Last summer, hoping to see more of the WSOP Main Event, I signed up for a year of PokerGo. I want to love it. I really do. But I have to admit that my experience thus far with PokerGo has been mixed. The necessity of an outlet such as PokerGo is obvious. Ever since Black Friday, poker has slowly vanished from TV as I discussed earlier this year. What is a poker loving girl to do?

Sign up for a year of PokerGo, of course.

The Good

PokerGo has some great features. Poker After Dark has finally found a new home there, and is just as fun as it always was. The channel live streams a number of tournaments, including WSOP and WPT events, and the US Poker Open. They also have some interesting features, some new and some recycled. I found their comedy mini-series “Poker Nights” quite refreshing. However, each episode is only about 12 minutes long, so I watched the entire series in less than three hours. There are several other interesting series like “Dead Money” which follows a player through preparation for and play in the Super High Roller Bowl, and “Pokerography” in which each episode tells the story of a different high profile poker player.

The Bad

I have two real complaints about PokerGo. The first is simply that I miss my packages. I loved the old WSOP Main event package. I miss inviting Lon and Norm into my living room each week throughout the fall to update me on the course of the WSOP. Even though the action had happened a couple months prior to the condensed material, I kept myself on a strict poker media lockdown to be able to fully enjoy the vicissitudes of the Main Event.

Poker Go lacks such packaged coverage. When you watch an event on PokerGo you watch every hand live or in replay. And I’m sorry, but live poker can be boring. I want to see the interesting hands, but I don’t need to see everyone fold around the table for 20 minutes. I know that watching live is a more pure experience, and sometimes I have the appetite for it. But more often I would prefer to see the highlights with some solid analysis and maybe Tony Dunst to give me the “Raw Deal.”

Should I stay or should I PokerGo? Click To Tweet

The more central issue I have with PokerGo is that, however I try to watch, I have streaming issues. Shows freeze or hiccup. Sometimes they shift so that the video doesn’t match the audio. And sometimes they are a blur. This is true when I try to stream to my television over wifi, and also when I use a cable to connect my laptop to the TV. I’ve even had streaming trouble just watching on my iPad, no second device involved. And I stream Netflix, Showtime, AND Amazon Prime in my home just fine. So the issue is not my connection speed. I did a little googling around in various forums and discovered that I am far from alone in suffering from PokerGo streaming issues.

So 1,000 thank yous to PokerGo for giving poker a new virtual home. However, the jury is still out on whether I will renew my subscription come June.


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