Best Online Sports Betting Apps In The US 2021

Legal online sports betting appeals to a wide swath of people in the United States who enjoy watching sports and wagering on potential winners. Instead of driving to a physical casino, Americans in many states can now sit on their couch and bet from the comfort of their laptop, tablet, or smartphone on the best online sports betting apps in the US.

Online sports betting is legal on a state-by-state basis. The first states to legalize online sports betting were New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Today, at least a dozen states offer legal online sportsbooks. There are several more that are in the process of rolling out this type of wagering. Clearly, there is a real desire for online sports betting, and additional states will likely follow soon.

What might be surprising is how diverse the people are who use online sportsbooks today. Since you can place bets from your home, the local sports bar, or anywhere else you happen to be, people from all backgrounds participate in online sports betting. It makes an excellent alternative for those who are nowhere near or cannot access a physical sportsbook.

8 Best Legal US Online Sports Betting Apps

Best Real Money Online Sportsbooks For 2021

Best Mobile App

on DraftKings Sportsbook Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted CO, IL, IN, IA, MI, NH, NJ, PA, TN, VA, WV, WY

Best Mobile App

DraftKings Sportsbook

Free Bet For

$50

with $5 deposit

Deposit Offer

20% up to $1,000 on Deposit

DraftKings Sportsbook has one of the best reputations in the industry. They offer a top-notch user experience for both new players and experienced bettors. They offer a good sign up bonus offer and frequent promotions and odds boosters.

Best For MGM Players

on BetMGM's Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted CO, IN, IA, MI, NJ, NV, PA, TN, WV, VA, DC, WY

Best For MGM Players

BestMGM Sportsbook

Bonus Code

SHARP

for a $1,000 Risk-Free Bet

If you’re part of the MGM VIP program, then the BetMGM sportsbook is for you. They offer a generous sign-up bonus and unique ongoing promotions, including weekly Money Monday. Backed by the reputation of MGM, one of the best in the industry, BetMGM is a sportsbook to watch.

 

Best For Retail Bettors

on Caesars' Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted NJ, NV, PA, IL, MI, IN, CO, IA, TN, VA, WV

Best For Retail Bettors

Caesars Sportsbook

First Bet Match

$1,001

Without a doubt, newcomers and experienced sports bettors alike are going to love Caesars Sportsbook. Its new app replaces the old William Hill sportsbook and provides a variety of excellent improvements and features sure to draw in new traffic and provide a great betting experience for everyone.

We particularly like the smoothness of the app’s interface, the live betting, and the opening bonus. 

Best Deposit Bonus Offer

on BetRivers' Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted CO, IL, IN, IA, MI, PA, VA, & NJ (Under SugarHouse brand)

Best Deposit Bonus Offer

BetRivers Sportsbook

Deposit Offer

$250

1x playthrough

BetRivers Sportsbook offers one of the best bonus offers for new players. Claim a 100% deposit bonus up to $250 with only 1x playthrough. Available in a handful of states, they are expanding quickly under the BetRivers brand. They operate as Sugarhouse in NJ.

Best Risk-Free Bonus

on FanDuel's Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted NJ, PA, IL, IN, IA, CO, WV, TN, MI, VA, WV

Best Risk-Free Bonus

FanDuel Sportsbook

Bonus Offer

$1,000

Risk-Free Bet

FanDuel is one of the most top-notch online sportsbooks in the US. Available in multiple states, they offer a wide range of sports and favorable odds. FanDuel Sportsbook offers one of the best risk-free bet offers for new bettors. 

 

 

Best For Parlays

on PointsBet's Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted CO, IL, IN, IA, MI, NJ & WV

Best For Parlays

PointsBet Sportsbook

2 Risk-Free Bets

$2,000

Fixed Odds & Pointsbetting

PointsBet is a lesser-known online sportsbook choice compared to FanDuel and DraftKings. This might change, though, due to its recent announcement of a 5-year partnership with NBC Sports, which can combine their noteworthy odds with the kind of on-air talent quality on par with FOX Bet and Barstool Sports.

For those in states where PointsBet is available, you’ll notice their odds for futures and even regular games can beat out many of the established big dogs in the US. 

They’re also always changing up their promos. But when this was written, they were offering two risk-free bets up to $1,000 for first customers.

