation in Federal Court, where Governor DeSantis’ May legislation legalizing sports betting is being challenged.
As per the May compact, tribal casinos are aiming to have a big hand in the future of sports betting in Florida as all online sports bets will be facilitated via servers controlled by tribal casinos
However, it does come at a cost as The Seminole Tribe is expected to have to pay billions to the state in return for sports betting and other benefits, such as being able to offer craps and roulette at tribal casinos.
The May deal also requires the Seminole Tribe to partner with pari-mutuels and provide them with 60% of the profits. To date, the tribe announced the following partners as part of their shortlist: Palm Beach Kennel Club, Hialeah Park Casino, Ocala Gainesville Poker and Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co., Tampa Bay Downs, and TGT Poker & Racebook in Tampa.
Despite the launch of the Hard Rock sportsbook app and the tribe’s first payment of $37 million dollars to the state of Florida, parts of the May deal still may be changed if a federal judge sides with the Florida pari-mutuel owners challenging parts of the May compact.
Additionally, in an attempt at diversifying the Florida sports betting market, DraftKings and FanDuel have financially supported an initiative to legalize sports betting at professional sports arenas, pari-mutuel properties, and other online platforms.
Their proposal would be on the November 2022 election ballot if it can collect enough signatures and get Florida Supreme Court approval of the wording. Until then, the Seminole Tribe and their Hard Rock app will be one of, if not the, primary option for sports bettors in Florida.