Electronic Poker Tables
Electronic poker tables are virtual poker tables where all of the decisions are made on a computer screen. One of the popular tables is the PokerPro table made by PokerTek. PokerPro is the only approved automated poker table in Nevada.
Benefits of electronic poker tables
- No dealer needed. This saves money on the cost of the dealer.
- No tipping needed. Dealer tips can cut into a player's profits quite a bit.
- No player or dealer cheating. It is not possible to cheat at these tables.
- No dealer mistakes, since there is no dealer.
- Unlimited game variations - The table can be configured easily by poker room management, such as Texas Hold'Em, Omaha Hi and Hi/Lo, 7-Card Stud Hi, Hi/Lo, and Razz.
- Easily calculated pots - This is important in games like no-limit and pot-limit where it can be difficult (especially in pot-limit) to manually calculate the total bets.
- More efficient tournament operations.
- Customizable game rules, such as: kill pots, straddles, and blind chops.
- Customizable options, such as rabbit-hunting.
- Game analytics, such as: hand histories, flop %, average tournament stack.
- Jackpots - The instituting and administering of jackpots in easier with electronic poker tables.
- Player rating - It is easier to allow a player to get rated (i.e. comps, etc), which is an area where poker has always been very inefficient.
- No downtime - You don't have to wait for shuffles or dealer changes.
Poker Players' Opinion
Most poker players don't like electronic poker tables, for a couple of reasons. First, most poker players love the tactile aspect of poker - playing with their chips, throwing the chips into the pot, and rubbing their cards on the table.
Second, many players state that it is harder to get reads on the other players. Even though you are playing against people in person, the opposing players are staring down at their screens instead of staring outward towards the table. It makes the game a lot more insular and de-socializes the game quite a bit. Playing on an electronic table is basically like playing online poker, but against your opponents in person. You can read the other player's tells less with an electronic poker table, but more than online poker.
The biggest benefit, similar to online poker, is much faster game play. Anytime you have a positive expectation, you will want the game to play faster.
March 1, 2013