Poker rooms with the fewest disconnects
Our homepage article deals with how disconnects are created, and which poker rooms have the fewest disconnects.
Unlike with live playing at a casino, online poker players have numerous opportunities around the clock and 365 days a year. Whether a cash game or tournament, at a good poker room, there are plenty of choices at any time of the day.
However, one of the most unpleasant side-effects of online poker is getting disconnected - meaning that the connection between the poker software and the server poker website's server breaks down. Every online poker player knows this phenomenon - just when you have a good hand and money in the pot, suddenly the game freezes and you get timed out, your hand gets folded! The poker sites usually give you a few seconds to stay in the hand, but often such a disconnect leads to a forcible fold.
There is hardly anything that is more frustrating than this lottery, and especially so because it often seems that disconnects always occur when you have AA or KK. To avoid such frustration, it is, of course, important to know which poker website has the least disconnects.
What are the reasons for disconnects?
- One reason may be an unstable poker software (the so-called poker client). Smaller providers and newer poker rooms sometimes use poorly programmed or "beta" software products, which can lead to interruptions despite a good internet connection.
- Another reason could be your internet provider. If your connection breaks often, you should think about switching to another provider. An alternative solution would be to install the mobile app the poker site provides on your mobile phone and to get an independent mobile internet package. In case of a sudden disconnect on your laptop, you could use your mobile phone when you get disconnected and finish the hand or the tournament via the mobile app. Hint: make sure to update the mobile app before you get started!
- Server problems on the side of your online poker room - this is where the player has the least influence, unfortunately at the same time the most frequent reason for disconnects. A good poker room always has multiple servers handling the games, and in case one of the servers fails the affected players are simply redirected to another server. When many players are affected, the process of redirecting them may take longer, and players may end up offline for a longer period. This phenomenon can be experienced particularly often with poker websites which have a lot of players. This is the reason why market leader Pokerstars is one of the worst sites when it comes to frequency and duration of disconnects.
However, many poker rooms are targeting specific markets or regions. Therefore, player presence is stronger or weaker at certain times of the day. At the same time, poker rooms adapt the daily tournament schedule to the time zone of their main markets by setting the starting time of the most attractive tournaments accordingly. But this kind of focus on a particular market also means that the poker room would be using more servers in the respective country or countries. This in turn means shorter distances and fewer disconnects!
So if you want to play online poker from, let's say, the UK, you should play at an online poker room that targets the UK market. Among other aspects, who wants to get up in the middle of the night to be able to play the big tournaments?
Which poker rooms are the best for players from the UK and the Unites States?
Of all reputable, larger rooms, Bet365 and 888 Poker are the most recommendable ones for UK players. Both have excellent and stable software, a great game offer at cash games and tournaments, and reliable server architecture.
Unfortunately, those rooms are not an option for US poker players due to the US legislation - see below to find our recommendations for rooms that accept US residents!
Of course disconnects will never be completely excluded - technology will fail from time to time. That is exactly why 888 Poker has introduced a function that we personally consider to be optimal to guarantee a fair game: the "Pause Function" for their tournaments. As soon as it is determined that there is something wrong with one of the servers, the entire tournament will be stopped until the problem is solved. This usually does not take too long, and the advantage is that one group of players stays disconnected, while the other players can continue to play!
Especially the tournaments with buy-ins around $50 are very attractive at 888 Poker, with still manageable participant numbers.
Currently, 888 Poker offers a free starting bankroll of $88 for players from the UK, as long as they register with 888 via this bonus link. This promotion is ideal to build a bankroll! You get an additional $ 400 bonus if you deposit own money later.
At Bet365, as we can tell from personal experience, you will only very rarely experience disconnect problems. You do not get a free bankroll, but Bet365 is better suited for cashgame lovers (compared to 888), especially as far as higher limits are concerned. Also the competition is somewhat softer there. In addition there is an offer for sports betting and casino that is second to no other provider worldwide. Registered customers can even (legally!) watch live streams of different sports event at the Bet365 website - and place various in-game bets during the matches and events. Bet365 also has a cash-out option for your bets, which means you can sell your bet back to Bet365 before the match ends. Those are two features that only a few sports betting sites offer.
Best sites for US residents
At the moment, the best option for poker players from the US would be Betonline - there are really not many alternatives and those who do exist do not have the best of reputations. Click here to check out Betonline.
What about Pokerstars and Full Tilt?
These two poker rooms were once the most popular poker rooms, and Pokerstars is still the largest site in the World.
Nevertheless, we strongly advise against these two. Since the takeover by the Amaya Group, both providers have changed in such a dramatic way that they can only be described as a massive rip-off. The rake was increased so that making a profit at cash games have become increasingly difficult. Initial rakeback deals have now been reduced. Loyalty points have less value now, and when participating in live tournaments such as EPT or LAPT organized by Pokerstars they have been completely canceled, very much to the annoyance of the players.
Both providers are also front runners (in the negative sense) as far as the number of disconnects go. It seems that not enough server capacity has been created for the large amount of players (probably to keep overheads low and thus maximize Amaya's bottom line), even though Pokerstars and Full Tilt have to share the server architecture.
Extremely unethical and almost fraudulent practices in dealing with business partners in the recent past are also strong indicators that those sites cannot be trusted. We strongly recommend you steer clear from Pokerstars and Full Tilt! There are plenty of good alternatives for online poker players.