'' Goodbye iPoker after 350k hands
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In the light of recent events on iPoker I have decided to write a blog to clear my head and discuss my future in online poker. Pardon any spelling and grammar mistakes - English is not my first language.

iPoker decided to split its network in two on September 3. The new iPoker1 consists of the small and medium sized poker skins where I am currently playing on PokerPlex24. It has been claimed that most of the grinders are playing on the iPoker1 skins. The iPoker2 skins primarily consist of recreational players and it is exclusive to the five biggest poker rooms on the network. Read more about the iPoker split.

My understanding of the split is that small stake poker players referred to as regulars (regs) and grinders are being separated from the main ‘fish tank’ on iPoker. Making a living as a cash game player is already harder now than ever and this new policy is making matters worse.


Player pool dropped 50%

In a shocking pace following countries have been eliminated from the general player pool in the past few years:

Italy 2008 - AAMS Italian Poker Ring Fence

France 2010 – ARJEL French Poker Ring Fence

USA 2011 – Black Friday (Partly in 2006 - UIGEA)

Spain 2012 – info coming soon

The cash game player pool has dropped 50% from January 2010 to July 2012.


$40,000 rake paid

According to Hold'em Manager 2, which is quite accurate, I have paid roughly $40,000 in rake this year in 350,000 hands. My profits are insignificant so I mainly rely on PokerPlex24’s VIP program that gives me a monthly income regardless whether I win or lose.

Let me clarify what $40,000 means to me as a NL200 player. $40,000 is 200 buy-ins on $1/$2 tables. The buy-in is the amount of money I bring to the table when I play. So when I play nine tables I have min. $1800 in play. If I break even after playing 350,000 hands it means I have won $0 but actually would have made $40,000 if there was no rake. I am fully aware that there will always be rake I am simply trying to explain how much you have to win just to break even.

(Y: $50,000, X: 350,000 hands)

On average I pay 11 cent per hand. The €/£ tables make the rake go up from 10 cent to 11 cent equivalent to 5.5 bb/100 hands.  You have to multiply this number with 4.50 since it is the average number of grinders at the tables, which shows that the average 1.50 fish at the tables have to lose $173,250 for the grinders to break even!  

If six players pay 10 cent per hand the poker room’s gross income is $210,000 after 350k hands. After the $210,000 temporarily is removed from the poker ecology I have to win money from the remaining funds in play at the tables (if there is any).


New plans emerge

Due to the lack of action on iPoker1 I am forced to find a new poker room. On top of that when I consider how tough the games are and the fact that the majority of the large poker countries have vanished from the player pool it is hard to have a positive outlook on online poker however I am not quitting yet!

The past two months I have been working on a new project. I am in the process of setting up a company to start new adventures. In July and August I have mainly been playing poker from 9 am - 2 pm and then worked on the project during the day and evening.

I have started swimming in the morning followed by a poker session. This routine is no longer possible on iPoker1 since there are almost no games anymore. I have kept a log of how many full 6max tables there have been since the split and it is shocking to see the result.

I think most grinders will move from iPoker1 to iPoker2 or leave iPoker all together. I do not intend to switch iPoker skin to play on iPoker2. Besides the fact that only two iPoker skins have Danish license I have decided iPoker1 & iPoker2 is not for me. I have been very happy with PokerPlex24 (now on iPoker1) and I might play there from time to time but my majority of hands will be played elsewhere. I have no choice if I want to keep my daily routines and make a decent living.

I will soon make a news article about the network changes and how it affects the industry as a whole rather than me as a player. In my coming article I will give my critical views on iPoker and explain why Playtech is taking such drastic actions.