There are substantial differences between online poker gaming and conventional, in-person gaming.
One obvious difference is that players do not sit right across from each other, removing any ability to observe others’ reactions and body language. Instead, online poker players learn to focus more keenly on opponents’ betting patterns, reaction time, speed of play, use of check boxes/auto plays, opponents’ fold/flop percentages, chat box, waiting for the big blind, beginners’ tells, and other behavior tells that are not physical in nature. Since poker is a game that requires adaptability, successful online players learn to master the new frontiers of their surroundings.
Another less obvious difference is the rate of play. In brick and mortar casinos the dealer has to collect the cards, shuffle, and deal them after every hand. Due to this and other delays common in offline casinos, the average rate of play is around thirty hands per hour. However, online casinos do not have these delays. The dealing and shuffling are instantaneous, there are no delays relating to counting chips (for a split pot), and on average the play is faster due to “auto-action” buttons (where the player selects his action before his turn). It is not uncommon for an online poker table to average ninety to one hundred hands per hour.