About PokerStars Mobile App
If you love to play poker and own a mobile device, but have yet to go mobile with your poker play, what are you waiting for? Today, it seems, every major online poker operator has jumped on the mobile bandwagon, but that doesn't mean that all of the mobile poker sites and the PokerStars apps you need to download to access them are of equal quality. If nothing but the best will do, your obvious choice is the biggest and most technologically advanced online poker site in the world, PokerStars.
If you are a person who is on the move a lot, there have probably been many frustrating occasions when you missed out on a tournament, special offer, or other lucrative opportunity simply because you were nowhere near your home computer. (For info on the main site, see our PokerStars review.) The PokerStars app is free, looks great and is easy to download and install on any device.
Perhaps you didn't realize that the same mobile phone or tablet you use for many other day-to-day functions you can now also use to play poker. Or possibly you knew that but have yet to get involved because you figured the very limited choice of games available to you was not worth your time. While limited games and the absence of other desirable features discerning online poker players depend on is definitely a problem with some of the apps, PokerStars mobile poker not only does not have those shortcomings; it provides a mobile experience that is probably as comparable as it can get to playing on the computer. The one important difference is that instead of being tied down to your home PC or to someone else's browser, you can be anywhere, and the little gadget in the palm of your hand is making it possible.
The PokerStars poker apps are free. All you have to do to get in on the action is follow the easy instructions for downloading the latest app for your Apple iOS or Android device. Then maybe the next time you are waiting at a restaurant for a late friend, instead of looking at your watch every 30 seconds, you can win the cost of dinner in a cash game. Or you could turn your next long, boring, expensive flight into a very enjoyable and potentially profitable one playing in a PokerStars mobile real money sit and go!
PokerStars Mobile Review
History and Background
PokerStars, online since 2001, was at one time the leading poker site in the United States. In 2002, PokerStars launched the World Championship of Online Poker, which has since become the biggest online poker series in the world. The site's popularity peaked after unknown amateur player Chris Moneymaker miraculously captured the top prize in the 2002 WSOP. Amateur and professional poker players alike bombarded PokerStars hoping to duplicate his success and become "moneymakers" themselves.
Then, on April 15, 2011, the day that came to be known in the poker community as "Black Friday," PokerStars was shut down by the U.S. Government. Even though, to this day, PokerStars remains off limits to U.S. residents, that fact has not altered its position as the largest poker website in the world. PokerStars hopes to become even bigger one day by being once again allowed to operate legally in the U.S.
The site's integrity was never in doubt since the U.S. online customers who had accounts with PokerStars were paid. In addition, in 2012, PokerStars settled its case with the Department of Justice and purchased the assets of Full Tilt Poker, and has been returning owed money to former customers of that site as well.
Today, with approximately 50 million registered users and thousands logged on playing for real money at any given time, the position of PokerStars as the world's leading poker site seems secure. Our PokerStars mobile review found that its close attention to the growing popularity of mobile device play has helped to cement that first place standing. PokerStars introduced its first downloadable iOS mobile app in January, 2012. One month later, a second PokerStars app was made available for Android devices.
Security and Fair Play
PokerStars is licensed in the Isle of Man. The very fact that PokerStars has been operating successfully online since 2001 is a clear indication that this is a legitimate site that conducts its business fairly and responsibly. Had it been anything but that, the site certainly would not have been able to rebound from the legal problems that led to its being shut down in the U.S. in 2011 and continue its worldwide presence.
Our PokerStars mobile review found that another indication that this is a safe and secure place to play, and that its customers are being treated fairly, is the ongoing review of the site by independent auditors. Also, just as the site does its part to ensure integrity, it has zero tolerance for player collusion. The endorsement of PokerStars by well-respected internationally known poker pros like Daniel Negreanu, Barry Greenstein, and Greg Raymer provides an additional basis for placing one's trust in this site.
PokerStars uses its own high quality software, which it is continually updating, not only to take advantage of the very latest in online computer and mobile technology, but also to ensure complete safety to its users.
In order to play the PokerStars games on your iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone, or smartphone, you will need to register and set up an account which you can do either through the web cashier on the downloaded mobile app itself or on the computer. All of the information you need to get started is at www.PokerStars/mobile. There you will see that you have a choice of two apps you can download depending on what type of mobile device you own. One, which you can download on the App store, is for Apple iOS devices. The other, available directly from the PokerStars website, is for Android devices. You can download either of these apps absolutely free.