Best For International Sports

on Unibet's Website

Available on Web Browser, iOS & Android

States Accepted AZ, IN, IA, NJ, PA & VA

Best For International Sports

Unibet Sportsbook

Deposit Bonus

$20

Free

Promo Code

BETBONUS

For $600 Risk-Free

Unibet is more well-known in the UK and Europe than it is in the US. But Unibet is making its brand known in the States.

Make no mistake, Unibet is one of the best sports betting apps out there. The selection of sports is absolutely massive, particularly in terms of its international events. And it offers a risk-free bet of up to $600. Is that significantly better than the standard $500? It is if you win!

Unibet is currently available in Arizona, Indiana, Iowa, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.

8 Best Online Sports Betting Apps In The US

DraftKings Sportsbook

  • Accessible On: iOS, Android, Web Browser
  • Available In: AZ, CO, IL, IN, IA, MI, NH, NJ, PA, TN, VA, WV & WY
  • Promo Offer: $50 free bet with $5 deposit + 20% match up to $1000
  • Why We Like It: DraftKings is widely considered the premier online sports betting app in the US, with unrivaled stability and accessibility as well as highly competitive odds.

DraftKings was established in 2012 as a Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) platform, and folks in most states can legally play DraftKings DFS

But over the past few years, the DraftKings Sportsbook has proven itself as arguably the best sports betting app and website in the US. As this guide is written, they’re the top-rated choice in the App Store, with 4.8 stars out of 5.0.

For new players, DraftKings features a 20% match on the first deposit for up to $1,000. The bonus money is awarded as $1 for every $5 bet. Also, new users get a $50 free bet with $5 deposit.

BetMGM Sportsbook

  • Accessible On: iOS, Android, Web Browser
  • Available In: AZ, CO, DC, IN, IA, MI, MS, NV, NJ, PA, TN, VA, WV & WY
  • Bonus OfferUp to $1,000 risk-free bet
  • Why We Like It: Backed by MGM Resorts International, this app is first-class and accessible to new and experienced bettors.

BetMGM is easily in the top ten most popular sportsbooks in the US, and on many lists, it’s considered in the top five best of the best. That’s not without merit either, as BetMGM offers a sports betting app that matches the quality of gambling that the MGM brand is famous for.

BetMGM is also one of the top sportsbooks in Nevada, the home of Las Vegas and some of the world’s most prolific sports bettors. BetMGM also offers a $1,000 risk-free bet.

Caesars Sportsbook

  • Accessible On: iOS, Android, Web Browser
  • Available In: AZ, CO, IN, IA, MI, NJ, TN, VA & WV
  • Bonus OfferUp to $1,001 risk-free bet
  • Why We Like It: Caesars has an absolutely massive selection of sports, particularly international competitions, making them the best choice for European soccer fans.

Caesars Sportsbook is the top choice for online sports bettors in Nevada as the most well-known choice among the surprisingly limited options in the state. But Caesars is an easy choice no matter where you’re located, with a huge list of sports that span the globe. If you’re into betting on international events, particularly European soccer, Caesars will likely be your best bet – literally.

For new members, Caesars offers new members a risk-free bet up to $1,001.

BetRivers Sportsbook

  • Accessible On: iOS, Android, Web Browser
  • Available In: AZ, CO, IL, IN, IA, MI, PA & VA 
  • Bonus Offer: 100% up to $250 with code SHARP250
  • Why We Like It: BetRivers, which is reskinned as SugarHouse Sportsbook in some states, offers one of the best and most straightforward promotions in US sports betting.

BetRivers, like Caesars Sportsbook, has a great selection of sports and competitive odds. However, the app is subpar and is rated less than 3.0 out of 5.0 stars in most states where it’s available. And that’s another somewhat annoying component: there’s a separate BetRivers app for each state it services.

But all that aside, BetRivers offers what may be the best bonus in online sports betting. They’ll double your first deposit by $250, and the only requirement is that you bet it at least once on odds -200 or longer. You could bet it all at once or place 250 individual $1 bets and anything between, which is a level of betting freedom most bonuses don’t offer.

