Has Online Poker Changed in the Last Decade?

By Sarah Thomas
January 18, 2020

It may surprise you to know that the answer to our title question is yes; quite a bit! The online poker world is a significantly different place than it was in 2010. It’s fascinating to look back at the changes.

Arguably, one of the biggest changes occurred in 2011 when Black Friday happened and the online poker world was hit hard. However, other more subtle changes have also made a big difference overall. Let’s take a closer look at some of them.

online poker

Marketing towards recreational players instead of high rollers

At the start of the last decade, online poker sites focused much of their marketing attention on attracting high rollers and successful players. They put out the message that there were plenty of unskilled players available just waiting to be conquered.

More recently, the number of deposits from recreational players has decreased. The overall player pool, especially of unskilled players, has become smaller. This has resulted in an increase in marketing and promotions aimed at recruiting recreational poker players.

Growth in live streaming

There is no doubt that live streaming has changed the world of online casinos overall, over the last decade. Online gaming providers like NetEnt use the latest technology in live streaming to bring table games like poker and blackjack into the homes of players.

Since it first started to become popular, mid-decade, live streaming has become mainstream. Just last year, PokerStars gave players the opportunity to link their account with a Twitch account, in order to live stream their play. To mark the occasion they announced a competition with two Platinum Passes as prizes. Georgina “GJReggie” James and Mason “pyefacepoker” Pye were recently announced as winners, in recognition of their committed streaming.

Popularity of the Lottery SNG

When Lottery SNGs first came on the scene, they were ridiculed by many players. However, they are now a feature of virtually every online poker operator. Their rise in popularity owes a lot to the simplicity of play that is attached to them and the fact that they provide the opportunity for a quick game.

Increase in smartphone use

The truth is that there are very few aspects of life that have not been changed by the continuing increase in smartphone use. After all, in 2012 there were around 1.08 billion smartphone users worldwide. This figure has now increased to around 3 billion, according to Statista.

As far as online poker is concerned, the changes that smartphone use has brought about are significant. Prior to the start of the last decade, online poker was played using a desktop or laptop. This meant that players were restricted as to when and where they could play.

Serious players still often choose to play live at the table or on a desktop. However, recreational players are more likely to use a phone or tablet to enjoy their regular poker play. This is especially the case when it comes to quick games, such as when playing a Lottery SNG.

When you start to look at the last decade in some detail, it’s interesting to see just how much the online poker experience has changed.



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Sarah Thomas poker author
Written By.

Sarah Thomas

Sarah Thomas is a content writer for entertainment websites. In her free time she enjoys playing all sorts of games, both live and online.


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