These apps are far superior to what most of the others have to offer, and as a PokerStars mobile player, you should find very little that is different from what you would experience playing on your computer. The following are just some of the many special features you can look forward to once your mobile poker PokerStars iPhone or Android app is downloaded onto your phone or tablet.
Quick Seating allowing you to instantly select and be seated at your ring game or tournament game of choice from a wide range of options:
- Personalized avatars and table design
- Web cashier letting you do all your banking directly from your mobile device
- Multi-tabling-up to 5 tables on iPads and up to 4 tables on other devices
- Ability to watch animated replays of the last hand and review hand histories
- Search feature to search for and track specific players
- Tutorials specifically designed for handset and tablet users Opportunity to chat with other players
Another great feature of these apps is that you can switch back and forth between your computer and mobile device. For example, you could be playing on your computer but have to go somewhere, so you can resume your play with little interruption on your mobile phone.
As if all that isn't enough, PokerStars has launched several additional apps to enhance your poker playing experience even more.
- Poker Stars TV App: Available at the Amazon App Store or Google Play You can be miles from home and not miss a televised major poker event. You can watch the shows directly on your phone with the help of the PokerStars TV app. You can even share poker videos with your Facebook friends.
- European Poker Tour App: Available at the Amazon App Store or Google Play Check tournament schedules, rules, and the structures of different events, and see the latest event related news, tweets, and photos.
- Poker Stars Clock: Download on the App Store This app will come in handy if you are running a poker tournament at home and will help make sure every aspect of the game, including when it is time for the blinds to increase, runs smoothly.
Of course, no site can be perfect and there are certain features that are not offered with PokerStars. mobile apps. One of those is the use of third party software while playing. Also smartphone players might make mistakes due to the small size of the action buttons. Playing on an iPad gives you the advantage of a larger size screen.
All in all, though, the apps are far superior to most of the competition. You are not likely to be disappointed using them.
|Poker site name||PokerStars Mobile|
|Years in operation||9+ years|
|Number of games||13|
|Games offered||Limit and No Limit Hold 'Em, Omaha and Omaha Hi-Lo, Seven Card Stud, Seven Card Stud 8 or Better, 5 Card Draw, 2-7 Draw, Razz, HORSE, Badugi, Zoom Poker (a fast fold game)|
|Number of players||50 million +|
All new real money players at PokerStars, including mobile players, are entitled to a Welcome Bonus. The bonus consists of a 100% match of the first deposit up to $600. However, if the first deposit is less than $600, the player has the option to make two more deposits within 60 days and still get the full bonus amount. Of course, you can always deposit less money and take a smaller bonus.
The bonus is cleared by collecting VIP Player Points (VPPs) by contributing to the rake in ring games or paying the fees for buying into tournaments. During the course of your play, the pending bonus is released in $10 increments. A total of 300 VPPs is needed for each $10 increment to be released. You have four months to clear the bonus in its entirety. Players who already have an existing account with PokerStars are not entitled to a new Welcome Bonus for downloading the mobile app.
Our PokerStars mobile review found that there is no shortage of banking options at the site, which is exactly what you would expect considering that its players come from all over the world. Most of these methods can be used for both deposit and withdrawal. For your added convenience, you can do your banking directly from the mobile app.
Deposit limits vary with the account and with the deposit method. If you wish, you can also restrict your own weekly deposit limits. Withdrawals are usually processed within 72 hours, after which the time for the money to become available varies, but with most methods is within 3 to 10 business days. Regardless of banking method, advanced encryption technology is your assurance that all of your personal information and financial transactions are completely protected.
Cash Games and Tournaments
On some sites, mobile players can only play one game-hold ‘em and more often than not for micro to low stakes only. PokerStars mobile players have no such restrictions. If low stakes limit or no limit hold ‘em is what you want to play, fine, but if not, you have the same broad selection of games and stakes to choose from as PokerStars players logged on to their home computers. There are also both ring games and tournaments that don't require any real cash at all because they use play money.
If you would like to play for real money, clicking on the quick seat button will enable you to make your selection and get seated at a table right away. There are three steps to the process.
