FanDuel is the first to broadcast live games in a sports betting app in the United States

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NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. bookmaker FanDuel has signed an agreement with Swiss firm Sportradar AG to allow sports fans to place bets on a match while they watch it on a mobile app, executives said on Monday. the venture, a first for the fledgling American sport. betting market.

The deal is expected to be officially announced on Tuesday after the service rolled out late last week in New Jersey, where FanDuel, a unit of Irish bookmaker Paddy Power Betfair PLC, has the largest market share of any sportsbook. .

The deal highlights one way the media industry and the sports betting market are colliding, blurring the line for viewers who want to place a bet from their live stream.

Last May, the United States Supreme Court struck down a 1992 federal law that banned sports betting in almost all places. This created a new market overnight, with eight states offering it and more expected.

So far, major US media companies have been cautious, creating programs that include sports betting content such as odds displays – but without offering features that allow viewers to place bets while watching. .

Most American leagues strongly opposed the legalization of sports betting until it became clear that consumer appetite for it had increased and the court was likely to overturn the ban.

“We are trying to create the most engaging and entertaining sports betting experience in the United States,” said Niall Connell, Managing Director of Sports Betting at FanDuel Group.

The service will only be available in New Jersey at this time, but FanDuel said it hopes to bring it to other states as they allow mobile sports betting.

The ability to watch a game and bet on it from a mobile betting app has been around in Europe for some time.

However, American football fans shouldn’t expect to be able to watch the Super Bowl and bet on it in an app anytime soon.

Although the two companies have said they could one day consider this, the media rights of the four major American professional leagues – soccer, baseball, basketball and hockey – are more difficult to maneuver than in Europe.

FanDuel will start with tennis and European football.

A live broadcast on lower-tier non-essential sports should double the number of bets on those sports, Connell said.

And with overseas games, “the ability to watch 24/7 is a key aspect of that,” said Neale Deeley, Sportradar’s vice president of sales.

Viewers will be able to see live odds displayed in one part of the screen, in a section that allows them to place a bet without ever leaving the game’s live stream.

Neither company would disclose the financial terms of the non-exclusive deal.

Reporting by Hilary Russ, editing by Rosalba O’Brien

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