Online poker is a game that allows players to take part in real money games at any time of day from the comfort of their own homes. It is a game that rewards actual skill unlike the likes of slots and the lottery and it is a highly popular form of gambling that has a huge following across the globe. While the USA is a little more restricted on how you can play it, most other countries have very well regulated online poker sites.
The first step in getting started is to sign up for an account with an online poker site. This will involve providing some personal details such as your name, address and date of birth. You will also be asked to create a username and password. Once this has been done you will be ready to deposit some funds and get playing.
Some of the best online poker sites offer free play for players to try out the software before depositing any money. This is a great way to familiarise yourself with the interface and to practice your skills without having to risk any cash. This is usually available through the lobby of a poker site and can be found in the “Free Play” section.
Most poker sites have a range of different games available and they are generally categorized by their stakes. This means that you can find a table to suit your budget and your skill level. In addition to the standard casino based games you will often be able to play tournaments, sit and go’s and spin and go’s.
Another important feature to look for is the ability to track your poker results. This will help you see how well you are performing and if you need to improve your game. This is especially important if you are trying to win real money. Most poker sites will have a player stats tab that will allow you to view your session results including information such as win-rate, number of flops seen and how many times you’ve gone to showdown.
While poker is a game of chance over the short term, it is a game of skill over the long run and the top pros spend as much time working on their games as they do playing. You can hone your poker skills by signing up to training sites such as Chip Leader Coaching or Upswing Poker, networking with successful pros and brutally analyzing your own game after every session.
While there is still a long way to go before poker is completely legalised in the United States, there are a growing number of options for players looking to enjoy the game from home. Many operators have jumped through the regulatory hoops required to be able to operate in a number of states including Pennsylvania, Michigan and West Virginia. Those that are licensed can use geolocation software to verify player locations and then offer players a variety of secure deposit methods. This includes credit and debit cards, pre-paid cards, third party eWallets and even good old fashioned wire transfers.