Governor J.B. Pritzker was the main actor behind making sports betting legal in Iowa when he signed the SB 690 bill. However, it wasn’t until March 9, 2020, when the first legal wager got placed at Rivers Casino.



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Sports betting in Illinois has since continued to grow at a rapid pace. Although most US states experienced a fast growth of the sports betting industry, the expansion of it in Illinois was rapid, largely due to the timing of the legislature, which happened just in time for the NCAA Tournament; with NCAAB and NCAAF lines available.

The excitement, however, was short-lived since retail locations all needed to shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Because Illinois had not issued any online licenses, bettors had no way of placing wagers on sports, which created a massive roadblock in the expansion of online betting in Illinois.



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Illinois Sports Betting Apps

Although there were plenty of Illinois betting apps for bettors to use, the state’s restrictive registration worked against Illinois’ potential as one of the biggest online sports betting markets. A law that was previously in place required in-person registration for all legal sports betting apps in Illinois, and since most sportsbooks were closed down, bettors could not create an account with one of many online sports betting providers.

That changed on August 21, 2020, when Illinois Governor J. B. Pritzker suspended the in-person registration requirement, allowing everyone to create their account remotely. The in-person requirement got reinstalled on April 4, 2021, forcing bettors to complete the online registration in person at a retail casino.

That’s a rather small roadblock to overcome if you wish to start using Illinois betting apps. With the global health situation slowly stabilizing and casinos re-opening their door, creating an account with one of many legal sports betting apps in Illinois shouldn’t take you more than a few minutes.

But, before you do so, you first need to pick the right mobile betting app for you. There are plenty to choose from, and while it comes down to a personal preference which Illinois sports betting app you will use to place bets, we have gathered a list of three of the most popular apps in the Land of Lincoln, which are:

  • Bovada
  • BetOnline
  • BetUs

While searching for the right sports betting app for you, it’s important to look for an app for the right reasons. We’ll run through all the key qualities of the above sportsbooks below.



The first legal wager in Illinois was placed on March 9, 2020, at Rivers Casino, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the very same casino was the first to launch its Illinois sports betting app. BetRivers got its betting license approved on June 18, 2020, becoming the first betting provider with an Illinois betting app.

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Bovada is an online sport betting app, as a brick-and-mortar sportsbook owned by Rivers Casino. Bovada Sportsbook opened its doors in December 2011 and launched its first mobile sports betting app not long after.

Bovada betting app closely resembles its desktop version, which is always a plus. It’s easy to navigate and find everything you please without much hustle, thanks to its user-friendly design. The Bovada Illinois betting app is available for Android and iOS devices, which differ slightly due to Apples’ requirement for its app to be iOS-native and not only a modified version of websites.

Regardless, even the iOS BetRivers betting app is easy to use as it keeps the simplistic look while offering as many features as possible. To use BetRivers Illinois betting app, you will first need to download the GeoGuard Location Validator app, which is used to verify your location.

Since not all states allow online gambling, using the app to verify your geolocation is required for all legal sports betting apps in Illinois. That extra step might seem troublesome to some, but in truth, it isn’t that difficult, and it’s a relatively small price to pay to use one of the best betting apps in Illinois.

Bovada Illinois betting app provides all of the expected betting options you would expect, as well as some less common bet types. That adds another layer of versatility to one of the best Illinois sports betting apps.

Bovada is a user-friendly sport betting app with a huge range of sports to bet on and diverse markets on offer. There is plenty of incentive to give Bovada ago as one of the best Illinois betting apps.

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BetOnline launched its sportsbook in September 2020 and has since emerged as one of the country’s most popular sports betting providers. BetOnline Sportsbook has had the seen success in New Jersey and Iowa, largely due to its unique points betting system and generous welcome bonuses.

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BetOnline prides itself by offering up a great deal of value in free bets for all new users, which explains why it is one of the most popular legal sports betting apps in Illinois. BetOnline began with online wagering before retail betting when it launched a retail sportsbook.

The app proved to be a massive success in Illinois. But no sports betting app would be as successful as BetOnline without top-of-the-line service, and the BetOnline betting app has precisely that. Its mobile app is stable, fast, and available on both Android and iOS, making it easily accessible to anyone who wants to give it a go.

Like many other legal sports betting apps in Illinois, BetOnline has excellent odds, which is obviously the main thing you should look out for when searching for the right betting provider. Adding to that are generous sign-up bonuses, a modern-looking mobile app, and a unique style of betting.

BetOnline might not be for everyone, but it surely deserves to be viewed as one of the best sports betting apps in Illinois.



BetUS entered the Illinois sports betting market in 1994. It became one of the first betting operators to launch its own Illinois sports betting app, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone to learn BetUS is one of Illinois’s most popular sports betting apps.

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The operator has quickly expanded across the United States to emerge as one of the most prominent sportsbooks, due to its expansion across the online sports betting app market.

If you’re looking for a betting provider with decades of experience in the industry, BetUS is the place to be. Not only does BetUS’s eight decades of expertise introduce a sense of security as a reputable brand, but it also shows it the betting service it provides.

BetUS has an impressive market dept for international events, and competitive odds, as two of the main features that should put BetUS on top of your list as one of the best sportsbooks. Beyond that, BetUS also offers excellent sports betting app that is accessible on both iOS and Android.

Both apps are easily downloadable in the state of Illinois via the App Store and Google Play. Alternatively, you can visit BetUS’s website and download the mobile version of their sportsbook there.

BetUS competes with BetOnline and Bovada as one of the best Illinois sports betting apps, and while there is no easy way of saying which is the best, the best way to find it is to test it out for yourself.


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