In the past, video poker was always played on large and cumbersome looking machines in Las Vegas casinos. They were either stuck to the bar, or on machines the size of a slot on the gaming floor.
You certainly couldn’t take video poker games with you. Until now that is!
It’s 2020 and thankfully technology has moved on. Mobile casinos and video poker apps mean that now you can pick up your phone and play real money video poker from anywhere, at any time. The only problem is deciding where to play, and which casino is best.
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How To Play Video Poker On A Mobile Device
I’m going to assume here that you’ve played video poker before, so you know the rules and how the game actually works. If not, don’t worry. Our complete guide to video poker will tell you everything you need to know, so check that out first.
The good news is that video poker games adapt really well to pretty much any modern mobile device. In fact it’s ideal for smartphone and tablet, due to the nature of the game.
Video poker has always involved a player betting against the computer, not against other players. So there’s nothing to change in terms of the gameplay. All the developers have needed to do is adapt their video poker games to the smaller screen.
Most mobile video poker games are optimised for landscape mode, so you’ll need to flip your phone over to get the best results. But when you do, it looks great.
As you can see, the display looks exactly like it would on a video poker machine in any casino. You get the pay table at the top, the cards in the middle, and the buttons and stake selection at the bottom.
How Does The Game Work?
Let’s backtrack a little. Before you can actually play real money video poker games on your phone or tablet, there are obviously a few things you’ll need to do first:
- Choose an online casino from the list above
- Open an account (takes just 2 minutes
- Make a deposit if you want to play for real money
- Choose a video poker game to play (there are usually several variations to choose from: Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better etc..)
- Tap the screen to load the game
Most video poker games take just a couple of seconds to load up on your mobile devices if you’re using a data connection (or even faster over wi-fi). Then you’ll see a screen similar to the example above, and you’re ready to play.
The buttons along the bottom of the screen are used to control the video poker game, simply tap them as normal.
How To Play Video Poker
Mobile video poker really is a simple and intuitive game to play. If you’ve ever played video poker casino games in Vegas, then the mobile version is going to seem very familiar to you. If not, you’ll soon pick it up. Here’s what the controls do:
- Stake Buttons – Used to adjust the amount you want to stake on the next hand. Use the + and – buttons to increase or decrease the amount.
- Bet One – Automatically sets the bet to the minimum stake
- Bet Max – Automatically sets the bet to the maximum stake – and also deals. Be aware of this is you’re playing for real money, and be sure not to press this by accident.
- Deal – Deals the cards.
After the initial set of cards are dealt, you have the option to hold one or more cards before the second draw.
Just tap on any card to hold it. Don’t worry if you make a mistake, you can tap again to deselect. If your first draw is a pair or better, the game might hold some cards automatically for you.
When you’re happy, press deal again.
After the second draw, the mobile video poker game will tell you whether you’ve won, and if so, how much. This will also be highlighted on the pay table to confirm.
If you do win, you’ll then get two options.
- Collect – If you get a winning hand, press this to bank your winnings.
- Double – Alternatively, you can choose to stake your winnings on a double or nothing bet called the Double Bonus feature. This is a bonus game where the dealer draws a card and you have to select one that has a higher value. If you do, your winnings are doubled. If not, you lose.
That’s basically all there is to it! It’s a simple yet fun online casino game which is quick and easy to play on your mobile. And with so many different video poker titles to choose from, you’ll never get bored of playing!
Advantages Of Playing Video Poker On Mobile
There are plenty of reasons why so many people choose to play mobile video poker. It’s actually a much better bet than playing at a brick and mortar casino. Here are just a few of the main advantages.
- Convenience – Play video poker games instantly from anywhere at any time.
- Fun – If you’ve played before, you’ll know that video poker is one of the most fun casino games you can play.
- Payouts – You get regular payouts, with the potential for some big wins. A Royal Flush can pay up to 4000 x your stake, depending on the game version.
- Variety – Speaking of which, there are lots of different game variations available.
- Play For Free – Most of the best video poker casinos offer all their games on free play. Test them out before deciding to play with real money.
Playing video poker on your phone is the ideal way to pass the time on commutes to and from work, at the bus stop, in waiting rooms, during an ad break on TV or in any number of day to day situations.
Popular Video Poker Variations
One of the great things about video poker games is that there are so many different variations to try. Each one has its one unique twist to keep players interested.
