Poker in India has evolved enormously in the past few years with numerous Indian poker players performing well and bagging big prizes in live poker tournaments as well as in online poker. Not only the players, but also the fan base has amplified immensely in the past few years. The online poker industry evolved rapidly since its inception in late 2000s. From the years 2000 – 2013 the online poker industry grew normally but the industry saw a huge expansion in the year 2015. This year will be remembered as a landmark one in the records of poker history in India. After an almost dead couple of years, 2015 saw a resurrection of action with not only live tournaments at Goa, mostly through the India Poker Championships (IPC) series, but also a shoot in online activity, with existing and new operators vying for a larger share of the market pie.
The year also saw the emergence of other issues, such as landmark lawful rulings, political games and tax assertions, etc; issues, which have left a profound impact and created precedence for additional developments, both positive and negative.
In this round up, the top five developments of 2015 are cited that strongly affected the Indian poker industry and will be looked back upon as high points that directed the path of poker in India:
India is growing from strength to strength with internet and smartphones becoming effortlessly accessible for the masses. This has, in turn, created a huge market and given momentum to the online poker industry to keep moving ahead. Pegged at $110 – $120 million in 2016, the industry is estimated to attain record-breaking revenue and growth in the coming years.
Over the years, the poker industry has tried to focus on shifting the perception that people have had about the game. The industry is incessantly working towards generating awareness about the high degree of skill that the game involves. Estimates say that close to a million players in India at present play real-money poker on a regular basis. In the coming years, more and more potential players entering the poker scene in India is on the cards. But overall, governments are waking up to the fact that huge revenues are engendered through the game, as witnessed by the recent verdict of the Karnataka government to consider floating casinos. In addition, the government’s support will certainly have a constructive impact on the online version of poker.
The issue of accepting poker as a game of skill is presently like a snowball; the more it rolls, the larger it gets and the more unfeasible it becomes for society to overlook it.
The improvement of Internet technology has helped us to eliminate the limitations once we thought were unable to accomplish. So with the stats trending and abundant room for development, India will be able to reach new heights in the online poker industry in the coming years.