With the release of the new iPhone 3G S, poker players are more excited than ever about the robust hardware and internet features of this amazing device. There are many poker resources available with the iPhone, including podcasts, training videos, and other applications.
Accessing the iTunes Store will reveal a ton of programs that mainly focus on playing poker against the computer or other players in a play money format. For many, this is a fun way of satisfying their poker craving on the road or at home, as the application is available for those on the 3G network or connected to the internet via Wifi. Zynga’s Live Poker 40k is one of the most popular iPhone applications and, at $2.99, the price is easy to swallow. In terms of games like this that allow you to play live opponents or a friend in the same room, there are literally too many to mention.
For those of you who like to play at home, a fun application might be Poker Tournament Manager, which will turn your iPhone into a command center for your home game. It organizes buy-ins, blind levels, and even monitors performances from tournament to tournament. This handy application is only $4.99. You can also find a familiar-sounding application called Poker Tracker (not related to the online tracking tool) that allows you to enter in your progress in live games and save it to your phone.
Also, check out three applications from PokerCruncher: Hold’em Odds Quizzer ($1.99), PokerCruncher ($4.99), and Poker Odds Teacher ($0.99). The first application is a slick quiz program that helps test players judge equity ranges in a wide variety of Hold’em situations, both pre- and post-flop. PokerCruncher is basically PokerStove for the iPhone and the Poker Odds Teacher is a great refresher (or introductory) program for learning poker odds.
Podcasts have been all the rage the last few years in getting quality content out to users in a cheap and easy method. Simply record your podcast (either video or audio), submit it free to iTunes, and people will be able to hear your message. Full Tilt Poker offers podcasts that center on tips from the pros. ESPN might have the best podcast around with Phil Gordon and acclaimed columnist Andrew Feldman. The show constantly has A-list guests for insightful and interesting discussion. Sites like PocketFives.com also offer up podcasts related to online poker every week. Since podcasts are almost universally free, they are highly accessible for users.
Many poker training sites including Stox Poker and Deuces Cracked now offer iPhone editions of their popular training videos. Instead of watching the best training money can buy while at your computer, you can load up the video onto your iPhone and watch it on your lunch break at work.
Given that podcasts, training videos, and applications are available, the technology suggests that the iPhone is ready for poker rooms. Any site is free to develop an iPhone application. Cake Poker already has a platform available for the Windows Mobile operating system that lets players play for real money. Since the iPhone 3G (now $99) and the new iPhone 3G S ($199 and $299) both access the speedy 3G internet network for low-end DSL speeds, there’s no doubt that the hardware and internet capabilities can handle an application to allow people to play poker.
The holdup, as evidenced by feedback from Cake Poker software developers on their feedback forums, are the restrictions that Apple places on applications submitted to their store. At this point in time, poker rooms believe that Apple would not approve such an application and, therefore, it isn’t worth the time and resources to build. Once the legal climate is cleared up in the United States, there’s little doubt that all of the major poker rooms would immediately begin production on free iPhone applications to let players battle for real money. In the meantime, we have plenty of wonderful goodies in the iTunes App Store along with videos and podcasts to satisfy our poker bug.