The first online poker rooms started popping up in the late 1990s. It wasn’t long before hundreds of thousands of players flocked to the internet to play for real money. In 2003, amateur poker player Chris Moneymaker won the World Series of Poker Main Event, and his victory became a national obsession. At the time, the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act was introduced, but the bill never passed. However, the United States Department of Justice did try to apply the Wire Act to online poker. This decision was a disappointment for the new states looking to regulate the industry.
Thankfully, in 2013 the US saw the return of regulated online poker. Many operators reported double or more traffic than they had previously experienced. But the industry remains in a state of flux. Online poker sites need to comply with a variety of rules and regulations. These restrictions limit risks the sites can take with their client money. Some websites find a way around the laws and have been successful.
In order to start playing, you’ll need to create an account. This can be done on a desktop computer, laptop, smartphone, or tablet. You’ll need to provide your name, date of birth, and address. Depending on the website, you may also be asked for a utility bill or other documentation to verify your identity. If you are a legal resident of the state where the site is located, you should be able to open an account.
Once you have your account, you can download the poker software. This software is designed to display odds and equity, as well as previous statistics for known players. A lot of sites offer poker training materials as well. Taking the time to learn a few basics is a great idea. Using the information you learn to become a better player will pay off in the long run.
Several states have passed legislation to regulate online poker. New Jersey, Nevada, and West Virginia all have legal online poker rooms. Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Connecticut are considering regulating the industry. However, California is still undecided.
Until recently, US residents could only participate in online poker if they were physically present in the state. After Black Friday, however, players in the US lost contact with the rest of the world player pool. When this happened, many operators found ways to circumvent the laws and get around banking issues. As a result, the number of sites accepting US players declined.
However, in April of 2022, Michigan became the first state to join a multi-state online poker compact. This agreement allows licensed operators in three states to share player pools. This means that they will have a larger network, which can potentially lead to more players.
Before the advent of the Internet, poker was played only in smoky bars and casinos. Now, it is played everywhere. Live games are not as entertaining as they once were. That’s why many casual players have turned to online poker. There are even mobile apps that let you play on your phone or tablet.