There’s a lot of hype out there about online poker, but it’s important to remember that this game is a bit different than other forms of online gambling. In fact, it has been around for quite a while, but it has only recently achieved massive popularity. This popularity is due to technological advances that make the game more accessible.
In short, you can play online poker for real money in a handful of states, including Nevada, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania. However, if you’re looking to take advantage of the perks of playing online, you’ll need to visit a site that has been licensed by the state. These sites typically allow you to sign up for a free account so you can get used to how the games work before you start playing for real money.
You may not know it, but online poker is a huge business. Currently, card rooms that feature the game take in north of $1 billion a year. The most successful companies are able to count on a large global liquidity pool to support their operations.
The first state to legalize online poker was Nevada. This was followed by Delaware. Online poker is also legal in states like Hawaii, Oregon, and California. Interestingly enough, many states that are located in the Caribbean Sea also have legalized the game. While a few are still in the early stages, they’re proving to be very lucrative markets.
Fortunately, there are more state governments that are looking into this type of legislation. For example, Alaska is currently debating the merits of online poker. If the state makes its move, it would have to enlist the help of other states. That would mean creating a licensing body and partnering with other states to make the online poker economy a thriving one.
One thing you’ll notice about online poker is the speed with which it operates. Unlike live games, which can last for a full day or more, players can log on and play multiple tables simultaneously. Another plus is that online poker operators don’t have to pay you interest on your bankroll, unlike brick-and-mortar casinos.
When you first play online poker, you’ll have to download a poker application to your device. Depending on the site you choose, you’ll need to provide your birth date, address, and last four digits of your social security number to verify that you’re in the age group allowed to participate in the game.
The same thing applies to tournaments. Some of the most popular online poker tournaments can span the course of a single day. Fortunately, these websites are improving their anti-fraud measures to combat this, too.
On a smaller scale, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on the industry. As a result, most live gaming venues have closed up shop and some unlicensed sites have vanished altogether. But, a new crop of reputable sites are making the most of the situation and introducing innovative new features to attract and retain players.