FanDuel Sportsbook

  • Accessible On: iOS, Android, Web Browser
  • Available In: AZ, CO, CT, IL, IN, IA, MI, NJ, PA, TN, VA & WV
  • Bonus OfferUp to $1,000 risk-free bet
  • Why We Like It: The FanDuel Sportsbook offers a huge selection of sports and highly competitive odds. They also have one of the most reliable apps and some of the best ongoing promotions in the industry.

Like DraftKings, FanDuel launched as a Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) platform, and it too is available in almost all US states, even those without online (or retail) sports betting. 

In fact, the two companies planned a merger that was scrapped in 2017. And that may have been the best scenario for sports bettors, as the two brands compete against each other with awesome odds and exclusive promotion offers. We can safely say that joining both is probably a good idea to compare the odds before you place a bet.

New members can bet up to $1,000 risk-free on their first bet. If the bet loses, the money is refunded as bonus money.

WynnBET Sportsbook

  • Accessible On: iOS, Android, Web Browser
  • Available In: AZ, CO, IN, MI, NJ, TN & VA
  • Bonus Offer: Risk-free bet up to $1,000
  • Why We Like It: Bettors will appreciate a straightforward $1,000 risk-free bet refunded as a free bet of equal value.

WynnBET, backed by Wynn Resorts, is available in some of the biggest sports betting markets like New Jersey and Michigan. The sports betting app is user-friendly and offers competitive odds.

WynnBET users can expect a promo offer of a $1,000 risk-free bet as well as recurring promotions like “Bet $1 to win $100” available on several sports.

PointsBet Sportsbook

PointsBet is a lesser-known online sportsbook choice compared to FanDuel and DraftKings. This might change, though, due to its recent announcement of a 5-year partnership with NBC Sports, which can combine their noteworthy odds with the kind of on-air talent quality on par with FOX Bet and Barstool Sports.

For those in states where PointsBet is available, you’ll notice their odds for futures and even regular games can beat out many of the established big dogs in the US. 

They’re also always changing up their promos. But when this was written, they were offering two risk-free bets up to $1,000 for first customers.

Unibet Sportsbook

Unibet Sportsbook offers a no-fuss app with a clean interface. While it may not have some of the bells and whistles that more popular sportsbook apps offer, it is user-friendly and offers a great selection of sports. International sports fans will especially appreciate the selection. 

How To Install Online Sports Betting Apps On An Android Device

The Google Play Store does not allow real-money gambling apps (legal or otherwise). However, you can still download sports betting apps on Android using the following steps: 

  1. Visit the sportsbook website of the app you want using your mobile device.
  2. Download the application for Android onto your phone, making sure to allow the device to download apps from a third-party source.
  3. Now that the app is installed on your device, you can tap on the icon like any other app to open it.
  4. Now, all you need to do is log on or create an account to start using the sports betting functions.

How To Install Online Sports Betting Apps On An Apple iOS Device

There are quite a few sportsbook apps available in the Apple App Store, and the process to download these apps are quite simple and straightforward. Just follow these steps:

  1. Open the App Store and search for the sportsbook you want, making sure it’s the one that’s specific to your state. In some cases, like DraftKings and FanDuel, the same app applies to all states. But BetRivers and others are state-specific (e.g., BetRivers Sportsbook Illinois).
  2. Click on the download button.
  3. After installation, you can sign in to the application or register for an account if you do not have one yet.

Bonuses and Promotions At Legal Online Sportsbooks

Risk-Free Bet

As you might guess by the name of this bonus, your receive credits equivalent to your wagered amount, so you won’t lose money if your first bet goes wrong. Newly registered users of online sportsbooks enjoy this benefit as a form of guaranteed security during their first bet. It lets a user get a feel for how a platform works while they make an initial wager and see how things pan out.

The first bet is risk-free in the sense that you aren’t going to lose funds if the bet fails. However, once you use the bonus bet to wager on another game, you can still lose money if the bet fails a second time. So it isn’t risk-free forever, but it does offer the chance to make two bets for the price of one if you lose on the first wager.

FanDuel is one of the online sportsbooks that offers the highest risk-free bets, sometimes with maximums of up to $1000.

Deposit Or Match Bonuses

Known interchangeably as “match bonus” or “deposit bonus”, many companies offer this bonus as a way to encourage large initial deposits from new online sportsbook players. Essentially, up to a specified maximum, whatever you deposit into your account will be doubled with site credits so you can make more wagers.

