How Technology is Impacting Online Poker

by boomingworld

The world of poker is enjoying more time in the spotlight than it has in nearly 20 years. With players returning to casinos across the country and more states taking steps to legalize the online game, the sport is in the middle of an impressive growth period. Many organizations estimate that there are around 60 million poker players in the US at the moment, with the number likely to rise as the country continues to open back up and the game becomes easier to find.

Major networks have picked up on this surge in popularity. Last year, the largest annual poker event, the World Series of Poker, moved from its long-time home on ESPN for its new broadcast partner, CBS Sports. This move was a massive win for the sport and looks set to make the sport more accessible to more people. The 2021 World Series of Poker has helped drive that popularity after being beamed to more homes than ever before. But it isn’t just live games returning that have gotten people excited to play poker again. Recent films like Molly’s Game, which chronicled the rise and fall of Hollywood’s underground poker scene, helped bring poker into the mainstream.

Though the rules of poker haven’t really changed over the past several decades, one thing that has changed is the role that technology plays in how people prepare and play the game. People can now play the game anywhere in the world and get much closer to the original game than in the previous poker boom in the early 00s. Here are three ways that technology is changing online poker in new ways.

Using AI to Learn Strategy

Many industries run on AI models and predictions to help investors and bosses to make the right decision at the right time, but the same technology is changing how people approach preparing for poker games. According to the Wall Street Journal, many professionals are utilizing AI programs to help them know exactly when to bluff and when to call someone else. These programs go beyond merely calculating poker odds and account for countless variables, allowing players to know how much money to wager depending on the size of their stack or even where they are sitting at the table. This technology is helping to make more players far better both online and in in-person games.

Live-Hosted Games

The drawback of online poker used to be that it couldn’t replicate the feel of having a dealer at the table driving the action forward. The computer could do a lot, but it couldn’t replace the feel of a human sitting there interacting with players. Now, many online poker sites are introducing live-hosted games, which have a dealer overseeing them. This is closest to the in-person experience that the online game has ever gotten and is only possible because of improved technology both in players’ home computers and the sites but also in the increased internet speeds most areas are enjoying.

Virtual Reality Casinos

VR has gotten a lot of attention lately, but that is because it represents the next positive evolution of online interaction. As facial recognition software improves to allow avatars to express users’ expressions and emotions, the act of bluffing and outright lying to other players is reintroduced to the online game. This forces players to play as though they were in a standard casino, something that many online players might not have had to experience before and a huge change in the game’s dynamics.

If you’re looking to set up your online poker space, be sure to check out our effective living rules for small homes over on the Booming World blog.