Online poker is the game of poker played over the Internet. It has been partly responsible for a dramatic increase in the number of poker players worldwide.
Traditional venues for playing poker, such as casinos and poker rooms are being intimidating for novice players. Brick and mortar casinos are also reluctant to promote poker because it is difficult for them to profit from it. Though the rake, or time charge, of traditional casinos is often high, the opportunity costs of running a poker room are even higher. poker online rooms, on the other hand, are cheaper because they have much smaller overhead costs. Online poker rooms tend to be more player-friendly. Online poker rooms also allow the players to play for low stakes (as low as 1¢) and often offer poker freerolls attracting beginners.
Online poker tables average ninety to hundred hands per hour as the rate of play is higher. The dealing and shuffling are instant, there are no delays relating to counting chips, and on average the play is faster due to “auto-action” buttons.
In the brick and mortar casino, the only real way to increase your earnings is to increase your limit. In the online poker rooms players have another option, play more tables. Depending on the site, a player might play from 4 to 10 tables at the same time, viewing them each in a separate window on the computer display. Some online players even play eight or more tables at once, in an effort to increase their winnings.
As traditional casinos provide the players with free meals, hotel rooms, and merchandise, online poker rooms reward their faithful customers through deposit bonuses, where the player is given a bonus code to enter when placing money into an account. The bonus code adds either a percentage, or a set amount of chips to the value of the deposit. Besides this, several online cardrooms employ VIP Managers to develop VIP programs to reward regular players and additional bonuses exist for players who wish to top up their accounts. These are known as reload bonuses.
Online poker rooms also offer online poker schools that teach the basics and significantly speed up the learning curve for novices. Many online poker rooms provide free money play so that players may practice these skills in various poker games and limits without the risk of losing real money.
Online poker is legal and regulated in many countries including several nations in and around the Caribbean Sea, and most notably the United Kingdom.
Looking forward, the online poker market is expanding its reach outside the PC. More companies are thinking of bringing their game to cellphones or interactive TV, although concepts are still nascent.
The online poker industry is sweeping the Internet world off its feet with an extraordinary force. The craze is growing to a size no one expected. Poker may be old news, but its reinvention is nothing less than a gigantic leap. Anyone hungry to capitalize on the next big Internet trend better join the table and play to win.