Demand for digital lottery tickets skyrocket after apps crash, Thai government says

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The Government Lottery Office (GLO) said on Friday that the new batch of digital lottery tickets saw stronger sales after Krungthai Bank’s mobile apps collapsed the day prior when the system overloaded. 

Lawaron Saengsanit, chairman of the GLO, said more than 2 million lottery tickets out of 5.17 million were sold after the online selling began at 6 am. In the last draw, Lawaron said there were around 800,000 tickets sold in the first six hours.

“Lottery buyers started to change their buying behaviour, as the selling via mobile app is convenient,” Lawaron said. “More importantly, the price of each lottery ticket costs 80 baht.” 

The online lottery is an attempt by the Thai government to address the overpricing of lottery tickets by certain vendors who sometimes charge 100 or 120 baht for each lottery ticket.

On Thursday, the day of the lottery draw, Krungthai Bank told customers that two banking apps, Krungthai NEXT and Pao Tang, had crashed owing to a 15-fold increase in concurrent users after the prizes were announced.

The GLO expects the digital lottery ticket sales in the first to surpass that of the last draw of 2.4 million tickets. The total number of digital lottery tickets per draw will stay the same. However, the GLO is planning to propose to the lottery committee to consider increasing the tickets.

The GLO expects that digital lottery ticket sales on the first day would exceed the last draw’s first day sales of 2.4 million tickets. 

However, the total number of digital lottery tickets available for each draw will stay unchanged. The GLO plans to suggest to the lottery committee that the number of tickets be increased to meet the high demand.

In the event of winning a prize, digital lottery ticket buyers will be notified by the time of the lottery draw day. They can have the prizes wired into their Krungthai Bank accounts with some fees.

In a 2019 report by the Center for Gambling Studies, researchers found that around 30.4 million Thais engaged in some form of gambling. 

“People should only buy digital lottery tickets via the Pao Tang app to avoid fraud,” said Anucha Nakasai, an officer in charge of handling overpriced lottery tickets.

“The system is secure and they can certainly receive the prizes if they win.”

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