First US online poker site proves popular

Consumers in the US have flocked to the first legal online gambling website to be based in the country after it opened to the public at the start of this month.

Ultimate Poker is the first platform to take advantage of new legislation in Nevada that permits online gambling to operate from the state. It is likely to be watched with great interest by other firms, which will want to know how much demand there is for the services and what the impact of legal online gambling will be.

And the site has quickly proved popular, as the Las Vegas Review Journal reported it dealt out its 100,000th hand just 72 hours after launch, with thousands of users from all over the US and abroad registering for the service.

Chairman of Ultimate Poker Tom Breitling said this is surprising, as gamers in the US have to physically be within the state of Nevada to play via the website.

“I think that's a testament to Las Vegas,” Mr Breitling said. “People are planning their trips and are saying this will be a part of that trip.”

With such a high level of demand, tools such as gaming analytics will be essential for providing the best possible service to users.

Mr Breitling said: “Just because we're pioneering new ground, people still have customer service inquiries.” Therefore, people will gravitate towards sites they know are trustworthy and can be relied on to offer a positive experience.

Customer experience analytics that are tailored to the unique demands of online gaming will be vital to this, as they can be used to spot key trends and insights that businesses can take advantage of to improve the services they offer to customers.

Ultimate Poker will also be gathering comments and observations from users during the initial 30-day trial of the site, which will be used by the Nevada Gaming Commission to make a final decision on whether the site should be allowed to continue operating.

Rivals from across the gaming industry are likely to be watching this closely, as AG Burnett, chairman of Nevada’s Gaming Control Board, told the New York Times the sector is “entering into a different world” with the introduction of online solutions.