With the Google app store yet to adopt gambling sites, the popular Betfair app, along with many other prominent online betting brands, have created a backdoor Android app which is usually downloadable from a dedicated page on their website.
Equally, most of them also have a mobile internet site. Domains usually end in a .Mobile or .Mobi extension and allow users to navigate directly through to the betting website platform without the need for an app download or the additional data an app can use up on a device.
While Android apps for betting are far from being an endangered species, the long-term view is that web hosted betting platforms are the way forward.
With the rise and rise of responsive design in the last five years, along with Google’s reluctance to embrace the online gaming and betting industry, the emphasis arguably should be on bookmakers and software providers to work toward matching the functionality achievable via in app, on a mobile site. That is the future, not just within the betting industry but across the Internet. From design to navigation and of course security, “Responsive” is the way forward. Regarding software development within the betting industry, in particular, the open source community. Betfair is leading the way in terms of provisions for high-level exchange players and third party devs.
In 2012, Betfair launched a service named ‘App Cloud’ for developers, in an impressive nod toward the open source community. Betfair already allowed third parties to use its API to place bets, but the developer program was a step in the right direction. The ‘App Cloud’ service allows developers to design and host applications based on those APIs (application programming interfaces) using Betfair’s infrastructure. The ‘App Cloud’ platform includes its project management system, a bug tracking tool, a code hosting service and a comprehensive testing environment.
The Betfair Developer Program is there to help developers integrate Betfair data and betting services into any application they’re working on and on any platform. Betfair has the API’s, data and tools you need to develop rich, customised betting interfaces for your use or to distribute to third-party customers. Betfair, of course, seek to earn a ‘kickback’ from third party clients for the privilege.
The API services come in four forms. The Exchange API, the Games API, the Timeform (partner company who provide industry renowned horse racing date) and the Historical Data Exchange system. For those looking to use the Exchange API for their personal betting, there is a £299 activation fee, which may seem a little steep on the face of it considering the amount of more affordable alternatives, but there is a lot of additional perks of paying the piper, particularly if you’re both a developer and a Betfair, exchange user.