November 14, 2023

Online Poker vs Standard Poker - What Is the Difference?

Ethan Lim
Written byEthan LimWriter

Do you want to play some poker but don't feel like going to the casino? Well, you should give online poker a try. Maybe it's the other way around, and you want a more exciting experience than online poker. You can always go to an actual casino and experience an exciting game of poker. 

Online Poker vs Standard Poker - What Is the Difference?

Regardless of your situation, both online poker and standard poker have some differences that may feel like a surprise to anyone shifting from one to the other. To make that transition easier for you, here is a list of all the major differences between online poker and standard poker. 

The Rules of Poker

First up, let's talk about the gameplay differences. Fortunately, the rules of a regular poker game and online poker rules are the same. You will win with particular hands in a game of poker, regardless of whether it is the standard version at the casino or the online version on your computer. 

Basic Gameplay Differences

With that said, there is a difference between both online poker and standard poker in the way you play the actual game. While playing regular poker, you are at an actual poker table inside a casino. Also, you can hold your chips and the cards using your hands in standard poker. To make some moves, you use hand gestures. 

On the other hand, with online poker, you are sitting in the comfort of your own home or any location you prefer. You can be at a hotel, at a party, or in your bed and still be playing a game of online poker. It is probably one of the most attractive features of online poker and also why a ton of people are shifting to online poker from standard poker.

If you want to make a move in a game of online poker, you have to use your mouse and start clicking instead of using hand gestures. You also won't be able to hold the cards in your hand or the chips either. If you want to add more chips to the table, you will have to do that using your mouse as well.

Dealer vs. Software Provider

Another major difference between online poker and standard poker is how the cards get dealt to the players and how they get shuffled. For standard poker, it is the dealer that gives each player their cards. It is also the dealer that shuffles the cards. Some casinos also have tables with shuffling machines that shuffle the cards. 

On the other hand, there is no dealer in online poker, for the most part. The cards are dealt to the players using the software. The cards in a game of online poker don't need any shuffling because online poker uses a random number generator software that generates cards randomly and then assigns cards to all the players. 

Skill Level of Opponents

Since playing a game of online poker is so easy and you can practically do it anywhere as long as you have a laptop or a smartphone and an internet connection, many people have started to shift from standard poker to online poker. 

However, most of the players that made this transition are the ones that play regularly. It makes sense that a poker player that plays poker almost every day would want to shift to playing online because playing poker on a computer is way easier than playing poker in an actual casino every day. 

One of the results of this transition is that online poker games have highly skilled players. You will have to deal with much better opponents while playing online poker. You won't see many players making mistakes in a game of online poker. 

On the other hand, most players at a standard poker table are there to have fun and socialise with other players. Players at poker tables in casinos are much more relaxed, which means it is likely that they will make mistakes. 

For that reason, you will have better odds of winning at a regular poker game, especially if you are playing carefully and avoiding mistakes. 

Availability of Information

As we have already mentioned, you have to be at an actual poker table in a casino to play standard poker, but you can play online poker at your home. So, with online poker, you don't get to see the faces and expressions of the other players because you aren't actually in front of them. 

If you have been playing regular poker for a long time at casinos, you probably focus a lot on the facial expressions of other players to judge whether they are bluffing. While it might not be a major component of a poker player's strategy, it is a valuable piece of information. Many players give off certain expressions while lying, which you can use to your advantage. 

This lack of information is one of the most noticeable differences between regular and online poker. However, this will only be noticeable if you transition from regular to online poker.

Bet Sizes

Since players at a poker table are usually much more laid back than the players at online poker, you will often see much larger bet sizes at a poker table than in online poker. Online poker players are much more serious about the game, and you will rarely see an online open raise size over 3x or 4x. 

On the other hand, when you play standard poker, it is quite common to see an open raise that is as high as 5x or even 7x. In some cases, you might also be able to witness an open raise of 10x, which is almost impossible to see in a game of online poker. 

While some people might not think of this as a big difference, the larger open raised sizes actually make a huge difference in how one would approach the game. Since the open raise is larger in regular poker, you will see a massive difference in the stack sizes once the game progresses. 

Pace of the Game of Poker

One of the major differences anyone transitioning from online poker to standard poker or the other way around will immediately notice is the pace of the game. Standard poker is much slower than online poker.

The thing is, with regular poker, you have dealers that shuffle and distribute the cards. Also, you physically place the chips on the table if you want to raise the bet. Players in regular poker usually have to deal with distractions, like music playing in the background or some other people talking to each other. All of that wastes time, which slows the pace of the game. You can expect no more than 30 hands per hour in standard poker. 

On the other hand, online poker does not have to deal with all of those issues. The cards get dealt to the players with just one click. Also, online poker players have fewer distractions to deal with. All that makes online poker a much faster-paced game, with games regularly exceeding 60 hands per hour.

About the author
Ethan Lim
Ethan Lim

Ethan Lim, a native of the Lion City, is Singapore’s rising star in the domain of online casino guide localization. He masterfully blends his intimate knowledge of local culture with international gaming standards to produce content that resonates deeply with Singaporeans.

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