What Is Online Poker?

Online poker is a popular form of real money gambling, allowing players to play for cash prizes from the comfort of their own homes. The game is played on a computer or mobile device, and it requires very little in terms of hardware. This means that it can be played on the same devices as most other internet activities, including surfing the web, watching videos and sending emails. It is also an intellectual game that rewards actual skill, unlike slots or the lottery.

When playing online poker for real money, it is important to find a reputable casino that is licensed by the state where it operates. This ensures that the casino follows strict regulations that protect player accounts and information. It is also recommended to only play at sites that offer multiple methods for funding an account, as this will make the process much faster.

Depending on the type of online poker site, depositing funds can be done via a bank account, credit card or prepaid voucher. Once the account is funded, the player can start playing for real money. Players can also use an online poker app to play the game on their mobile devices.

While the rules of online poker are very similar to live poker, there are a few differences. For example, the player is not able to read any physical ‘tells’ from their opponents, so players must rely on other indicators such as betting tendencies. This is why some players believe that bad beats happen more often online than in live poker.

Another difference is that the size of a pot can have an impact on whether or not a call is smart. This is because the player is paying a price for getting their chips into a good position, and they may have to call a bet with an inferior hand. Pot odds are a great way to evaluate these situations.

In the US, several states have legalized and regulated online poker, including Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware. These three states have formed a multi-state agreement called MSIGA, which allows them to share player pools. This has led to an increase in traffic for all three states.

The COVID-19 pandemic is believed to have driven players who normally play at live venues towards online poker. This was especially true for professional and recreational players. As a result, many operators reported a significant increase in their daily player volumes. These increases are expected to continue into 2023.