Daily fantasy sports occupies a unique and legally gray area in the US. The majority of states technically haven’t legalized DFS, but they also don’t consider DFS to be a form of gambling. That’s good news for DFS fans – you can enjoy lots of high-quality DFS apps in 49 out of 50 states.
Not sure where to start or which DFS app is right for you? Let’s break down the best daily fantasy sports apps in detail, plus take a closer look at the industry as it stands today.
Top DFS Apps
Almost no matter where you live in the US, you have access to plenty of top DFS apps. These quality apps offer great contests, enticing opening bonuses, and more. Here are some of the best apps to check out and download.
DraftKings is another very high-quality daily fantasy sports site. Offering a two-part opening bonus for new account holders, this large DFS operator is available to most US residents and has both an iOS and Android mobile app.
The app itself is known for its flexibility, responsiveness, and wide range of game formats. Here, you can find big, communal contests, head-to-head contests that pit two different players against one another, and even 50-50 tournaments in which half of the field gets paid no matter what.
DraftKings could also be a particularly nice choice if you wish to enter DFS contests for lesser-known sporting events or leagues, such as golf, soccer, auto racing, and more. Of course, you’ll find a standard spread of US professional sports leagues represented in this app’s DFS offerings. Consider trying DraftKings if you want to always have a ready and willing player pool to participate in contests with you.
FanDuel is one of the best DFS apps in the entire country, offering a two-part opening bonus. This generous DFS provider pays out over $1 billion in prizes each year, and it offers a streamlined and smooth sailing user experience whether you use the browser client or the iOS/Android mobile app.
FanDuel is particularly well known for its new and innovative game formats. While you can find guaranteed prize pool tournaments, you’ll also find head-to-head matches, contests that involve prize multipliers, single-game contests, and even dedicated contest types that are perfect for newcomers to daily fantasy sports overall.
FanDuel makes it particularly easy to get involved with DFS as a beginner thanks to contest entry limits. These prevent you from accidentally wasting too much of your initial gaming cash on a contest you don’t fully understand. Advanced entry features, third-party software blockers, and even late swap contest options keep FanDuel’s action fresh, engaging, and exciting. You may wish to try FanDuel’s mobile DFS app if you want access to some of the largest guaranteed prize pools in the entire industry.
Monkey Knife Fight or MKF is a relatively recent yet still stellar online DFS app. This basic and streamlined app doubles down on prop or proposition betting. In a nutshell, most of the contests on MKF are simplistic prop contests, which are straightforward, easy to grasp, and very quick to resolve. In this way, MKF is a fun and exciting short-term DFS app for those who want to get a payout shortly after sitting down or opening an account.
Finding and sorting through games is fast and easy on Monkey Knife Fight. Plus, MKF has some of the best bonuses available, such as a 100% deposit match bonus of up to $100 for any first-time account holders. MKF is currently trying to draw new players to the app by offering refer-a-friend bonuses. Although Monkey Knife Fight can be fun for new players, it’s a particularly nice choice for experienced DFS fans who know what they want out of an app and who won’t have trouble handling the simple controls.
WinView DFS is another prop-based DFS app; it doesn’t require players to construct teams or draft their own lineups. Instead, each DFS contest is proposition-based, so they will answer potential questions or game outcomes such as whether a team will score, whether a specific player will score a goal, and so on.
Both free and paid contests are available at WinView, making this one of the easiest DFS apps to jump into, even if you don’t have a lot of cash to start with. Contests are separated into beginner, classic, multiplier, head-to-head, and 50-50 contests, so there’s a lot of variety despite the focus on prop betting.
This split “free and paid” model means that you can win real money at WinView; you just have to enter contests that require entry fees. WinView also doubles as a mildly social app by offering social leagues. You can include up to 20 people in a social league, then make up your own contests and share them with your friends or family members. In this way, WinView could be a great long-term DFS app for experienced DFS fans who want something fresh and customizable.
ThriveFantasy is similar to Monkey Knife Fight in that it focuses on props-based DFS contests. It also offers a first deposit match up to $100, which is a great start. Remember, though, that you have to play through that credit four times before you can withdraw winnings.
We like to think of the promo code as an opportunity to test out a few contests with the ThriveFantasy app without having to use your own money.
Overall, we see ThriveFantasy as more of an occasional DFS app to try or a novel experience here and there rather than a staple or long-term app for major DFS enthusiasts.
Also called Yahoo Fantasy, Yahoo!’s DFS app was one of the first to hit the market, although its daily contests are more recent than some of the other apps on this list. This top five DFS app has a very clean and streamlined look for its interface, making it very easy to navigate through and understand even if you are a rookie to daily fantasy sports.
Withdrawals are quick and painless, and Yahoo will even link your current Yahoo account to the DFS app if you have one. On the downside, Yahoo’s DFS app doesn’t have as many DFS contests to pick from compared to the industry leaders described above. In addition, Yahoo! tends to be a little heavy with ads, even though they don’t seem to affect the app’s overall speed or functionality.
