Sunday November 27,2011 : First Full Tilt, now InstaDeal…Pokerstars next?
The popularity of Full Tilt Poker's "first to market" concept of fast online poker, Rush Poker, appears to have motivated other companies to offer similar services despite threatening noises from FTP that it has applied for patents.
The concept behind the popular trend is to deliver a fast game for players in a hurry by moving them to a new table immediately after folding a hand.
A former senior executive with the Entraction network, Per Hildebrand, is driving the InstaDeal initiative in the field, unfazed by FTP claims of exclusivity, according to the poker information portal Pokerasi.
Hildebrand apparently feels that the FTP public claims to patent protection are unenforceable, basing his judgement on extensive legal consultation that suggests that FTP only met one of three criteria necessary to be granted a patent on its Rush Poker concept.
Hildebrand has therefore pushed ahead with his own InstaDeal Poker Network initiative, targeting online, mobile and terminal operators. Interestingly, he claims that the elephant in the room, Pokerstars, is also considering its options
“PokerStars has suggested launching something similar and no one really knows what they’re up to but we gather that they’re looking into the legals. In all honesty I’m a little surprised that they haven’t launched anything yet,” Hildebrand told the poker portal.
Full Tilt launched its first Rush Poker mobile client for Android in January 2010, identifying the mobile player as the most likely demographic for speedy poker.
Hildebrand revealed that although his original plan had been to build liquidity through online activity before going after the terminal market, the rise in smartphone usage has persuaded him that the mobile environment was also ideal for the "very good solution" that InstaDeal has developed.
The terminal market still features in InstaDeal's plans, Hildebrand revealed, noting that he was currently working on an Italian possibility.
The independent poker information site Pokerscout has posted positive reviews on the InstaDeal product, noting that it is similar in format to Rush Poker although it lacks the ability to have several entries in the same player pool. However, players can open several different pools at once, it notes.
"The software is pretty fast. A few people seem to not like the bet-slider but if you understand that it was designed for ipads, tablets and pub gaming machines then the design makes sense," the review observes, going on to point out that the rake is "a little high at micro-stakes (6% with usual cap) but currently this is more than compensated for by very good bonus/rakeback deals designed to attract regular players to the site."
"It might not be operable in more than one table at a time on mobile, but for speed players that’s often enough,” it concludes, opining that both support and cashout processes are fast and efficient.
According to the InstaDeal site the software is fully available to operators: “This unique Texas Hold’em and Omaha software is available as an online network to be integrated directly into an existing back office to perfectly complement a sports betting, casino or poker offering.”