In this column we deliver you the latest and most interesting online poker industry news from across the world and all platforms.
Germany’s online gambling situation endangered by taxes
It almost comes as no surprise that taxes might be the final nail in the coffin of a thriving German online gambling landscape. After all, taxes have already been the main reason for professional poker players to flee the country.
This year on 1st July it is planned to launch a new piece of legislation and hand out licenses to online gambling operators. Many restrictions had already been published and partially implemented and caused many discussions in the poker community. Most troublesome have been the 4-table maximum and €1,000 deposit restrictions.
Now the German poker scene is holding their breath as a decision on taxation for players is outstanding and if this gets pushed through, many operators might not even apply for licenses and online gambling will be forced into the underground.
The proposed taxation is 5.3% for online poker and 8% for online slots. Now several regulatory and consulting bodies are discussing possible outcomes of this taxation and everything is up in the air until we have a decision.
The German government is likely to achieve the opposite of what the actual point of a regulated online gambling market is. They will increase the danger of addiction, by casino players trying to win back the higher losses, and probably push all online gamblers, casino and poker, to the underground with no regulation and much less protection.
If the taxes will be added or not will probably only be seen once the new laws are being introduced in July. Until then we can only keep our fingers crossed for German poker.
Google’s Play Store opens the gates for gambling app downloads
Adding gambling apps of any sorts to iOS and Android has been an issue all the way. Now Google’s Play Store has opened the gates slightly more, allowing gambling app downloads in 15 new markets.
From 1st March terms and conditions are going to be altered for the following markets: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Romania, Spain, Sweden and the USA.
There are, of course, strict application processes and conduct rules in place, but this is great news for many licensed online gambling operators and their customers.
PokerStars announces Micro Millions Marathon and Sunday Million 15th Anniversary
We had a bit of an online poker breather, but that is over now as this and the following two parts of this article will show.
Leading the online operator pack is, in many ways, PokerStars. They are still in the middle of the brief 50/50 Series and now announced not just the 15th Anniversary Sunday Million in March, but also the Micro Millions Marathon this month.
It looks like the poker giant has started to opt for shorter tournament series formats, only spanning across 4 to 7 days, keeping it snappy.
The Micro Millions Marathon will be held from 11th to 14th February and offer a whooping 107 events over these four days. Buy-ins will range from $1.10 to $11, except the Main Event, which will be a $22 Buy-in PKO with $1 million guaranteed on Valentine’s Day.
In total $3 million are guaranteed for this marathon series and there are a selection of satellites already running.
In addition to this, Stars has announced the 15th Anniversary of the legendary Sunday Million. This will take place on 21st March with a $215 buy-in and $12.5 million guaranteed.
A bunch of satellites and promotions are and will be offered for this landmark event, but after having had more than $18 million in the prize pool of the 14th Anniversary event, PokerStars is probably not worried to hit the $12.5 million this year.
partypoker MILLIONS Online announced
Next in line with an event announcement is partypoker. Starting on 13th February you will have the pleasure of playing the famous partypoker MILLIONS Online, if you can afford or satellite into it. This tournament series will run until 8th March and include 28 events.
The buy-ins in this series are of the higher kind with the smallest event being the $530 MILLIONS Mini Second Chance. The Main Event has a $5,300 buy-in and for the high rollers among you there are also 10ks, 25ks and the $102k buy-in Mega High Roller.
partypoker is always shining with great satellite offerings and also for this event you can take your chance for a massive payout starting from $0.01 centroll satellites.
Bounty Hunter Series returns to iPoker
The iPoker Network has announced the return of the popular Bounty Hunter Series, last seen in 2018. Action will start on 22nd February with satellites and the series will conclude on 8th March.
A total of 83 events will be offered with buy-ins from €10 to €1,000 a total of €1 million in prize pool guarantees. Not just Hold’em events are on offer, also PLO, PLO8 and some 6+ events are on the menu.
iPoker admits to finally having realized that tournament series are a great tool to attract players to their sites and so this looks like the beginning of what might become a new and happy MTT relationship.
We can be curious about what the operator will deliver us in the near future when it comes to tournament poker