On the plus side, winning is even easier compared to other DFS apps since there’s a low rake for DFS players. Fast load times and maximum accessibility make Yahoo! a great tutorial or starter daily fantasy sports app, even if other choices might be better for experienced fans.
DFS App Welcome Bonuses And Promotions
DFS App Welcome Bonus/Promotions Breakdown
FanDuel 2 free contest entries with $10 deposit
DraftKings $20 free play credit with first deposit, 20% deposit match up to $500
Monkey Knife Fight $5 free contest credit with sign up, 100% deposit match bonus up to $100
WinView 200% deposit match up to $200
Yahoo! $10 free entry credits with a deposit of at least $5
Each of the above popular DFS mobile apps comes with at least one opening bonus or promotion for new and experienced players alike. Generally, DFS apps provide opening bonuses to entice new players. They often take the form of at least one of the below categories.
Free Contest Entries/Free Plays
Free contest entries or free play credits are straightforward: they give new account holders the chance to try out a DFS app without having to risk any of their own money. For example, DraftKings offers a $20 free play credit, which can be used on certain contests so you can try out the app without having to make a large deposit.
These are ideal opening bonuses if you aren’t sure whether a DFS app is really worth your time and money but don’t want to spend too much or anything upfront.
Deposit Match Bonuses
Deposit match bonuses are also common. As their name suggests, these apply to the first deposit only for a new account holder. For example, DraftKings’ 20% deposit match applies to the first deposit up to a maximum of $500 bonus site credit.
Say that you deposit $100 to DraftKings. In that case, the DFS operator will give you another $20 of site credit to use with whatever contests you please. Keep in mind the deposit match bonuses oftentimes have expiration dates or play-through requirements, meaning you have to play through the credit at least once (but oftentimes many more times) before you can withdraw the credit as cash.
Refer a Friend Bonuses
Refer a friend bonuses, like those offered by Monkey Knife Fight, reward you for getting your friends to try out a particular DFS app. These bonuses usually give you a certain chunk of free play credits for each person you sign up.
To qualify for these bonuses, the new user has to use a referral code that you give them. Once they do so during registration, you’ll be credited with the refer the friend bonus shortly after.
Plenty of DFS apps also includes ongoing promotions to keep things interesting and to get experienced players to keep using their apps. For example, DFS apps may include:
- Reload bonuses, which apply to each new deposit of funds you make to your account
- Contest bonuses, which may improve the potential payout or rewards for engaging with specific contest categories
- Raffle draws, which you can usually enter by participating in a specific contest at least once
- And more
Be sure to see whether a DFS app has ongoing promotions before signing up. That way, you’ll know whether the app in question is a great choice for long-term entertainment or if it’s just good for a few weeks of contests.
How To Sign Up For DFS Apps
Signing up for DFS apps is quick and easy, as all DFS providers allow you to register for a new account remotely.
- Choose and download the DFS app of your choice
- Once it automatically installs, open the app and click “register” or “sign up” depending on the app
- Provide the app with some key personal information, like your Social Security number and date of birth, so the operator can verify your identity
- Once your account is completed, you can then fund it using several different deposit methods
- Navigate to the DFS contest of your choice and start playing!
What If You Live In A State With Sports Betting?
If you choose an app that also offers legal sports betting, you can usually make one account for both activities. If you already have a sports wagering account with an operator, simply swap to the DFS section of the site and start gaming.
The sign-up process for sports wagering apps is basically the same as the above process.
Payments And Withdrawals At DFS Apps
Most DFS apps will allow you to make deposits and withdrawals using electronic methods like:
- Credit or debit card transfers
- E-wallet transfers using platforms like PayPal or Skrill
- ACH transfers or bank wiring
However, only states with fully legalize daily fantasy sports will let you deposit or withdraw funds at tethered/partnered casinos’ cash cages. Such states may also have additional deposit options using physical terminals, such as PayNearMe terminals at convenience stores or gas stations.
Daily Fantasy Sports: The Basics
What if you’ve never enjoyed daily fantasy sports before or don’t know what DFS entails? In a nutshell, daily fantasy sports is somewhat like traditional or season-long fantasy sports, such as March Madness betting brackets. DFS has players build up teams of athletes from either within or between teams. Then the players use the athletes’ real-world stats and compete against each other either daily or over a season’s course (depending on the contest in question).
Generally, DFS contests emphasize the “daily” aspect of the activity and pit different player-created teams against each other over a few hours or a single day. Daily fantasy sports is fun and exciting because it provides immediate feedback and potential for profit rather than having to wait for a season to play out.
DFS apps now use robust and intuitive interfaces to give players access to tons of different contest types. As for DFS’ legality, it varies depending on your state. Most states, with the exception of Washington state, consider daily fantasy sports to be neither explicitly legal nor illegal. That’s because, from a certain point of view, daily fantasy sports requires a certain amount of skill to be successful consistently. This is contrary to gambling, which primarily relies on luck.
