The latest online poker cash player rankings from pokerscout.com reveal alarming trends for both PartyPoker and Full Tilt Poker, as they continue to lose ground not only to market leader PokerStars, but to more immediate threats in their midst as well.
For Party Poker, though they’ve leapt over Full Tilt into second place in the rankings, they’ve done so by virtue of leaking less players than Full Tilt. As we reported two weeks ago, PartyPoker was one of the first sites to implement fair play technology, a move designed to keep casual players playing for longer, and more money in play, and thus more money spilling into the PartyPoker coffers. The grinders who the move hurts the most have apparently moved on to other “unfair” playing fields, as PartyPoker has seen a noticeable drop in cash players since word of their initially clandestine fair play policy broke.
Whether the decrease in cash players is actually harming PartyPoker’s overall take is unknown. It will also be interesting to see if the numbers correct themselves over the coming weeks as more casual players take the place of the departing grinders, in the knowledge that they have a place to play online poker where they won’t be picked apart by a pack of pros.
For Full Tilt, there’s less ways to spin their decline in a positive way. What initially looked like a return to form upon the site’s re-opening, as it immediately jumped comfortably into the second position with 8,000 daily cash players, now appears to be nothing more than old players returning to collect their balances and bid a final adieu to the site. FT’s cash players immediately slumped 20 percent in its second week back last November, and have fallen by another 50 percent in total since then.
The winner in all of this (aside from PokerStars, who continues to win the Internet when it comes to online poker) appears to be the iPoker Network. iPoker is steadily closing in on PartyPoker for second with 3,300 daily cash players last week, and recent additions to their network of poker sites in the form of Dusk Till Dawn, and the future addition of Ladbrokes from Microgaming should all serve to keep iPoker steadily rising while others fall.
Rounding out the top 5 of this week’s rankings was 888Poker, with just under 2,500 cash players on their network daily throughout the week. PokerStars leads the way with 23,600, nearly equaling the combined total of every other poker site and network listed in the traffic report.