For example, if you were to sign up to a sports betting website and deposit $20, you’d then get another $20 in site or app credits. On the other hand, if you deposit $300, you will receive an additional $300 in credits that you can use for wagering. What it all boils down to is that the more you deposit (up to a specific limit), the more credits you get, which leads to free wagers or larger bets on wagers you care about.

DraftKings is a good choice when it comes to deposit bonuses as they often offer up to $1000, which is a large sum of extra betting money when you start using the app or website.

Loss Rebates

One of the worst feelings is losing on a bet, but it’s going to happen at times when you take part in sports betting, whether you’re online or in a physical location. The good news is that a loss rebate can help you keep your money when you lose wagers, assuming you choose an online sportsbook that offers them. However, the way these bonuses work can vary, so we want to look at the options.

In some cases, you will need to make a specific deposit during a specified period and be a regular user of a sportsbook to qualify for loss rebates that can range from around 10 percent to 100 percent of what you lost in your wagers during that period. However, there are other sportsbooks operating online that will simply refund your losses during a specific period up to a maximum amount regardless of your history with the brand.

PointsBet Sportsbook is an example of a legal online sportsbook that sometimes offers loss rebates. You place certain types of bets, and if your overall wagers lead to a loss, you will have that amount refunded up to $1,500.

VIP Programs

The final popular bonus you can find with many online sportsbooks is a VIP program, which can offer a variety of different perks to members of the club. Finding a sports betting app that offers this bonus is an excellent option, but it’s just as essential to determine which brands have the best rewards from their VIP programs. Some of the things you can expect from VIP programs include free entries into sweepstakes, complimentary merchandise, cashback, better bonuses, and waived fees on payouts.

Everyone is going to have their own priorities in terms of which of these things are the most essential, so you should find a program that matches your needs. Some of the things to look for are the best rewards, who is eligible for a VIP program, and how often you’ll use the perks that these programs can offer.

FanDuel is one of the betting sites that offers a VIP program with a variety of perks. Members can enjoy a personal account manager, access to promotions, extra FanDuel merchandise, and more.

What Kinds Of Bets Do Legal Online Sportsbooks Offer?

Each sportsbook that operates online has a selection of wager options. Some are more common than others. The three below can be found at most legal sportsbooks. Here you can learn about how each of them works. Online betting sites also have other advantages, which we’ll outline later in this article.

Moneyline Wagers

A moneyline wager is one of the simplest kinds of wagers you can make at an online sportsbook. Basically, this wager involves betting on a specific team or individual to win a sports game or match. There are other wagers that focus on both who wins and by how much they win. However, moneyline bets are more simplistic and focus only on the person who wins.

For example, DraftKings offers moneyline wagers on table tennis based on the correct score, point spread, total points, total games, or winner of a listed point.

Prop Bets

Prop bets, also known as proposition bets, are prevalent on an international level. They are quickly growing in the United States with the introduction of online sportsbooks. Essentially, a prop wager means you bet on a specific player or a particular event that will occur in a game or a match. In some cases, you can bet on only one of these things, while in other cases, both will be available to wager on.

FanDuel, as an example, offers prop betting for the NFL championship. A user can look at a table and bet on an underdog or a favorite getting a certain number of points.

Parlay Bets

A parlay bet is more complicated than the two wagers above. It has a focus on two or more teams winning. One of the reasons this is a popular wager type is because it typically has a more significant payout than you would get when you select a single team to take a win. The payouts are more significant because of its difficulty since choosing several teams to win (and getting it right) is more challenging than selecting a single group or player.

BetMGM is one of the sportsbooks that offers this wager. You get a more substantial amount of money for each extra team that you guess correctly will have a specific point spread.

Which States Have Legal Online Sports Betting Today?

Online sports betting is legal in over a dozen states. There are a handful of states that are leading the pack. For example, New Jersey and Pennsylvania were early adopters of legal online gambling, including sports betting. Other states have since joined suit. West Virginia is interesting because the state legalized sports betting and online gambling. Also, Colorado and Illinois both debuted legal sports betting in 2020 and are poised to lead the industry for a variety of reasons.

