In a move to recapture some lost market share, Carbon Poker, main skin of the Merge Gaming Network, has introduced a mobile browser-based client that is optimized for iOS devices. The fact that it is browser-based means that it will actually work on Android devices, but it is not currently optimized for it. There is no word if a version will be released for sister site Aced.com or not.
The move from Carbon is a smart one, as it’s the first in the US to offer something like this. Even on a world stage, this is a pretty unique product with few sites offering mobile options, and even fewer deciding to go the browser direction as opposed to the app direction. The reason that offering this as a browser-based option has some advantages deals more with the ToS that apps have to adhere to with the Google Play and Apple app stores. Offering the browser option allows them to push updates whenever they want and helps them by not having to worry about not meeting any of the terms of service from the store, which has become a bigger concern with Google Play clamping down on gambling apps lately.
Merge has been losing traffic to Bovada and Winning Poker Network in the race for supremacy in the US, and coming up with something new to offer players is going to go a long way in trying to win back customers, especially after Bovada’s release of Zone Poker. As Revolution continues to fall, the hole for a second best site in the US is huge and Merge being able to take advantage of that and clearly cement itself in that position would be highly beneficial. Bovada will still have a large lead regardless, but there are reasons that players do not like playing on Bovada, so Carbon Poker giving players a reason to switch could help.
The mobile client currently offers micro limit no limit hold’em as well as limit hold’em and the offerings are expected to increase as the software gets used by more players and bugs can be worked out. You can currently access the client by pointing your browser to m.carbonpoker.ag. It will then prompt you to log in with your player credentials and then you are free to play whatever games are running at the time.
I played with it for a little bit yesterday and it was fairly nice. The beta testing that has been going on for nearly two months now seems to have fixed a lot of the issues and provided a good product for its major launch. Playing on a phone is a little annoying as the screen size is too small for my liking, but a tablet would make this a really good offering and I think would have value to a lot of people. Even without the optimization for Android, it still worked fine for me. So while it might be a better experience on an iOS device, it’s not bad for an Android user.
For more updates about Carbon Poker and its offerings, you can visit their sub-forum on twoplustwo.com, or you can read PokerUpdate.com as we will update you with the biggest news that matters to you.