The first players to test out New Jersey’s burgeoning Internet gambling industry will get their chance during an eight-hour window on Nov. 21.
Next week begins a five-day trial period of New Jersey’s systems prior to a full launch expected on Nov. 26. Players will be able to bet with real money, but play will be by invitation only.
During the five-day window, operators will be required to test identity verification systems, geolocation systems, and transaction processing systems. All identity verification must be performed in the presence of a representative of the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, division spokeswoman Lisa Spengler said Wednesday.
“My staff will continually assess the progress of each platform provider before allowing them to open gaming to the general public on Nov. 26,” division Director David Rebuck said. “The soft opening will be used to demonstrate to the division that all systems perform as required under the stress of live gaming and that operational and revenue reporting controls are effective.”
If regulators aren’t satisfied with the testing, the the division has the authority to extend the soft play period beyond Nov. 25 while additional testing is done, Spengler said.
Play will extend between 6 p.m. and 2 a.m. on Nov. 21 and 22. On Nov. 23 play will begin at 8 a.m. and extend until 12 a.m. the following day. By Nov. 24 and 25, 24-hour play will be allowed.
Tobin Prior, CEO of Ultimate Gaming which has partnered with Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort, said Wednesday that the company was told it can have no more than 500 concurrent players logged in during the trial period.
“We have to conduct a series of tests over a period of days to satisfy the regulators,” Prior said.