888 vs Pokerstars vs Titan Poker: which operator to choose?
There are a few important things to think about when choosing a poker operator to play with: the welcome bonus on offer, the type and availability of tournaments and the ease of use of the lobby and the mobile app.
888 Poker, PokerStars and Titan Poker are three of the biggest and most popular operators on the market so choosing where to take your money isn't exactly easy.
Take a look at how the three compare below to help make your decision.
|Range of tournaments:||19/20||20/20||12/20|
|Our verdict:||the site with the smallest but most rewarding bonus||the biggest site with the widest range of tournaments||the less popular site but possibly with better table availability|
|Website:||888 Poker||Poker Stars||Titan Poker|
Welcome bonus – 888
Each of the three operators is running a welcome bonus offer, so new customers to 888, PokerStars or Titan Poker will get the opportunity to cash in on some extra playing funds:
- 888: no deposit required to get £20 free when you download the poker software;
- PokerStars: deposit and get an 100% reward of up to £400;
- Titan Poker: deposit for a 200% bonus up to £1,200.
On first glance the Titan Poker bonus of a possible maximum of £1,200 might seem like the biggest and therefore the best welcome bonus available.
However, to benefit from over a thousand pounds in bonus funds you would have to deposit at least £600 in the first place before you have to unlock the money in £5 installments for every 480 Titanbet Poker Points you earn. Players can only earn points from putting more money into pots at games, so realistically you will have to spend a lot more than £1,200 to get the same amount back.
To get the PokerStars bonus, you have to download the game client software to your computer rather than play online, and the funds will be released in installments of £10 as you earn VIP player points by making further deposits.
Though the £20 888 bonus may seem small, it only requires a £10 spend and is released immediately to play with, which is why we think it's the best bonus on the market.
Range of tournaments – PokerStars
On PokerStars you'll find the World Championship of Poker and Spring Championship of Online Poker tournament series, the biggest you'll find anywhere online. They also run a number of other tournaments with big jackpots like the weekly Sunday Millions, Billions, Warm Up and Majors events.
888 has a good offering too, including a Sunday event worth $100k and a Thursday event of $50k. The site often hosts more than 10,000 at any one time, guaranteeing tournament availability.
The loser in this category appears to be Titan Poker. Despite being one of the big poker operators, its traffic is undoubtedly lower, meaning there is less tournament action than the others.
Lobby – 888
On any poker operator, the lobby is where you can see and select the games happening at the time.
888 wins this category for its “quick-click” lobby with its advanced filters and personalization settings including auto top-up and auto seating.
Due to the heavy traffic on the PokerStars site, their lobby is easily the busiest. The layout is clear and easy to navigate, but perhaps a little less sophisticated than 888's. One of the limitations on the Titan Poker site is that players have to join waiting lists from the lobby each time instead of directly from the table itself.
Mobile apps – PokerStars
PokerStars and 888 have launched mobile apps allowing you to take poker play to your phone.
The 888 one is, however, a specialised Texas Hold'em app, meaning that if you're looking for other poker types and variants, it's probably not the app for you.
The apps all offer the following features:
- Mobile lobby with filters and player and tournament search features;
- Access to your saved favourite games for quick play;
- Table chat;
- Real money stakes;
- Account management including depositing and withdrawing funds.
Both of the operators' mobile apps are compatible with iPhone and Android devices. You can also play on all of the apps using your existing online account.
Titan Poker has been slow on the uptake in this regard, only so far launching a Poker Planner app for keeping track of tournaments on your smartphone. The operator has suggested that a real money poker app could be launched before 2016 but even then, it will take some time for it to take off.
Our verdict: 888
In a showdown between PokerStars, 888 and Titan Poker, we're going to give the benefit of the doubt to 888. Although PokerStars is the biggest site with the widest range of tournaments, its status as the market leader means it doesn't necessarily offer the best bonuses or have the best availability due to its high traffic.
Titan Poker falls behind on most counts as the obviously less developed operator of the three. For the easiest and most realistically rewarding bonus, we think 888 is the better choice. Along with this is a good range of tournaments, an easy-to-navigate lobby and a good Texas Hold'em mobile app.
You can take advantage of the £20 bonus by clicking this button below:
Once you've made your choice and started playing poker online, you'd be well advised to read up on the top 5 amateur poker mistakes to avoid at all cost before signing up to a table.