Online poker has been responsible for a huge boom in the number of players, and the game is becoming increasingly popular. It is a game of skill, and many people choose to play online because they can practice skills without risking any money. However, it is important to understand the rules of the game before you play for real money. We have written this article to help you do just that.
This page contains everything you need to know about online poker from the best sites to the most common deposit methods and bonus programs. In addition, we cover a wide range of state and federal laws that impact the game in America. Our goal is to keep everyone from casual gamers to poker pros up to date on the latest information.
The first ever online poker hand was dealt on January 1, 1998 on the Planet Poker site. The interface was basic, but the fact that players could play real money poker was groundbreaking at the time. Eventually, other sites emerged that offered better graphics and stable software.
While some of these new sites were more user friendly, they didn’t catch on as quickly as Planet Poker did. In the mid-2000s, Chris Moneymaker’s World Series of Poker victory helped online poker become a major industry. After that, a few big setbacks hit the regulated US market. Most notably, Congress passed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) in 2006, shutting off a lot of sites to U.S. customers.
Despite this setback, some regulated online poker sites were still able to stay in business. They did so by offering a wide range of payment methods and tournament formats, including freerolls and low stakes games. They also stayed on top of changing state and federal laws, updating their terms of service to reflect the new reality.
Since the end of UIGEA in 2021, the number of regulated online poker sites has increased significantly. Nevada and Delaware signed a deal in 2014 to combine their player pools, and New Jersey joined a few years later. Now, the MSIGA includes seven states that offer regulated online poker.
Aside from the sheer number of available games, online poker sites are often attractive to players because they offer a variety of bonus programs. Most of these bonus programs give players a certain amount of bonus cash simply for making a deposit. This can be used to try out a new poker site, or to play for real money in some of the freeroll and low stakes games they offer.
Lastly, most of the top poker rooms offer multi-tabling, quick seating, rabbit hunting, snap cam, and more advanced features to make their platforms more appealing to experienced players. While some of these features may not be the most important for a newcomer, they are nice to have when choosing an online poker room. This is especially true for players who are looking to move up to higher stakes and compete with the top players in the game.