Overview – BetOnline is currently the third largest online poker site that accepts US players, and the most sizeable one that has no state restrictions.  A major player in the online gambling scene for over a decade, the company launched its online poker room in 2010 which benefited highly from the marketing efforts of its creators, but soon became plagued by scandal as a result of its suspect connections to the Action Poker Network.  BetOnline was not entirely forthright about its link to the Action Poker Network; it claimed to be part of the new Hero Poker Network but observers soon discovered that BetOnline was indeed on Action Poker, later renamed Chico Poker.  The company therefore did not prevent players from logging into BetOnline and Action Poker simultaneously – leading to accusations of cheating and dishonest play.  Regardless, the company has grown in popularity for that massive number of games it holds at all hours of the day and its attractive bonuses.

The Competition is mainly concentrated at the lower end of the stakes scale, with the high stakes scene almost nonexistent.  There are a sizeable number of new players and games are fairly decent.  Great spots are to be found at almost every buy-in level and players are required to table select as much as other sites, which is a welcome change.

Cash Games are varied, with constant action in the No Limit Texas Hold’em games.  Some Pot Limit Omaha action may be found during peak hours. Sit and Gos start at a few cents and run up to $11 nearly 24 hours a day, with most being No Limit Texas Hold’em, although  a few are Pot Limit Omaha.

Tournaments are offered as both Multi-Table as well as Sit and Go-style poker.  There are plenty of regular competitions running on BetOnline Poker, although you will have a degree of trouble finding much in the mid-stakes area, but there are numerous low buy-in events instead. BetOnline offers a $3,500 tournament leaderboard and players are able to earn Player Option Points at a rate of one for every $.10 in contributed rake paid.  The site offers over $250,000 in guaranteed tournaments prizes weekly, with the biggest spreads at the weekends. There is also a $22 No Limit Texas Hold’em tournament with a $10k guaranteed prize pool every Saturday at 7pm and Sunday at 6pm (both Eastern Time Zone).

Bonuses are offered, with a 200% bonus up to $1,000 with a player’s first deposit. It is released in five advances and expires after 120 days (so basically, an $1,000 bonus will require $6,523 in rake paid to clear the entire amount. Players have 120 days to clear the entire bonus. Any portion not yet released will then expire). There is also a Bad Beat Jackpot every Monday at select tables.  Players that make a four of a kind on select days will be able to receive a $40 bonus.

Software is Windows and Mac compatible and thoroughly user-friendly, despite some significant glitches when the site was first launched, but these were efficiently ironed out.  BetOnline isn’t overly showy but tends to be speedier and more reliable than many of its competitors.  Players are able to re-size and play several tables at once, check hand history and flick between two room styles.

Banking with regard to bitcoin is functional – bitcoin will arrive in about one day with a charge of 2% of the withdrawal request.  Players outside the U.S. are charged a $20 fee to withdraw to e-wallets, however this fee is waived one time each month if the cashout is requested on a Friday. Bitcoin withdrawals are processed in amounts up to $3,500. Players outside the U.S. are able to receive Bitcoin withdrawals on the same terms as U.S. players, as well as cashouts by Neteller and Skrill.

Customer Service is available via telephone, email and live web chat. Contacting live support is instantaneous and the operators are friendly, helpful and informative. In contrast to this, email response is somewhat sluggish.

Why join? BetOnline Poker has effectively created a site that has good promos, attractive bonuses and workable software, as well as quick withdrawals. While some players may remain unforgiving about the site’s past misdemeanours, the majority of customers can look past it and enjoy a now reputable online poker site. What all players will inevitably agree on is that BetOnline is convenient to deposit to and payouts are as fast as one would expect.