Once hailed as the second largest online poker network in the world, 888poker will certainly not miss the opportunity to launch in Pennsylvania—one of the biggest states in the US and the fifth most populous state with a population of nearly 13 million.
888 is among the top three frontrunners alongside PokerStars, WSOP.com that is expected to go live on July 15. However, it still remains unclear whether 888 has been approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB). GVC Holding’s online poker room, partypoker has also applied to offer igaming in the state, but it has yet to be approved.
Although 888 is lagging behind other online poker operators on a global basis, the brand is considered to be one of the big players in the US market. It is the only online poker room with a license in all three regulated states that have legalized online poker.
888 has a state-wide monopoly on online poker in Delaware where it powers the online poker sites of Delaware Park, Dover Downs and Harrington Raceway. It also works closely with the WSOP.com in New Jersey and Nevada, providing its software platform (Dragonfish) to them as well as partially sharing its player pool through its own brand 888poker NJ.
888 also operates its own brand in New Jersey, partially sharing player pool with WSOP.com. It launched its online poker operations under the All American Poker Network (AAPN) in the Garden State in 2013 through its partnership with Caesars Entertainment.
In December 2018, 888 bought out the remaining 53% stake of All American Poker Network (AAPN) from its joint venture partner Avenue Capital for $28 million, becoming the sole owner of the network. The AAPN was formed in 2013 as a joint venture between 888 and Avenue Capital with the aim to build its online gaming platform in all the US states where online gaming was regulated.
888 has close ties with both Mount Airy and Harrah’s Philadelphia, but it remains to be seen how it plans to offer online poker in the state. Harrah’s Philadelphia is owned by Caesars Entertainment (owner of WSOP.com), and hence it is a natural partner of 888.
However, the company also partnered with Mount Airy in 2015 ahead of online gaming legislation being passed in the state. It currently provides play money casino game titles, and Mount Airy promotes the real money 888casino games in neighboring New Jersey state.
As per the licensing requirements in Pennsylvania, license holders can have as many skins as they want, so there is a possibility that Mount Airy may offer both 888 and PokerStars online casino and poker offerings.
It could also launch a standalone site separate from WSOP.com.
888Poker PA Welcome Bonus
Offering bonuses and free money to new sign-ups is one of the ways online poker rooms incentivize players to play on their sites.
888 has always been quite generous when it comes to offering high valued welcome bonuses. In the New Jersey market, all new players who sign-up get $20 instantly as no deposit bonus via casino money, tournament tickets and cash money.
In addition to the no deposit bonus, players also have the luxury to double their first deposit amount to up to $1500. For example, if a player deposits $500, he/she will be able to play with $1000. Of course, players will have to play real money games and accumulate loyalty points to collect the welcome bonus.
888 will also likely welcome the Pennsylvania players with similar bonuses. Players can also expect to be credited with plenty of freeroll tickets.
888poker PA Software
888 has been in the business for nearly two decades and the company claims its has award-winning software. Its software powers WSOP.com in Nevada and New Jersey and also provides software for Delaware’s three online poker sites.
Recently, the company overhauled its software by launching the next-generation poker platform, Poker 8—which is being billed as the biggest upgrade in more than half a decade.
Poker 8 is a significant improvement to its almost decade old software as it provides its players with a better overall experience including new graphics, animations, sound effects, and various improvements to site functionality.
The new platform is slowly being rolled out to 888’s segregated markets in Europe and is expected to be deployed in New Jersey too. Players in Pennsylvania could also be greeted with this new platform should it go live in the state.
888poker software is available for both Mac and PC users. It is also compatible with the iPad, iPhone and Android devices.
888poker PA Game Offerings
888 offers most of the popular game formats like Hold’em, Omaha as well as 7 Card Stud. Cash games are available at stakes starting from $0.01/$0.02 to as high as $500/$1000.
Tournaments are available in various formats including the very popular Progressive Knockout (PKO) tournaments, rebuys and freezeouts, multi-day MTTs, heads-up, etc.
It also offers exciting and innovative game formats such as SNAP—the operator’s fast-fold variant and BLAST—its lottery-based Sit & Go. In addition to novelty variants, 888 also spreads various types of formats such as bounty tournaments.
Pennsylvania players will have plenty of options as far as game selection is concerned.
888poker PA Promotions
In addition to first deposit and sign-up bonuses, 888 also runs freerolls almost on a daily basis in New Jersey to give a boost to players’ bankrolls. It also runs promotions for cash game players as well as for MTT players. A similar slate of promotions is also expected to be seen in the Pennsylvania market.
888poker PA Rewards
In New Jersey, 888Poker offers a traditional VIP program that emphasizes volume. The more a player plays, the higher the rewards.
Players are automatically enrolled in the VIP program, the moment they play a real-money hand. Players earn Status Points and Reward Points every time they play a tournament, cash game or casino games. In poker, players earn 2 SPs for every dollar attributed in rake.
Currently, 888 has six status starting with the lowest level—Blue and the highest level—Platinum. Blue offers 5% cashback while Platinum offers up to 35%. Players need to earn 20,000 Sps per month to reach the Platinum level.
Players also earn Reward Points as they play which can be converted into cash. The higher the status, the quicker players accumulate Reward Points.
In addition to the cash prizes, 888 also offers dozens of freerolls with up to $4500 in guaranteed prizes just for its Reward members.