Legal online sports betting is legal in the following states:

What Are The Benefits Of Using Legal Online Sports Betting Apps In The US?

The benefits of using legal online sports betting apps in the US over illegal sites are numerous. 

For one thing, you’re not breaking the law, so you avoid any potential legal consequences for betting at an illegal site. 

But beyond that, you know for sure that licensed sports apps will pay out your winnings no matter what. They also aren’t notorious for hiding their terms and conditions like illegal sites, which can “legitimately” withhold your winnings because you didn’t meet the 35x (or higher) playthrough requirements of a bonus.

The Apple App Store won’t list illegal apps either, so if you’re an iOS user, there are no sports betting apps unless they’re legal.

How We Rate Online Sportsbook Apps

When rating legal online sportsbook apps, several things are essential to consider. We try to take into account anything that affects how well a sportsbook operates so you can trust our assessments. Here are the top five things we look for when reviewing a sportsbook app.

  • Legal and Licensed – Every good sportsbook app should be both legal and licensed, which is the first thing we look for. This ensures that the application is legitimate, and comes from a company that you can trust.
  • Stability and Performance – Legal sportsbooks should also have a high level of performance and stability. We look at this to ensure that the app won’t quit out or freeze on you, which can be incredibly frustrating.
  • Usability on iPhone and Android – While the majority of mobile phone users prefer iOS devices, a huge number of sports bettors prefer Android. There is no excuse for these companies not to offer both.
  • Great Odds and Unique Betting Options – While many sportsbook apps have the same betting options, some go above and beyond. Considering how many betting options are available is also crucial in our ratings. We also compare and contrast odds on an ongoing basis to ensure our picks consistently offer the best.
  • Promotions and Bonuses – The number of promotions, and how much of a bonus they can provide, also factors into our ratings. Who doesn’t love free money?

Legal Online Sportsbook Apps In The US: FAQs

Why don’t I have online sportsbooks in my state?

Online sportsbook services may not be legal in your state. Initially limited to only a handful of states, this number is expanding through 2020. Currently, bettors must be located in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennesee, West Virginia, Michigan, Arizona, Virginia, or Washington DC to place sports bets online.

Why do legal online sportsbooks ask for my SSN?

In short, this form of identification helps verify that individuals are who they say they are. The government regulates online sportsbooks. It requires them to identify and log SSNs under the Bank Secrecy Act and the Patriot Act. To adhere to anti-money laundering protocols, your social security number, name, address, and other important information has to be provided.

Who regulates real-money online sportsbooks?

Each state in the United States is able to regulate sportsbooks available within the state. When the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, it gave states the option to offer legalized sports wagering. However, many states have not yet done this, and some face hurdles to offering sports wagering in their location.

How do I deposit at legal online sportsbooks?

There are many options to deposit money at online sportsbooks. However, the most popular method is by credit card. Many sportsbooks also allow the use of checks, bank wire transfers, eWallets, and PayPal. There are also sportsbooks that let you deposit using a check or through some popular types of cryptocurrency.

How do risk-free bets work at legal online sportsbooks?

A risk-free bet is a a type of wager. If you make a bet and lose, you will receive credit for a bonus bet equivalent to the original wager. The risk-free distinction means that you aren’t going to lose your money if your initial bet fails. If the bonus bet fails, however, you will lose whatever money you put down.

Can I pick up my money at a casino?

The answer to this question largely depends on the sportsbook and its partner casino. In most cases, the sportsbook website or application will send your money to your bank account. However, some sportsbooks will have other options available. For example, you can elect to have your check sent to your home. At that point, you can deposit it in your bank account yourself.

Is it safe to bet at legal online sportsbooks?

Yes. It’s largely safe to bet at legal online sportsbooks, but you should take precautions. Be sure to select a regulated and reputably-licensed company that has been in the business for years. It should have a history of positive reviews and few complaints.

About the Author

Amber Hoffman

Amber Hoffman is Managing Editor of GamblingOnline.com. A recovering attorney, she's spent almost a decade developing and managing websites and writing for a variety of industries. Amber became a Cubs fan after living a handful of blocks from Wrigley Field, much to the chagrin of her Mets-loving family and Red Sox-loving husband. Amber writes for a number of online sites including the food and lifestyle site Food And Drink Destinations.