Most states allow you to enjoy daily fantasy sports even if they outlaw sports betting. But many states with legal sports betting, such as Colorado, also have legal and regulated DFS.
Daily Fantasy Sports Contests In The US
Daily fantasy sports apps provide a wide range of different contest types to enjoy; here are some of the most common contest varieties.
50/50 contests are popular DFS contest types that ensure the top half of the “field” (i.e. the player base) gets paid. These communal contests allow more than one person to make a profit compared to head-to-head or single-game contests.
Head-to-head contests are one-on-one contests where you and one other player directly compete against one another. You’ll compare lineups or players and whoever has the highest score at the end of the contest wins the entire prize pool!
Beat the Score Contests
Beat the score contests are on FanDuel. They allow players to make a lineup before a game or match. Then they see if their composed lineup beats a premade total. Players don’t really compete against each other so much as they compete against a shared score potential.
Prop or proposition contests are like prop bets on a sports wagering site. You compete against other players to determine whether a specific match includes a certain event or outcome or whether a particular player does something, like scores a goal or gets red-carded.
Single Game Contests
Single-game contests have DFS players make up a team of athletes, where they then play in real-world matches. Depending on how good the players you choose do across their matches, you may or may not win a single game contest.
Tiers contests don’t have salary caps. With tiers contests, players are grouped via tiers or sections that determine how “valuable” each player is for team compositions. Then contestants make their teams using only a certain number of players from each tier.
DraftKings Vs. FanDuel DFS
Both DraftKings and FanDuel are top-tier DFS apps throughout America. Let’s break down both of the apps with a little more detail so you know which might be best for your preferences.
DraftKings is a joint DFS and sports wagering operator, offering phenomenal daily fantasy sports activities for players across the country. Its iPhone and Android mobile app is very easy to navigate through and comes with many high-quality contest types, ranging from 50-50 tournaments, season-long contests, head-to-head contests, and more.
More importantly, DraftKings’ contests are often bolstered by multipliers, which may incentivize players to try different contests or put together their teams with specific players. Compared to other DFS apps, DraftKings boasts the broadest selection of sports leagues and contest events for its players.
FanDuel is also a popular choice for DFS fans, especially since it includes a wide range of top-tier contest varieties ranging from guaranteed prize pool tournaments to multiplier tournaments and more. However, FanDuel stands out because of its single-game contests and beginner-specific contests, both of which make dipping your toes into daily fantasy sports for the first time quick and easy.
FanDuel’s mobile app is innovative and comes with advanced features, including but not limited to late swap bonuses, advanced entry controls, and even third-party software blockers to ensure the app runs smoothly 24/7. FanDuel DFS has a massive player base and you should never have too much trouble finding other DFS fans to compete against.
What To Look For In The Best DFS Apps
The best DFS apps will usually be characterized by a few shared factors; look for these specifically when deciding whether a DFS app is worth your time and money.
Stellar Contest Options
For starters, top-tier DFS apps should have lots of different contest options for you to check out. These include head-to-head contests, season-long contests, contests with multipliers, and more.
The more varied a DFS app’s contest options, the more ways to play you’ll find that the longer you’ll be able to stick with that app without having to sign up for a new one.
However, you should also target DFS apps with streamlined, easy-to-navigate interfaces. No one wants to get lost trying to find the perfect contest for their gaming enjoyment. Great apps will have simplified interfaces with easy to read text, especially on small mobile devices.
Look for apps that make it easy for you to navigate to different contest categories or to access your account to make deposits or withdrawals.
Lastly, the best DFS apps will also usually include attractive and enticing welcome bonuses or ongoing promotions for long-term players. Opening bonuses give you extra gaming cash or credit right off the bat, while ongoing promotions may make using the same app rewarding over months at a time.
Where You Can Use DFS Apps
DFS is neither legal nor illegal in most US states, though approximately two dozen states have legalized and regulated the activity.
Typically, you can use DFS apps within individual states’ lines. For example, if you download the Colorado version of DraftKings DFS, you can use that I’ve anywhere within Colorado state lines. You usually have to download another state’s version of a DFS app if you cross state lines.
Big states like California, Texas, and New York all allow DFS apps. Only Washington does not allow mobile DFS to any degree.
Best Daily Fantasy Sports Apps FAQs
DFS is currently technically legal in all US states except for Washington. However, it’s only officially legal and regulated in two dozen states, such as Florida, Colorado, and Delaware.
Most DFS apps require you to be 18 years of age or older. Since DFS isn’t technically a form of gambling, you don’t usually need to be 21 or older.
That depends on your preferences and what you’re looking for in a DFS app. Generally, DraftKings and FanDuel are the best and most popular DFS apps for most players.
Yes. Practically all worthwhile DFS apps will be available on both iPhone and Android devices.
Some are, but not most. Most DFS apps require you to make an initial deposit to claim a bonus or enter a contest.
Can I use my sportsbook account to play DFS contests?
Sometimes. DraftKings, for example, does allow sportsbook account holders to play DFS contests in states where sports betting is also legal, like Colorado.