Sky Poker Review
Sky poker is a British poker site that runs on its own network. The currency of virtually every transaction will be in Great British Pounds and not dollars. Sky is one of the big names in the United Kingdom when it comes to getting a TV/phone/internet provider. To make an account on Sky Poker you must reside in the United Kingdom as well as have cash out options via British bank account and or debit card.
The software for Sky poker is very basic. So basic that even with the software downloaded to your desktop it feels like you’re playing on a website rather than actual software. There isn’t any timebank and you will only have 15 seconds to act for every decision. This does speed up the games, but for those who multi table or play poker professionally this can make some decisions rushed and sub-optimal performance during the hands can and will happen.
The Sky poker software is also available for both iOS and android so you can play on the go. Beware that the time to act is only 15 seconds and any disconnects will result in your hands quickly folded.
Bonuses and Rakeback
While most sites offer a first deposit bonus of sorts Sky Poker is lacking a bit in this regard. After your first deposit you will receive £10 in tournament tokens and can also receive an additional £40 in tournament tokens if you stake an additional £10 in the cash games. You will be rewarded the £40 in the form of tournament tokens and not cash.
Sky Poker does indeed offer rake back in 4 levels. Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. The rakeback percentage will range from 10% as a Bronze level player and 20% for a Platinum player which is the maximum rakeback Sky Poker will give. Anyone who earns 50 sky points will earn also be eligible for the £1000 free rolls that occur every weekday. For every £1 a player personally contributes in rake they will receive 6 Sky points.
Sky Poker also offers Power Hours where you may earn double the points you normally would during specific hours on specific days, which are all announced on their website and software.
Most of the traffic for cash games and tournaments will take place in the evenings during the week and the afternoons and evenings on the weekend. The Time zone for this will obviously be GMT as almost all players will reside in the UK. I would go as far to say that traffic is virtually dead for small stakes or higher cash games until the evening.
The software is so simple that there isn’t really anywhere for a HUD to gather hands from. There might be some programmers that are able to make a work around, but HUDs as of now, do not work and are against Sky Poker’s terms of service and any accounts caught using one will have their account funds frozen and permanently banned from playing on Sky Poker.
There won’t be a lot of tables running for both cash games and tournaments, in comparison to bigger sites like PokerStars, as this site is a UK only site. Because it is a UK only site there is a higher ratio of recreational players to professionals than a lot of the other sites. There are still ways that professionals not located in the UK can get around this issue with the use of VPNs and using other players’ accounts.
Pros of Sky Poker
Sky Poker is a UK only site so you can deposit, play in Pounds and cash out without any fees when cashing out to a UK debit card
Less pool of professionals and most of the traffic is UK recreational players
Player pool and traffic is smaller than most sites and because of that, customer support is able to handle any issues a lot faster than other sites
There is ongoing rakeback for anyone looking to put in a lot volume. This is a noticeable plus because in the current poker market rakeback is becoming more of a rarity.
Cons of Sky Poker
Not much in terms of first deposit bonus for new players
Low traffic for a good chunk of the day
No timebank and only 15 seconds to act
Sky Poker is only available for people in the UK. Their software is straightforward and features nice clean blue tables. However, the software might be too simple for some. You don't have much time to act for each hand and may find yourself timing out of hands if you are playing more than 1 table. There is not much in terms of bonuses through Sky poker, however because of the harder to use software and the UK exclusive player pool, the games tend to host more recreational players than professionals.
If you’re located in the UK, I feel this is a must try site. You have access to a site that most of the world cannot play on (Or can at great risk) that has a healthy number of recreational players. There is a rakeback system which is great in today’s poker market. Sky Poker is not for everyone though, 15 seconds for every action might be more of a curse than a blessing.