Online poker is simply the game of online poker played over the Internet with no physical cards involved. It has, over time, largely been responsible for a great increase in the amount of online poker players all over the world. In fact, many countries around the world now have complete online poker casinos as part of their public licencing systems, with hundreds of thousands of people playing on an annual basis. However, what exactly is online poker, and how does it work?
Online poker sites offer many of the same features as a land based casino, from poker tournaments to live dealers, as well as the same bonuses and promotions. They may not offer the same payout or the same’prestige’ as a real money casino, but online poker players do still get the same great service and the same chance to win. The main difference is that the player doesn’t have to leave his computer in order to get to a real money casino and play his favourite casino games.
Although there are many arguments over whether online poker sites are ‘live’, in terms of the services and benefits they provide, the law considers them to be ‘online gambling’ according to the U.S. Congress, which has legislated against these companies’ practices via the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UUEEP) and the United States Senate Conference on Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UMGA). The U.S. Congress and the states have also separately banned outright the payment for gambling online, through credit cards and other such methods. This means that all online poker sites are operating in an illegal fashion – even though many people still enjoy playing on some of these sites using their credit cards.
If you want to play online poker, you need to understand a bit more about what it is and how it works. A brief summary of the basics: although it looks like a traditional casino game, it is actually a form of ‘interactive gambling’. Online poker rooms are governed by complex algorithms, which means that it is impossible to predict what cards the players will draw, and there is absolutely no chance that the result will be anything other than the numbers posted on the website. That said, online poker rooms still allow players to wager real cash, and the chances of winning are calculated based on the chances of the randomly chosen numbers being generated. The number of players at any given table is limited, so there is no danger of an endless competition amongst online poker players, and the place where the ‘action’ actually occurs is somewhere else entirely.
There are three different kinds of online poker – namely, an internet poker room, a web-based poker room and live action games, i.e., playing against the computer. Each room type has its own advantages and disadvantages. The internet poker room has the least risks and rewards, since it can be easily setup and run from virtually anywhere with an internet connection. The web-based rooms offer the biggest potential for profit, since the players have to meet in the same place, but the drawback is that there are no physical cards to deal with or no counterbalance in case the computer wins.
Full Tilt Poker, a leading online poker room offers a variety of different betting strategies, including progressive betting, no limit betting, and the now infamous betting in the money line. The progressive betting strategy is probably the most famous and widely used, and it involves a set amount of money which you agree to bet on each hand, regardless of whether you actually have the cards to make the wager. The money in the pot is kept increasing by the rake system, and the player who has the most money at the end of the session wins. The no limit betting strategy is similar, except that it does not require you to put any money into the pot. The online poker celebrities mentioned above play this variation in full tilt poker all the time, and it is a very profitable strategy, which has made many players very rich.