Cantor Gaming, which operates the race and sports books at several upscale Las Vegas properties including the Palazzo and The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, said Wednesday that it has released a sports wagering application for Google's Android operating system.
The approval makes Cantor the second race and sports book operator in Nevada, following American Wagering Inc., to offer mobile sports wagering. Approved by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, Cantor's Android application will work only within Nevada.
"Cantor's primary goal and focus is to constantly enhance our customers' experience through innovative, superior technology," said Lee Amaitis, the Las Vegas-based company's president and CEO.
Amaitis said Cantor had developed an application "that is real-time, convenient and enjoyable, while incorporating the most advanced and reliable security."
The application allows customers to use Cantor's In-Running system, which lets gamblers bet on various situations during a specific sporting event.
Parlays are included on the app, but horse racing is not among the offerings, he said.
"There is a parlay card application, which will probably be coming out pretty soon," Amaitis said.
Amaitis said the applications were available to download on the company's website; however, customers need to have a registered account with Cantor, which can be set up in any of the company's sports books.
So far, the app will operate on five Android devices: Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and HTC EVO View tablets and HTC EVO 2, Google Nexus S 4G and Motorola Photon 4G smartphones, according to a list of approved devices posted on the company's website.
Amaitis said the company was developing an iPhone and iPad sports wagering application.
"We've spent millions and millions of dollars on this stuff," he said. "I don't think anyone can compare to us."
Cantor's Android app was released about a week after American Wagering Inc., which owns Leroy's Horse & Sports Place, announced the launch of its Leroy's app for the iPhone.
American Wagering introduced the industry's first sports wagering application for BlackBerry phones earlier this year. The Las Vegas-based gaming company also offers its Leroy's app for Android phones and tablets.
David G. Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, said Cantor Gaming's entry into the app business gives the company more of a presence for its In-Running wagering system.
"It's also a shot across the bow at William Hill," Schwartz said.
William Hill PLC's $53 million acquisition of American Wagering, Brandywine Bookmaking LLC, which operates Lucky's sports books, and Club Cal Neva Satellite Race and Sports Book division in Northern Nevada, was expected to close in the second quarter of 2012.
In an interview Wednesday, Amaitis described William Hill as an "online betting shop company" and not an investor in casino properties or a builder of sports books.
"Now they might change that policy and say we need to invest in Nevada like Cantor's doing, which would be a great compliment to me," Amaitis said. "But, I'm not sure that at the end of the day the customer that bets in Nevada is going to accept William Hill any differently than they accepted Cantor in the early stages."
He said for any new company in Las Vegas the goal is proving yourself.
"We came in with the same argument," Amaitis said. "We are this giant company that operated out of the United Kingdom and we have all of these financial services in the U.S. All these guys said is, 'We don't care. Prove yourself.' "
Amaitis said Cantor made its a name locally with its race and sports book at the M Resort.
"We went down to ... the middle of the desert and we did $400 million (in handle) and everyone said ... 'He's right.' "
Amaitis expected Cantor's sports wagering handle in 2011 to reach $700 million, with Nevada's reaching $3 billion. In 2010, casinogoers in Nevada wagered more than $2.7 billion on sports, according to Nevada gaming regulators.
"The rise of the state is because of Cantor, not because anyone else is higher," he said. "I think that our 2012 forecast is to be over $1 billion in sports handle based on our current contracts we have in place."
Contact reporter Chris Sieroty at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-477-3893.