» Payment Methods

There are some intriguing payment options out there, available for whoever doesn’t feel too comfortable to offer up his credit card online. Poker-mobile.org investigates the weird and wonderful world of mobile poker money.

A World of Words

A mobile poker player’s vocabulary now needs to extend beyond the familiar world of sharks and fish, ring games and sit’n’gos, HUDs and odds checkers. It’s not even enough for us to know the difference between an Ice Cream Sandwich, Gingerbread and iOS, or Air and Flash. The new words we are set to be bombarded with are the lexis of mobile digital wallets (a.k.a. eWallets) and on line poker payments.

Digital wallets are springing up all over the place like bluebells in April. Most of these, such as Pay with Square, are aiming to capture market share in the soon-to-boom mobile-friendly point of sale (POS) economy. However, mobile-optimised epos systems will also have their day in the months that come.

Some of the stranger terms we need to begin to get our heads around are:

  • Bitcoin: a so-called peer-to-peer (P2P) digital currency
  • Skrill: Has Moneybookers reversed evolved into some kind of ocean dwelling plankton?

Bitcoin is currently only offered as payment alternative by Switch Poker. There is a good video explaining how it works on the official website. The software you need to install is free but there are also no-installation Bitcoin wallet alternatives such as Block Chain. The basic idea is to enable people and businesses to pay each other without needing to go through an intermediary such as a bank. Like cash does, hence the term coin. The reality is slightly more complex.

Meanwhile, Moneybookers has rebranded as Skrill and seems to have its eye on the mCommerce prize too. You’ll need a keen eye to spot the differences between mobile-friendly Skrill and Moneybookers, mind. The key change is the introduction of a “1 tap” feature via the Skrill mobile app. You can use Skrill to pay for poker at Switch Poker, bwin and with the PokerStars uk app.

Other popular poker payment methods remain Neteller, Ukash and Paysafecard, as well as Visa and Mastercard credit and debit cards. Most of these methods will work fine for paying for poker via your mobile, even if there isn’t a special app to make it easier to manage your money.

Change is Coming

Poker apps in the future will see other big payment processors trying to go mobile and make it ever easier for poker players to fund their accounts via their phone. Many of the biggest names in online banking are falling over themselves to get a functioning mobile payment method up and running:

  • PayPal mobile poker would be one of the biggest breakthroughs with the potential to seriously shake up the poker app scene. It could do so in the not too distant with technology acquired from Fig Card. The company’s mobile payment apps already let you manage your PayPal account via your phone but, unlike online casinos, so far none of the mobile poker operators are able to accept PayPal payments. Full details on PayPal for Android and iPhone can be found on Google Play and iTunes respectively.
  • Bank account holders may find their bank has already begun offering some form of mobile payment facility. Barclays’ Pingit is one such example. This app enables Barclays’ customers with smartphones to send and receive money using their Android or iPhone handset. The money will be withdrawn from or deposited into the account linked with their mobile number.

Having said all that probably the only certainty about predicting how mobile poker payments will evolve in the future is that it won’t be any of the ways predicted on this page. There are bound to be a few surprises.