There are plenty of poker apps out there for your iPhone and iPad, but Bold Poker sets itself apart by cleverly using an iPad as the dealer and table, and nearby iPhones as each person’s poker hand.
Bold Poker has been around for a while now, but we were recently reminded of just how awesome the app is thanks to Daring Fireball’s John Gruber.
One of the coolest things about Bold Poker is that it’s designed to recreate rather than replace your typical poker night, allowing you to use real chips (and let’s be honest, fiddling with your pile of poker chips is one of the best parts of playing).
Aside from requiring tangible chips, the only other thing you’ll need to provide is an iPad, iPhone, and an internet connection.
Here’s how playing a game of Bold Poker works.
Everyone downloads the free Bold Poker app, and the app automatically loops everyone into the game.The iPad acts a dealer, shuffling and doling out each hand to people.
Then just swipe to reveal the cards, and bet how you normally would using the chips you brought along.
Looking at your hand on your iPhone, you can choose to peek at the cards, just like you could using real cards.
Bold Poker also has a genius monetisation model where the iPad dealer takes a “cigarette break” every half hour that lasts for five minutes — unless you pay to remove that pause for the evening.
And that’s essentially all there is to it! It’s simple, free, and smartly designed, all while simultaneously preserving the aspects of the real-life, tactile poker game you’ve come to love. Just make sure you decide beforehand who’s bringing the chips.
You can download Bold Poker for free over at the App Store.