On line poker has really boomed in the early noughties. Every since the ‘Moneymaker’ effect in 2003 when a regular Joe Soap accountant, Chris Moneymaker won a seat in the World Series of Poker main event through a $39 satellite and went on to win first prize and take home a winners cheque of more than $2.5 million. That along with the increased coverage of poker on our national TV stations meant the demand for poker exploded not only in America but around the globe.
This in turn lead to the fruition of hundreds of on line poker rooms (some good, some bad) and their promotional behaviour. You know the old saying ‘you can’t beat a free lunch’. Well, you can if you pay a small price for it in the form of a rakeback.
The popularity of poker and poker tournaments in general has grown tremendously over the last 2 years and in many cases poker rooms have been able to offer lower entry fees for people to play in their poker rooms. This was done originally by shoeing low-end stakes players into high-stake games in order to attract them and offer them free meals, free nights etc. Poker rooms did this to entice people to play poker.
Nowadays you can play poker using a casino bonus, a deposit bonus, a no deposit bonus, a reload bonus or a rakeback bonus. Negative though are the terms and conditions attached with these bonuses. Usually you have to play a certain number of raked hands before you are able to withdraw the bonus money. You can also find private poker rooms that offer loyalty schemes and rakeback equivalent to up to 70% of your rake. This means the players that get knocked out early and don’t generate enough rake to completely payout for the bonus. Obviously you can’t expect to win every poker hand.
However you can expect a high percentage of winners as you generate a large amount of rake. A high percentage of winners will attract more players hence increase the amount of rake generated.
Most poker sites are now integrating automated poker odds calculators with their on line poker tables, this will calculate the range of odds for a particular hand. The odds calculator will first calculate the pot odds, the odds of your hand, the number of outs if any and the percentage of hitting all of these. These cards are then used to determine the range of hands that you are likely to be able to make money with and the percentage of winning that hand.
Some poker sites are also including a hand history analyser in their online poker versions. This can take hand histories and translate them into a user friendly fashion so that at a glance you can see what type of hands you have played and where you are likely to have made mistakes.
Probably the poker site that has done the most to popularise poker in the last couple of years has been Party Poker. They have hosted over 100 000 Master Series games and added a array of poker tournaments. Not only that but they have created a whole community and environment that is much more relaxed and easy to use then many other rooms. They offer a chat facility which is always busy allowing you to talk to ‘like minded’ people and make new friends. They offer a range of different poker games including 10 seated and 6 seated cash games. They also host ring games and tournaments for non poker players.
Another place that the industry sacked up and has become much more household is the threshold run of the Potsquads poker room. You can play the cash games and pots with loads of money and huge prizes for the final table. They have an array of limits ranging from penny limits to high roller limits. They also have tournaments for any player no matter how big or small a player they are.
There are a whole host of poker tournaments including qualifiers to the WSOP, WPT and APPT. The qualifiers to some of the big poker tournaments including the Potsquads, APPT and WPT have incredible prizes including trips to Las Vegas and the chance to be divisional champs.
The final piece of the puzzle is the creation of the virtual poker room. It has been four years in the making and will look to bring the experience of playing poker anywhere to your living room. You can use your mobile to play while you are on the train or the bus. It will make it easy to play when you miss the poker game since you can play on your phone from anywhere in the world. It is a handy way to keep up with the action and income.