Below, I’ve listed some of the most popular video poker variations which you can expect to find at the mobile casinos we recommended above. These are all available in free play or real money games, so you can always “try before you buy.”
Jacks or Better
Jacks or Better is one of the oldest video poker variants, and remains one of the best known and most popular. You’ll find single and multi-hand versions of the game at most online casinos.
As the name suggests, the idea is to get a pair of jacks or better. This is the lowest hand that pays out. But if you look at the pay table, there are much bigger returns available for better hands, with a Royal Flush paying the jackpot.
In the Deuces Wild game, a deuce (which is another name for a 2) is a wildcard. This means it can be substituted for any other card, whichever is most advantageous to your hand.
With wildcards in play, it’s obviously easier to get better hands in this version of video poker. That’s why the lowest paying hand in Deuces Wild is 3 of a Kind rather than a pair. It is much easier to get one though, so the game still pays out quite frequently.
All American Video Poker
This is one of the more popular video poker games in the USA, which is quite similar to Jacks or Better in many ways. All American Video Poker pays out even money on high pairs (of jacks or better, would you believe).
The returns on a Straight Flush and 4 of a Kind are much higher than in other versions, but it has a smaller maximum payout.
Joker Poker pays out on pairs of Kings or better. In the Joker Poker game, the Joker is included in the pack, and it acts as a wildcard. It’s quite rare to draw one, but when you do it gives you a much better probability of getting a high paying hand.
Which Variation Should I Choose?
These are just a few of the video poker games you’ll come across when you play at any of the mobile casinos we’ve recommended. It’s well worth playing a few on demo mode to decide which versions you prefer, before you start with real money play.
If you’re really not sure where to start, I’d recommend Jacks or Better or Deuces Wild first. Try them in single hand mode first, before you move to the 2-4 hand variations.
Honestly, it will only take you a few minutes to get the hand of each version. One of the best aspects of video poker games is that they’re really easy to play. There are no complicated rules to remember, and while there is some video poker strategy you can learn, it really doesn’t make a massive difference to your return or your enjoyment of the game.
Video Poker Apps vs Mobile Browser Play
When you have chosen a mobile casino to real money play video poker at, you may be given the option to download their casino app.
Not every casino has an app. In fact, these days the trend is more towards playing through your mobile browser. The reason for this is that most modern games are developed as HTML5, which means they are specifically designed to work in browsers of all sizes, including mobile and tablet.
Game developers such as NetEnt, Microgaming and RealTime Gaming are all focusing on HTML5 games for all of their new releases. In fact the older Flash technology is being phased out now.
This means that downloadable casino apps are becoming redundant due to this change in technology, and many casinos are deciding not to continue with them, or not to develop them in the first place.
However, there are some real money casinos that do still offer video poker apps as well as browser games, and in these cases you’ll have a choice of which to use.
One advantage of video poker apps is that you can launch them directly from a shortcut on your home screen.
Video poker apps also allow the developer to send push messages (for example, to notify you of special offers). They also (sometimes) support fingerprint login so you may not need to remember or save your username and password.
However, if you choose to play video poker games through your browser, you won’t have to worry about downloading or updating any software. There’s no need to go searching through Google Play or App Store trying to dodge the fake reviews and wondering which apps are actually genuine.
Instead, you can just bookmark the casino website and log in whenever you fancy a game of real money video poker. What could be easier?
It won’t take up any space on your mobile device and, because all games run on the server, there’s no mobile app to update.
Which Is Best?
So now you know the pros and cons of video poker apps vs mobile video poker sites. But which one should you choose? It really comes down to individual preference.
My personal preference these days is to play online casino games on my phone or tablet through my mobile browser. I just find it quicker and easier that way, and I don’t really see the benefit of downloading mobile apps when I don’t have to.
I love playing video poker games (especially Deuces Wild, my favourite) but I can do all that without spending hours looking through the App Store, or downloading any extra software to my phone. I have real money accounts with several online casinos (those that score more than 4/5 in our tests) so I just save these to my browser. I get a great video poker experience that way, but with less hassle.
That isn’t to say you shouldn’t download video poker apps if you want to, I just wanted to share the way I do things in case you’re not sure which way to go.
Last Updated on August 11, 2020