The Las Vegas land gambling venues deal approximately 11 million hands of poker a day; by comparison, the social networking games developer Zynga is currently dealing an average of 150 million hands of poker a day. The comparison is a startling illustration of the power of the Internet, a medium which Zynga has turned to its advantage big time.
A company spokesman this week revealed that Zynga Poker (formerly Texas Hold’Em) is the number one online poker game on Facebook, where high rollers and amateurs alike play join the action.
“An average day finds Zynga dealing about 150 million hands compared to 11 million hands dealt in Las Vegas,” the spokesman said. “On any day and at any time, Zynga Poker hosts 250 000 concurrent players, making it the world’s largest live casual casino and seating more than 3.5 times the audience of the average NFL stadium.”
The company has enjoyed success with other games, too, quadrupling its monthly users over the last six months, making it one of the fastest growing applications on the Internet.
In April 2009, Zynga had 30 million monthly active users playing its games, and since then the number has grown to 129 million. Every day, approximately 34 million users worldwide play Zynga games according to Developer Analytics. Zynga estimates its current monthly unique visitors are at 70 million, and the company boasts it has four of the top 10 games on Facebook:
“The rise in social gaming reflects the immense popularity of Facebook and the need for people to connect, play and express themselves with others,” said Mark Pincus, founder and CEO of Zynga. “While it is still early in social gaming, the success of our games with the user community underscores the sheer size and potential of this new movement which will finally let fun become the biggest way people interact.”
Whilst Facebook is Zynga's biggest outlet, it's games are also available on MySpace, Bebo, Hi5, Friendster, Tagged, Yahoo! and the iPhone. The company is funded by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, IVP, Union Square Ventures, Foundry Group, Avalon Ventures, Pilot Group, Reid Hoffman and Peter Thiel, and is headquartered in San Francisco.