Thursday, October 21, 2010

Poker for Cash on the your Phone

You don’t need to visit a poker blog to know that smart phones have been the single greatest target of innovation in the past five years. The abridged recent history went something like this:

  1. The iPhone is introduced

  2. Blackberry and Nokia are all like “aww, crap”

  3. everyone and their red-headed stepchild release a failed iPhone clone

  4. Google introduces Android

  5. Blackberry and Nokia are all like “aww, crap”

  6. Apple and Google continue to gain in the mobile market while everyone else struggle to hold on.


The buzz word in mobile as of late? “Apps.” There’s an app for nearly everything on iPhone, some of which I have reviewed. The only apps missing are those Apple has arbitrary laws against. One such law? No gambling. That's why I have the Nevada of mobile operating systems; Android has no laws. And finally, it’s paid off.

Full Tilt Poker now has a beta version of its poker software on mobile. Strangely enough, it isn’t an app in the traditional sense. It is a web app. Unfortunately for Apple fan-boys, it is a no-go on the iPhone because it relies on the Steve-Jobs-denied Adobe Flash.

The Full Tilt experience runs as while as any poker game available in the Android Marketplace, which is to say, very well. The controls and customization are considerably stripped down from the PC version. The only missing component to the game play is chat, but really I can’t complain. I know one other Texas Hold’em game for Android that supports chat and sharing the limited screen real estate make the risk of missing the action too high now that actual cash is on the line. Besides, the action moves far too quickly in that the only game supported is Rush Poker. This also is hard to find fault. I doubt I would settle down for an hour or more session on my phone, even if battery life wasn’t a more ominous threat than Phil Ivey joining the table. No, this app was meant to fill time while out and about. For a serious game, the PC is still your ticket.

What would I change? Down the line I’d like more games supported, and yes, even the long-term games. It would be awesome to play an hour plus tournament on my PC, decide I have to take off and continue the endgame on my cell. That’s what I call freedom. Thinking even more outside the box, I’d like a warning before starting a game in a sketchy data zone. Dropping a call is nothing compared to dropping a game. It would also be pretty slick to replace chat with voice chat. However, I know that’s pie -in-he-sky for now considering FTP would have to revamp their whole system, both mobile and desktop for that to happen.

Overall, I’m hellahappy. If you want to try and get in on the beta, your best bet is to private message FTPSean over on the Two Plus Two forums with your Full Tilt handle and device. That is, if your device is one of these:
Acer Liquid Stream S110
HTC Desire
HTC Droid Incredible
HTC Evo 4G
HTC Google Nexus One
HTC Desire HD
Motorola Droid 2
Motorola Droid Pro / Droid 2 World Edition
Motorola Droid X
T-Mobile G2

Get it? Go it? No? Then... demo.