Technology has not only shaped the business world and the market structures but has also played a major role on the game of poker. Nowadays, the game of poker can be played over the internet hence giving rise to the “online poker”. Now that many people can access the internet, Online Poker is a contributor to the popularity of poker players all over the world over the recent past.
With the huge numbers of players of online poker, with the highest number on PokerStars, and consequently Internet Gaming players, a recent research carried out on the Revenues collected from the Online Poker showed that they were totaling to an estimated 1.4 billion dollars by the year 2004.This clearly shows the popularity that online gambling has acquired such that one among four dollars is gambled online.
Poker game was only played in casinos and poker rooms in the past which were located in dubious places. This posed a great challenge especially for the beginners in poker as they were not used to such environment associated with the game. As we all know, profit margins from poker is relatively low compared to other gambling games such as the slot machines which made the casino owners not to indulge much in the game.
This led to the increasing need to lower the high costs of running the poker game as the poker rooms was also a very expensive venture. When poker games took to online, the running costs incurred were very low. This meant that the online venues were very affordable as compared to the poker rooms. Since there are no entry fees charged, more players got the chance to fully participate in the poker games, especially the amateurs and also the rich professional players.
Although the online platforms have had a very positive impact on the poker game, there are also risks and challenges faced as well. These sites are prone to fraudsters which might lead to unsuspecting players losing money.
However, measures have been taken to curb the common types of fraud such as collusion which majorly occurs among the poker players. Some of the measures include collusion detectors placed by the online platforms and also IP address checking at the open proxy servers. How does this work to combat fraud? This ensures that players at the same household do not gamble on the same tables.
Online Poker was pioneered in the late 90’s where the first online card room, Poker Planet, presented the actual money games which was first played in January 1st 1988. With the high level of stiff competition experienced by the Online Poker platforms, innovative attractive features have been designed to attract aspiring players.
Some of the new attracting features by the Online marketers that has revolutionized the poker game is the placement of satellites which meant that those who were champions in the online world could participate in the real poker games. One of the poker stars founded by this project is Chris Moneymaker who got the chance to participate in the Poker Series tournament and scooped himself the coveted price. Grey Raymer is another good example of a poker star who got entry to the main tournament through the online card.
Over the years, that is the late 2004 to 2008, tremendous advancement has taken place in the Online Poker business. One of the largest Online Poker cardrooms called ParadisePoker.com was acquired by the sport betting during this time and also Party Poker, which is another very large online cardroom, went public on the stock exchange market.
Online Poker is very popular in the United Kingdom and the countries around the Caribbean Sea region which is a legal venture. The United States have also been trying to authorize Online Poker by regulating the Online Poker card rooms. However, this has not been a success as the bill was disputed with the allegations that Online Poker may be illegal.
This halted the American broadcasting from publicizing and marketing the online poker sites.
Online Poker in the US was faced with great opposition after the President officiated the law which made Online gambling in the country to be an illegal venture. This led to the closure of the major online sites in the country including Party Poker, Pacific Poker and bwin among others.
However, many liberations against the law signed by the president were conceived to liberate and protect the rights of the Online gamblers in the country. Although the efforts seemed to be futile and full of drawbacks, the liberators did not give up. Their attempts were successful by April 30th 2013 when Nevada was the first state in the US to authorize Online Poker to individuals of 21 years and above. New Jersey also legalized Online Poker by November. This was certainly the breakthrough of Online Gambling in the US.
For a business to be successful, profits have to be earned to ensure growth and development. Online Poker has been successful because of the finances generated by the Online Poker rooms. How is the revenue collected? First way is by the rake which is a percentage of the money in the ring game pots. Another way is by the money collected from the side games of online poker such as the Black jacks and roulettes which are always very hard to crack by most players. Lastly, revenues are collected from money invested from the client’s deposits.
Online poker is guaranteed of fairness and safety of the players as they are licensed by the major auditing institutions such as the PricewaterhouseCoopers to ensure that the favor of the games is not towards the house side.
Cheating in games is a common occurrence which many players indulge in so that the outcome is in their favor. These are unfair practices that should be greatly avoided by the players. One of the common cheating practices in Online gambling is the insider cheating where an employee in the poker rooms takes to advantage of his ease to access of the system and plays the Online Poker games with an added advantage. This is a major challenge of Online Poker games and measures are being taken to combat the malpractice.