Lightning Poker, Inc. was awarded a patent for its “Electronic Game Table” product by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent was granted on December 11, 2007.
Lightning Poker, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Lightning Gaming, Inc., a publicly traded company that was founded in 2004 by Brian Haveson, a professional poker player who is the former CEO of Nutrisystem.
The tables, that now have the patent, are automated poker tables with a screen in the center that displays multiple community cards and betting information for all players to see. The dealer-free table is set up for ten players and can run Texas hold’em, Omaha high, and Omaha high-low. Individual players have touch screens at their seats to show their hole cards, chip totals, and other information. There are even sound effects and advanced animation that are part of the LCD screens.
Haveson, who serves as Lightning Gaming’s CEO, said, “We are very pleased to see another of our patents issued from our portfolio of pending applications. This patent protects a critical feature of our automated poker tables, the center monitor, which is a key component to the player experience.”
The news of the patent comes only months after Lightning Poker completed its acquisition of Poker Automation, LLC, a private company that provided automated poker tables and related systems.
Currently, Lightning Poker and PokerTek are the only companies licensed to distribute electronic poker tables to casinos and card rooms in North America.