- Select the game, limit, or tournament where you wish to play.
- Define your search. Choose the variation you want -e.g., Fixed Limit or No Limit for cash games or Freeroll or Satellite for Tournaments.
- Pick a limit-Micro, Low, Medium, or High
Besides all of the usual varieties of poker you can play on this site, PokerStars offers another unique game called Zoom Poker. The game is similar to Fast Forward Poker offered by PokerStars but even faster. As soon as you fold your hand, which you can even do out of turn, you are immediately moved to a new table. The format is offered in both ring games and tournaments, including heads-up games.
Our PokerStars mobile review found that, no matter what game you are playing, and no matter what time, there is always plenty of traffic on this site. While usually this is a good thing, during some peak times like during the Sunday Million Dollar Guaranteed Tournament, there can be so much traffic that play on the site is slowed down.
The "Sunday Million" taking place every Sunday at 14:30 ET, is, in fact, the world's biggest weekly poker tournament, with not only a $1M guaranteed prize pool, but also a first place prize of $150,000. You can either win your way in via satellite or buy in directly for $215.
If you want to get a little practice before the big tournament, you can also play in the Sunday Warm Up, a $500,000 guaranteed tournament with a first place prize of $70,000+. This tournament takes place at 11 a.m. and also allows you to either buy in directly for $215 or qualify by satellite.
Besides these two tournaments, you will find a full schedule of smaller tournaments on Sunday and every other day. Sit and Gos are also very popular.
You might think, based on how big this site is, that it would be filled with fish, but that is not really the case. The competition will be soft at the lowest levels, but as you move up in stakes, the competition becomes tougher. Even what you might consider fairly low stakes, for example, $1/$2 no limit games, are filled with serious grinders, making these games slim pickings for beginners. The stellar reputation of the site, along with the outstanding tournament schedule, including higher buy-in tournaments, also attracts many pros and semi-pros. The biggest tournaments, like the Sunday Million, still appeal to a lot of recreational players.
Loyalty Rewards, Promotions, and Customer Support
Regular players at PokerStars are amply rewarded for their play. The VIP points you accumulate can be used in a variety of ways: for tournament tickets, for cash rewards, or to make purchases such as poker gear, accessories, and collectibles in the VIP store. In addition, there are seven different VIP levels depending on how many VIP points you have accumulated. The levels are Bronze, Chrome, Silver, Gold, and Platinum Star, and then Supernova and Supernova Elite. As you move up in level, you earn player points at a faster rate, and get bigger bonuses, exclusive invitations, and many other benefits.
Special PromotionsPokerStars has many special promotions year round, including cash prizes, freerolls, qualifying satellites for seats to big events, and a lot more. Here is a sample of some of the Exciting Extras being offered now.
- Carnival of Tournaments: PokerStars runs many multi-million dollar prizepool tournaments throughout the year, to celebrate numerous different milestones.
- Qualifying satellites for UK and Ireland Poker Tour, Norwegian Championship and other big live events
- Battle of the Planets: This is a Sit and Go Leaderboard competition. The various Sit and Gos are divided, based on buy-in range into eight groups, each named after a different planet. For example, Mercury tournaments cost $1-$2.99, while Jupiter tournaments cost $300+. Each planet division has its own weekly prize pool, divided into two leaderboards, a Low Orbit one for casual recreational players and a High Orbit one for high volume players. Everyone is on equal footing and you only compete against those whose bankroll and experience matches yours.
- Multi-Table Tournament Leaderboards: Every time you place in the top 15% of a regular MTT, you are awarded tournament leaderboard points based on buy-in, number of entries, and position of finish. High ranking players on the weekly, monthly, and yearly leaderboards win prizes.
- Big Stacks Play Money Tournaments: Mammoth stacks would be a more accurate description since the starting stacks range from 100K to 1M chips. But it is only play money!
- PokerStars Backstage: Opportunity to win tickets to see your favorite bands in live shows by playing in free Backstage tournaments
- PokerStars Women's Club: Exclusive women's only tournaments for play money or low buy-ins
While the site does a very good job of explaining everything clearly, from time to time you may have questions or concerns with which you need help. Customer Support can be accessed 24/7 in many languages, but by email only. There is no live chat or phone support.