his means, unlike with the iPhone product, it is not restricted to the three markets of Austria, France and the UK. There are no major differences between the iPhone and Android versions, both of which only allow for single-table play, although the new product does allow players to pre-select their actions at the table.
Fredrik Kjell, Ongame’s head of poker, told eGaming Review that the network hopes to roll out the product with more licensees later this year, although he was unable to disclose any names at this stage. He also revealed that the network’s developers are “constantly keeping an eye on the tablet market” with the potential for multi-tabling on such devices in mind.
He expressed his confidence that the removal of restrictions on the number of markets will increase player numbers, as will the shutdown of Full Tilt - home to the only other real-money poker product on Android devices.
“If you like playing poker on your phone you have no real alternative to our product and I can see more people playing with Ongame, particularly now we have the Android client which is open to everyone. It’s not even been submitted to the Android marketplace [which means] it’s more or less global for the dot.com environment,” he said.
Currently the Android client only allows no-limit, pot-limit and limit hold’em, with maximum stakes of us$ 3/us$ 6, us$ 5/us$ 5 and us$ 5/us$ 10 respectively, and Kjell believes this suits the casual players at whom it is targeted.
“For me it’s a pure casual player product, primarily because you can only play one table,” he explained, adding that “We’re looking at a lot of different things right now - for example, we’ve only got cash games at the moment and not tournaments.”
He was hopeful the impending sale of the Ongame network would not have an adverse impact on the product, which he described as “an Ongame-driven development [with] an Ongame team”. “If the new owner wants to change the strategy then anything can happen, but I’m very enthusiastic about the mobile product so far and don’t see any reason why we wouldn’t keep developing our mobile product,” Kjell explained.
With new licensees expected this autumn, and a continued drive towards encouraging more network members to go mobile, Kjell clarified that some members were likely to opt solely for the Android product, some just for the iPhone product, and others for both.
“It depends really on where they have their core business,” he said. “Several of the bigger operators will elect to go for both, although those with focus away from the three markets where we have an iPhone product might just go for Android.”