If you’re thinking about downloading PokerTime, don’t do anything until you’ve read this review. From all the evidence we’ve gathered, this is a mobile poker app to be avoided. Even though the site makes some enticing claims about cutting-edge anti-collusion technology and a PokerTime HUD (Heads up display tool) ban, the reality is less appealing.
From our research, we found out that this company isn’t licensed. Not only that, payments aren’t guaranteed and the software is far from standard. And, to top it all off, a representative for the company displayed some of the worst customer service skills we’ve ever seen in a forum post about PokerTime scam allegations.
So, while it’s great that you can access this app from any country in the world, we don’t think you should use it. And, if you stick with us for the next few minutes, we’ll explain in detail why we’ve come to that conclusion.
In Our Pokertime Review:
- About the Pokertime club / agent model
- Legality Loopholes (& USA availability)
- Exploitative fees and high rake
- No fund protection or withdrawal guarantees
- Our recommended poker sites for your area
Pokertime Blacklisted Poker App
Pokertime is blacklisted by PokerListings
- we strongly advise against playing on this app.
Most players are amateurs
Heads up, NLHE, PLO and OFC games
Not licensed by any recognized legal body.
Underground network is shady
High rake and fees charged to players
Unreliable agents and 100s of unregulated clubs
Irregular cashouts and high fees up to 7.5%
Botting, cheats and hacks are rife
Payments outside app, unsafe
Support is unprofessional and unreliable
Multi-accounting is allowed (up to 3 per player)
Players use HUDs for unfair advantage
About the Pokertime App
This poker app was released in 2019, and it offers a decent interface while running on Red Dragon software. On the surface, it looks decent, and easy to use, and all games use the app’s play chips which you purchase via Bitcoin through some remote addressee. And there’s steady traffic 24/7 because the app is available across time zones, including Asia and the US and Australia.
Although there are plenty of top-quality Asian-friendly poker apps right now like GGPoker and Natural8, this isn’t one of them. That may sound like a damning verdict but, from our own experience and what we’ve read in other PokerTime reviews and discussions in major forums, this poker operator has a lot of shortcomings.
To carry out this PokerTime review, we downloaded the app and found some issues right out of the gate. We’ll explain the whole story further down in the review. But in short, if you want to play poker with friends, there are plenty of fantastic social gaming apps you can get on instead, including Pokio.
How Pokertime Works
The Poker Time app works like many others. You download PokerTime to your iOS or Android device and register an account. You also can’t use PokerTime on PC or Mac devices without some emulator, which is annoying. The installation process isn’t what you’d expect. You have to install a “configuration profile” on your device before it will accept the app. This isn’t necessarily a problem because configuration profiles are sometimes used to install authorization, security and location settings. After the PokerTime download, it will eventually ask to connect to devices on your network (which is unusual).
Eventually, once we got into the app, we found that the PokerTime poker lobby was empty. If you want to play Hold’em, Short Deck, Omaha and Open Face Chinese Poker games from micro to high stakes, you have to join a club. This app is actually a ponzi scheme. Instead of dealing with the platform directly, players must negotiate chip values, games buy-ins, rake, fees, and withdrawals with agents and clubs. They have no legal responsibility and are not obliged to offer support for app issues, payment difficulties, cheating / collusion and hacking.
- Real Money Loopholes
This operator isn’t licensed and yet it’s available in all countries - how? Well, you can only pay via cryptocurrencies to some remote address (not via the app itself) and get PokerTime chips. So there are no real money games, and money doesn’t go through the app. This setup is what keeps the app “legal” outside officially licensed poker states - by bypassing the many anti-gambling laws.
PokerTime controls the exchange rate of play chips to crypto and vice versa, but you’re still not safe. These private clubs are shady because all interactions are between the club owner and member - shifting risk onto players. This includes the game formats, schedule, play money chips value and transactions. This makes it hard to track and so you haven’t got any protection or legal recourse if something happens to your bankroll.
- Agents Profit Off Players
Poker Time Online doesn’t force you to use agents when it comes to deposits and withdrawals. However, you will find that agents and PokerTime club owners have a certain amount of control over your experience. In essence, they create the games and admit players into a club.
That’s fine, but it does mean you’re at their mercy. If they decide to create unfair gaming conditions, there isn’t much you can do about it. It’s also true that agents make money from the clubs they run. Therefore, you could find that someone is trying to exploit you for their own gain.
- Rake and fees exploitation
On first inspection, the PokerTime rake system looks pretty good. Short Deck games are raked at 2%, every other type of game is raked at 4%-5%. That’s in line with other online poker sites. We couldn't find anything about rake caps, but their selling point is that losers don’t pay rake - because they make money off players in different ways. PokerTime charges a 5% fee for deposits and withdrawals, any benefit of not paying rake is quickly nullified. These fees are extremely high and, given that you’ve only got three ways to pay, you can’t avoid them. That’s a huge black mark in our book.
