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Poker News | Online Poker | News

Choosing an online poker room

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If you have decided to play online poker, the first thing you should know is what online poker rooms are.

An online poker room is a company which lets you use its software to play poker. They provide this service by taking a percent of money from most of played pots. This percent is called "rake", and that is where online poker companies make their profit.

The average rake is 5 percent, at a maximum of $3 per pot. Not every pot is raked though, as there are minimum requirements for how large the pot must be before it is raked, and these vary from one poker room to another.

If you wish to participate in an online poker tournament though, the buy-in has a fixed fee and an additional charge is added on for the rake.

The drawback of tournaments is that they take longer to finish. The upside is that the prize pool can definitely be worth the time invested depending on the size of the buy-in and the number of players vs. the amount of money invested by you.

With the rake discussed, it is time to analyze the poker rooms themselves. Generally, there are scores of online poker rooms available on the internet with each room boasting about their bonuses, features and promotions. In truth, there are only several large online poker networks and some independent poker rooms which truly differ from one another.

The networks represent an association of poker rooms which share their player traffic and software. A poker room which belongs to a poker network is called "a skin", there is little difference between the skins (if the skins are created already within the network) in the network - some even look the same. The biggest online poker networks are The Cryptological Network (Caribbean Sun Poker, Inter Poker), iGlobal Media (Party Poker, Poker Room), Prima Poker (Royal Vegas Poker, Colosseum Poker), and The Tribeca network (Golden Palace Room, Doyles Room ). Some of the bigger independent poker rooms include Poker Champs, Pacific Poker, Paradise Poker, Poker Stars, and Carbon Poker.

While at the first glance, there might seem to be a big difference in deciding which poker room to choose, there actually are many factors to consider if you want to play online poker successfuly. Here, at we have created a nice online poker room ratings table to show our visitors which online poker rooms are the best.

The first and probably the most important factor is the competition – and when one plays for real money, the soft competition is especially important if you don't want to do battle with skillful and aggressive players. If you are a beginner, the easiest way to avoid competition is to play at low and micro-limit tables where you will mostly find inexperienced players who are more likely to lose and give you a share of their money. If you are an advanced poker player however, the easiest way to determine the level of competition in an online poker room is to read its reviews at a poker authority site which is likely to give you an insight into an online poker room without the need to join it and find everything out yourself.

Most often, the smaller the room, the softer the competition. Let's say Pitbull Poker is a rather new room and doesn't have too many players, so the competition is really soft. But if you take Party Poker, which is the largest online poker room at the moment, you may find some really tough poker players there.

Poker room software is also an important factor which affects the choice of a potential customer – the room might be offering great bonuses, the player traffic might be high, but if the software is lacking in design or functionality, the value of recreation drops significally while playing in that room. According to our visitors and ourselves the best software title should be given to Titan Poker.

Another thing to consider when choosing an online poker room is its player traffic. The bigger the traffic, the more games and limits you have to chose from. Both high and low-traffic have their advantages as well as drawbacks, and the choice is yours. The largest online poker room for more than two years is Party Poker. It reaches 70.000 players at peak hours!

The level of bonuses and promotions is another important factor when choosing the room to play at - as the competition between online poker rooms gets stronger, the level and value of promotions becomes larger, and the bonuses these rooms offer vary in every aspect. For example, during the search for a suitable online poker room you may encounter bonuses and promotions like sign-up bonuses, deposit bonuses, bonuses which depend on the time you play, freerolls (poker tournaments with no buy-in), various loyalty programs and other ways a room tries to attract new players. The promotions and bonus leader of the whole online poker market today is Titan Poker. It offers 100% up to $500 deposit bonus and lots of other amazing promotions.

New and inexperienced poker players should consider well-known and the largest online poker rooms, as these are well established companies and there is always a lot of player traffic and low-limit games. The financial security of the bigger poker rooms is also more reliable than that of the less-known ones. A good place to start is taking a look at our online poker room ratings table which researched and updated often and is built according to the player votes.

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