Online poker is a relatively new phenomenon that gained in popularity in the early 2000s. This was partially due to a young amateur player named Chris Moneymaker winning the World Series of Poker Main Event and revolutionizing the game. Online poker is played over the internet and allows players to compete with each other in real time.
The main advantage of playing online is that you can play in multiple games at the same time. You can also choose from different formats like Sit & Go’s and tournaments. Most online poker sites have a variety of games and stakes to choose from. You can also find beginners tables which are great for new players who are getting used to the speed of online poker.
Another benefit of online poker is that it’s much easier to find esoteric games like limit hold ’em and Omaha hi/lo. In live poker you’ll have a harder time finding these types of games, even at the largest casinos and rooms. Another advantage of online poker is that you can track your opponents stats with software programs. This allows you to see how many hands they have played and how often they fold. These programs can help you find leaks in your own game.
Some online poker sites use their own proprietary software while others utilize a number of different software packages. Some of the more popular programs are Poker Tracker and Holdem Manager. These programs offer a full range of features including analyzing your own stats and tracking your opponents. Some of these programs are free to download while others have a price tag.
Lastly, online poker sites often have a chat function. This is especially useful if you’re playing with a friend and want to discuss the game. You can also use the chat feature to ask questions and get answers from other players. It’s important to keep in mind that online poker chat can be very addictive so don’t spend too much time on it.
One issue that’s unique to online poker is the fact that players come from all over the world and deal in a variety of currencies. Some sites use an automated system to convert currency, while others require players to do this manually. The latter method typically comes with a small premium, which can add up over time.
In addition to the various game variations, online poker offers a lot of different table sizes and stakes. Most sites have an option to sort their games by stakes, which can be helpful for new players. This helps you quickly find the games that are right for your skill level and budget. There are also several ways to filter for specific games, like low or high limit games. In the long run, this can be an extremely valuable tool for any poker player.