Online Poker Networks and Skins

NetworksThere are hundreds of online poker rooms to choose from, but there’s not as much actual choice as you might think. Many online poker rooms belong to an online poker network, and are often called ‘poker skins’. These online poker sites share the same software and players. Although some online poker networks allow their skins some flexibility in the promotions that they offer, they are essentially the same. You could easily be sat at a 9 handed table on one online poker room and be playing against 8 other players from completely different online poker rooms or ’skins’.

What’s the point of online poker networks?

An online poker room isn’t going to succeed without a certain ‘critical mass’ of poker players. Unlike casino games where you play against the house, a poker room needs real players, and plenty of them. Poker networks are ideal for the providers because by joining a network they can instantly have player traffic, even if they don’t ‘own’ the players or directly profit from them. They’re also ideal for poker players, since more players provide a greater choice of games.

Do all online poker rooms belong to networks?

No, the 3 biggest online poker rooms, Poker Stars, Full Tilt Poker, and Party Poker are independent. They are very big poker sites which don’t need to be on a network because they have enough players.

How many online poker networks are there?

There are a number of different online poker networks, some good, and some bad. Below is a list of the most well known poker networks;

Cake Poker Network
Cake Poker Network

The Cake Poker Network is a U.S. friendly network with a growing number of online poker rooms. They are an excellent choice, highly recommended.

Windows CompatibleNot Mac CompatibleNot Linux CompatibleAccepts US Players

Best poker room software
Learn poker from the pros

Merge Poker Network
Merge Gaming Network

The Merge Gaming Network is a U.S. friendly network which is growing in size, due to its excellent software and value added poker games.

Windows CompatibleNot Mac CompatibleNot Linux CompatibleAccepts US Players

Cool software & features
Lots of soft competition

iPoker Network

The iPoker Network is the largest online poker network and is the home of major online poker rooms such as Sun Poker, Winner, and Bet 365.

Windows CompatibleNot Mac CompatibleNot Linux CompatibleDoesn't Accept US Players

Excellent promotions
Good customer service

Cereus Network
Cereus Poker Network

The Cereus Network is the home for Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet, which have been hit by cheating scandals. However, they remain popular.

Windows CompatibleMac CompatibleLinux CompatibleAccepts US Players

Offer unique features
Plenty of added value