Networks Best Bet For Regulated Online Poker In USA

Networks Best Bet For Regulated Online Poker In USAPost-Black Friday, US Poker is having a tough time returning to its glory days with disappointing revenue results coming out of its three regulated markets, and no other states seemingly motivated enough to adopt regulations of their own this year. Without a doubt, overcoming low traffic will be key to overcoming the significant challenges currently facing the country’s nascent iPoker industry, and recently it has been suggested the creation of poker networks represented the best way forward for the market.
Nevada has already grasped the need to share its player pool and the Nevada-based All American Poker Network (AAPN) plans to link WSOP.com Nevada with Treasure Island when the site eventually launches. In addition, Nevada agreed an interstate compact with Delaware earlier this year, and so all the pieces are gradually being put in place to set up a network which could one day serve as a suitable model for other states to emulate.
This poker network model also has the added benefit of enabling different gambling interests to more easily enter the competitive market place, in contrast to the current situation in which they must first scramble to partner up with just a few viable poker platforms. As a result, only a small number of partnerships are formed while many are left out of the market, and are others simply motivated to oppose online gambling altogether rather than support a market from which they feel excluded. Discussing the hugely influential role forming poker networks could have on America’s iPoker industry, Curtis Woodard from Online Poker Report, had this to say:
“By encouraging – and perhaps even by legislating – poker platform operators to license ‘skins’ to in-state interests including card rooms, tribal casinos, and other entities deemed fit by regulators, we can create a market in which the many interests are served without excessively splintering the all-important player liquidity. Rather than creating just a handful of partnerships that will leave out so many, and create staunch opposition from same, networks will create an opportunity for even small card rooms to extend their offerings online.”
Some analysts, however, see some cause for concern in promoting a poker network model, such as the likelihood most gaming interests would gravitate towards having a skin on a PokerStars network, thus bypassing the need for the various sites to innovate and compete with one another. Nevertheless, Woodard said he believes such a scenario would still benefit the industry as a whole by compelling other big operators, such as Party Poker and 888, to develop and upgrade their own platforms or be left by the wayside.
Curtis Woodard’s full article entitled “Networks Are the Way Forward for Regulated US Online Poker” makes some very interesting reading and can be read in its entirety here.

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