Flash Poker Sites

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Best Poker Sites WIth FlashWith all of the fast-fold clients now available at online poker rooms, players could be forgiven for thinking that a "flash" poker room was just another version of Rush Poker or Zoom Poker.  Actually, Flash refers to the programming language used to create the room, just like you might talk about a Java-based poker room or an iPhone version of an online poker room. 

While Flash poker sites are nowhere near as widespread as they were in the early days of the online poker industry, there are still a number of major rooms that continue to offer a Flash version of their software.  Let's talk a bit more about those rooms, and then continue on to discuss the basic advantages and drawbacks of playing poker at a Flash-based site.

Best Poker Sites Using Flash

We're not alone in regarding 888 Poker as the best Flash poker software available for real money players.  Online poker fans love 888 for the wide selection of games the site offers, especially the jam-packed tournament lobby that offers you a plethora of ways to win your seat in major online and live poker events.  While the Flash version of the 888 Poker software isn't as feature rich as the downloadable version, it's still absolutely sufficient for the purpose of playing some poker online.

Remember that not all options are available in the Flash client, and that the interface is going to be slightly different than what you're used to if you've previously played using the standalone 888 software.  If that's the case, we strongly encourage you to give the Flash software a trial run at low stakes so that you can acclimate to the unique environment it offers.

USA Players Please Read - There are no poker rooms offering a no download version for US players. Try visiting our US poker page or altnatively, you can visit our Mac poker or Linux page for a list of US sites that operate on these operating systems

Why Play Poker at Flash Based Poker Sites?

There are a few basic reasons why rooms offer Flash versions of their software as an alternative to the complete, downloadable software package:

  1. Operating System Compatibility: Since Flash rooms are essentially browser-based, having a Flash version of an online poker room lets a site welcome players who might be using somewhat uncommon operating systems (say Ubuntu or Linux) not supported by the main software.  While it might not be worth a room's time to develop a separate software package for each and every one of those operating systems, deploying a Flash client allows them to address the entire problem with one solution.
  2. Not All Users Can Download and Install Programs:  Whether a player is at work, using a shared machine or just on their netbook, there are several reasons why they might not want to (or might not be able to) download and install software.  Poker rooms don't want to leave these players out in the cold, so they turn to technologies like Flash that allow them to offer a secure online poker experience without requiring any download on the part of the user.
  3. Get Players in the Game Quicker:  For some players, online poker is something to hop in and out of rapidly.  They want to get on, play a few hands to kill some time and then get out just as quickly.  Flash poker rooms are great for this crowd, because you can just bring up a webpage, log in and go right to the tables in just a few clicks.  While it might not seem significant for the patient among us, the difference between that process and downloading and installing software, loading it, logging in and finally getting to select a table is definitely substantial to players who just want to get online and hit the tables.

Drawbacks to Online Poker Rooms Developed in Flash

Flash has definitely taken a few major hits during the last few years.  Perhaps the worst blow was Apple's decision to not support Flash on iPhones and iPads, a choice that essentially sounded the final bell for Flash's long-term prospects as a development environment.

Apple publicly cited security concerns and bloat as the reasons why Flash didn't make the cut, and those same two qualities are the primary drawbacks of playing poker online at a Flash-based room.  Such rooms are generally not as stable as the primary client, and can really put a drag on some computers - especially older models - making it difficult to do much of anything but play poker.  Those drawbacks aside, Flash-powered poker sites are still a viable choice for players who can't download software, have operating system compatibility issues or are just itching to get to the tables as fast as humanly possible.