Betfair is the world’s largest online sports betting company. When they launched their poker room, Betfair Poker, in the Cryptologic network, it quickly became popular as it gave all their sports betting customers simple access to poker. In autumn of 2005, Betfair bought PokerChamps, along with their software company, Aglet. This could mean a change of network for Betfair Poker, although it is not yet certain. However, we believe that players at Betfair Poker will benefit from this consolidation, regardless of which poker room ends up in which network, as poker will play a leading role in the company. The Cryptologic network has grown at a considerable pace, with the biggest gains made during 2004. The options to play with dollars, euros and pounds, regardless of what currency you have in your account, as well as a variety of attractive offers have made Betfair Poker a very interesting option.
Software and graphics
The software program used by Betfair Poker comes from Cryptologic as that is the network they are part of. The client may not be the most aesthetically pleasing, but it has still managed to deliver a pleasant colour scheme in blue, which makes it easy on the eye without becoming annoying over time. There are a number of interesting adjustments that can be made, for example, you can set the dealer to tell you what is going on at all times. One nice functionality is that you can keep track of how much time you have left to make a decision, not just receive a 10 second warning, as is common on other poker clients.
Games and numbers of players
At Betfair you will find Texas Hold’em, Omaha, Omaha Hi/Lo and 7-Card Stud. The Fixed Limit tables range from $0.25/$0.50 up to £150/£300, whilst the Pot and No-Limit tables range from $0.15/$0.25 up to £25/£50. Peak times occur during the evening in Sweden, when you will often find between 8-10,000 players logged in.
There are a large number of interesting tournaments on offer and Betfair also provides many satellite games to live events and decent tournaments with guaranteed prize pots. The satellite games offered are obviously dominated by the World Series of Poker and different World Poker Tour tournaments. These tournaments are often good preparation and we recommend you take a look at them if you are interested in playing in the satellite games.
Betfair Poker has Swedish telephone and email support. Emails are supposed to be answered within 24 hours. We have heard a lot of good things about Betfair’s support.
Deposit and withdrawal options
Deposits: Neteller, Visa, MasterCard, Bank transfers, Cheques.
Withdrawals: Neteller, Visa, Cheques, over the counter bank withdrawals
Decent amount of players at higher levels
Large and well-known company
Small lacks in the software and platform
Poor traffic at the Omaha (inc. Hi/Lo) tables
Relatively high rake