On top of this, there are network fees and exchange fees. You’re buying an onsite currency known as PKT, which means PokerTime controls the exchange rate. This is strange because reputable poker sites accept real-money payments and the exchange rates are set by the forex market.
- Weak Security
Another issue we noticed during the sign-up process was the fact you can’t add special characters to your password. The most reputable poker apps allow you to do this in order to make your password harder to crack. PokerTime also claims to have advanced artificial intelligence software that can detect collusion. It also has a “fair play” policy which bans the use of HUDs and tracking software. Unfortunately, our research suggests that these provisions could be used to unfairly ban players.
- Unprofessional App Representatives
As well as publicly accusing players and affiliate sites of being cheats and criminals, we’ve seen Pokertime reps shift responsibility onto the players themselves. To choose the right affiliate and not rely on the app. .
“Choose your affiliates wisely, do not go with dirty affiliates that take a share in your play, these affiliates make money not through rakeback but through earnings of colluding players,” ultracoolman wrote on 2+2.
The rep also said there are 101 ways the site could scam people if it wanted and that it is affiliates who are scammers.
“If your account is banned contact helpdesk directly, your affiliate is the one that scammed you by knowingly bringing colluding players into the platform, it is not the platform that scammed you,” ultracoolman continued.
Moreover, the reps refused to answer any questions because anyone commenting on PokerTime’s integrity is a “hater”. Any company that treats existing and potential customers in this way isn’t worth supporting.
*Note that some of the allegations made by players aren’t verified and we only have their version of events.
Risky Payments and Missing Withdrawals
Reports on various forums, including 2+2, detail individual experiences where players have won some money and had to wait a few days for their withdrawals to be processed. Then, once they’d flagged up the delay, they were told that they were cheaters and their accounts were closed. These players claim they weren’t given a chance to respond and their money was taken.
The whole payment process seems convoluted at best and sketchy at worst. Once you’ve joined some Poker clubs, you’ll need to buy some credits. To make deposits and withdrawals, you’ll need to use one of three cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin, Ethereum and USDT - there are no real-money payment options. A lot of people don’t use cryptos, so this is another major problem. PokerTime doesn’t appear to offer its own internal financial provisions. In other words, your payments will be routed through a crypto exchange known as Binance.
- No Financial Liability
Now, we know that Binance and Cryptocurrencies are generally safe as members of our team use it to buy Bitcoin. However, you don’t make payments via the app, which is risky. And so, PokerTime doesn’t accept any liability for misdirected payments or lost funds. Basically, you have to send BTC, ETH or USDT to specific addresses. If you get the wallet address wrong, the nature of cryptos is such that you can’t reverse the transaction or retrieve lost coins. This also leaves a backdoor open to fraud and money laundering from the agents / clubs side.
The Legit Poker App Checklist
The main purpose of PokerListings is to serve as a complete guide for poker players. So we can only, in good conscious, give you info about this poker room while pointing you towards other more safe, reputable online poker sites. Our team has decades of online poker experience to be able to spot the bad eggs from the good ones. So when we suggest a poker room, you can rest assured that it has the following:
- License/s: Official licensing seals, made public as proof
- Audits: External auditors, like eCOGRA, testing them
- Security: Up-to-date security measures and protection policies
- Value Offers: Some of the best poker bonuses and promotions
- Reliable Payments: Fast, trusted deposit / withdrawal methods
- Segregated Accounts: Player funds kept separate for payout reasons
- Support: Responsive, helpful customer support team on-hand
Our Recommended Online Card Rooms
If you’re in the USA, try the following legit poker US brands like:
Is Pokertime rigged?The PokerTime Android and iOS apps use random number generators that have been certified by Gaming Labs. We viewed the certificate, so we know that’s true. However, this is the only certificate of safety and legitimacy we could find. What you need to worry about is the collusion and cheating that happens by other players on the app.
Is Pokertime legit or a scam?There are multiple forum posts with the title “Pokertime scam” and, even though we can’t verify each individual claim, there are a lot of red flags. The fact this operator isn’t licensed is a big problem. There are also question marks over the Pokertime iOS software and they way you have to install it. Then, of course, there are the issues with players having their bankrolls confiscated.
Is Pokertime a safe real money app?No, in our opinion, it’s not. If you scroll back up and read our Pokertime app review, you’ll see why the installation process is odd. We also have concerns about the payment system and the fact this app doesn’t have any regulatory oversight.