The big story in the U.S. regulated market is the lack of performance by poker sites. New Jersey only rakes around $2 million at the poker tables each month. Nevada hovers around $500,000 monthly. Delaware can only manage about $20,000 per month in rake, which is even more disappointing since it now networks with WSOP.com in Nevada.
Poker vs Casino Trends
Poker trends down every month in all three states. This started in 2014. Five poker networks opened in New Jersey. That is down to three. While poker has not done well in the country’s three regulated online gaming states, casino revenue has never been better.
Casino games are only available in New Jersey and Delaware. New Jersey online casinos win about $18 million per month. Delaware wins about $200,000 per month.
In June 2016, New Jersey won $18 million from online casino gamblers. Delaware won $200,000. Both states have been trending up in terms of handle and win. This is the complete opposite of poker.
Why are casino games performing so well versus poker?
There is a saying in online poker that liquidity breeds more liquidity. Online poker needs a large pool of players. The more tables a player sees when logging in, the more likely he is to play. The higher the number of entries into a poker tournament, the more likely a player is to join.
Casino games do not have this problem. A casino player has no idea how many players are at a site. It does not matter because no other players are needed for one to enjoy slots, video poker or table games.
In New Jersey, this gives players more options. There are only three poker sites in New Jersey. They are both about the same size. Once a player hits those deposit bonuses, there is less motivation to stay in the game.
Poker players may be more inclined to drive to Borgata in Atlantic City to find high limit games as opposed to sticking with the micro limits available online. Higher buy-in tournaments may be found in Atlantic City compared to its online room or WSOP.com.
There are 15 online casinos in New Jersey. All but two of these offer a first deposit bonus. Two of these bonuses are the best in the online casino world. This encourages players to give action. The two sites that do not have deposit bonuses return losses to players during the first week of action.
Casino games also appeal to more potential players than poker. Poker rooms only hold a tiny fraction of the number of players in a casino. Slot players find many of the same games online than they find in Atlantic City. The video poker pay tables are better at casino sites than they are in Atlantic City. The table game selection is better. Blackjack odds are better as any game with a minimum bet of $1 or more pays 3-2. Roulette only has one zero at most New Jersey sites, compared to double zero in Atlantic City. Some hard-to-find games like Caribbean Stud and Four Card Poker can be found at many New Jersey casino sites.
Offshore Casino Games Less Appealing Than Poker
Some online poker sites that operate offshore without a license still accept New Jersey and
Delaware players. These sites are larger than the available regulated poker platforms in these states. This encourages some serious players to continue giving action to offshore sites. They have access to larger tournaments and higher limit cash games.
There is no reason for a casino player to give action to offshore sites. There are often deposit and withdrawal fees involved. There is also no guarantee that winnings will ever get paid by unlicensed sites. New Jersey sites use better software than ones still available to U.S. players by offshore sites. The promotions are far better in New Jersey than they are at offshore casino sites.
Not Same Situation in Delaware
Delaware’s online casino software is the worst in the world. It has just 16 slot games, one video poker title and two table games. None of the slots are familiar to live casino players. The table games are just blackjack and roulette. This may explain why New Jersey wins 100 times more with just 10 times the population.
It seems likely Delaware could improve if it were to roll out better games. A new agreement with Caesars may make that happen. It has yet to go live.