launches subscription-based PRO section

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Apr 22, 2013 Posted in Reviews | 2 Comments »

pokerfuseI begin each day by sitting down in my home office and checking my inbox for “Poker” Google Alerts. Once I have sifted through the day’s Google-worthy poker news (marveling at the number of fire “poker” assaults that occur) I move on to my bookmarked poker news outlets, with my first stop being Last week a surprise awaited me when I opened the PokerFuse homepage, as the site had added a subscription-based PRO section, in addition to the free-content the site provides. I had a chance to give the PokerFuse PRO section a test drive this weekend and will now share my thoughts on the site’s pretty ambitious undertaking, PokerFuse PRO.

About PokerFuse

For those of you unfamiliar with the site has been around for roughly two years and they have been doing things a bit differently right from the get-go. PokerFuse has foregone the affiliate model favored at virtually every online poker news outlet, instead relying on selling ad space for revenue. So what you get at PokerFuse is unbiased reporting, as the site doesn’t have to worry that they are painting a certain poker room in a bad light, causing them to lose sign-ups or have the site end their affiliate deal. Basically PokerFuse is beholden to no corporate masters, and it shows in their articles.

Subscription-Based Content

Online subscription-based content has grown over the years, with major newspapers and magazines charging nominal monthly fees for access to their full slate of content, and in the online gambling world most of us are familiar with eGaming Review Magazine and their subscription-based online content at (a subscription to will run you £360/year), so PokerFuse is not in unchartered waters and seems to be shooting for the same price-point as

Also, PokerFuse isn’t the first online poker news site to go down this path; attempted something similar last year, charging $3.95/month for access to their “Insider” section, a project that came to a halt when Wicked Chops ended their Insider section in September of 2012. That being said, now that I’ve had access behind both sites’ pay-walls, it’s hard to compare the two because PokerFuse Pro is a far more ambitious project with far more to offer.

PokerFuse PRO

According to the site’s “About” page, the PRO section features exclusive content, first-looks at all PokerFuse articles, extended articles, daily E-Mails, a weekly Kindle Magazine, and for the more industry-oriented reader you can pay a steeper monthly price to receive, links, market data, and other resources. The price to access PokerFuse Pro is $19/month for their PRO subscription, and $49/month for their PRO with DATA subscription, which on the surface seems rather high, but as I realized just minutes after logging into the PRO section, you definitely get your money’s worth. Here is a look at all the features offered to PokerFuse PRO subscribers:

First off, the articles in the PRO section are well-written (as is every PokerFuse article) and informative, and the PRO sections will also track which articles you have read and what new content has been posted since your last visit. As stated above, some of the articles are exclusive to the PRO section, and all PokerFuse articles land here before being posted to the free area of the site.

I haven’t had a chance to see the Daily E-Mail, which is a summary of the day’s news or the weekly Kindle Magazine, so I’ll withhold any comment on those aspects of the membership at this time.

So is the PRO section worth $19/month? Probably not if you are a casual follower of the poker world, but if you are in poker media, own poker-related websites, or are just a poker player who likes to stay on top of the latest happenings in the poker world it’s easily worth the $19/month, as it looks like you’ll get about two exclusive articles each day as well as the extended articles and further reading links for all PokerFuse content.

PokerFuse PRO with DATA

You might think that access to the exclusive articles and content is the reason to sign-up for a PRO account so you are probably thinking precisely what I did, “why would I ever pay an extra $30/month for some data?” Well, the answer is this: PokerFuse PRO is (or can be if you sign-up for the PRO with DATA plan) so much more than a simple poker news outlet, so let me give you an explanation of the main features you will find in this section:

* News Beat: You might think this is just some cheesy list of links to poker news articles that someone collates from a Google Alert, but it’s not. Under this tab you’ll find easy to navigate, categorized links to daily poker stories and forum threads (from 10-20 links every day by the looks of it). The links come from places ranging from 2+2 and the PokerStars blog, to local newspapers and nightly news –these are links even KevMath probably doesn’t find and read. These links can also be filtered by Forums, Video, or Views (opinions).

* Market Data: So what kind of info can PokerFuse give you that you can’t find elsewhere on the Internet? Basically, think on steroids. The Data section has traffic reports with filters and interactive charts and graphs (it’s a lot like Google Analytics to be honest, which is to say it’s in-depth, customizable, and very useful) that can track US rooms, Spanish rooms, International rooms, traffic trends and patterns for the entire industry or each room individually, and my personal favorite option, the Timeline. The Timeline lets you look at the site’s track record and offers a nice summary on the site as well, and has links to important moments and articles in the site’s history you can click for further reading.

* Directory: Want to know what regulatory body has jurisdiction over a certain poker room or network? You’ll find that here. You’ll also find up-to-date (yes I’m talking to you PokerScout) information on the number of skins at different networks and who the parent companies of these rooms are. The Directory area also has links to other gaming articles found on the web.

Now, the PRO with DATA section is far from cheap, but it’s definitely worth the price to certain people. Media and industry people would do well to sign-up for a PRO with DATA account. Researching a poker room or network, or finding specific data regarding rooms to target in different markets can be found with a couple clicks of a mouse. The cost will likely keep a lot of people away, which is too bad because it looks like it could a game-changer for the poker industry.

The Future of PokerFuse PRO

The success/failure of PokerFuse Pro could very well change the way poker news is delivered, and how poker news outlets generate revenue, but we are only a week into the PokerFuse PRO era, so only time will tell how the industry feels about subscription-based content and data.

It’s likely that things will be tweaked and changes will be made as the PRO section is only in its infancy, and as PokerFuse recieves feedback and looks at their own numbers regarding what is working and what is not. I asked’s Mike Gentile what direction they were taking the site and his response indicated that the PRO section would be very fluid in the beginning: “The future of pokerfuse PRO will be determined in large part by the feedback of our subscribers. Since pokerfuse was launched two years ago, we have strived to provide a valuable and useful service to our readers. That same approach will drive the future of PRO.”


2 Responses to “ launches subscription-based PRO section”

  1. Des Duffy says:

    Nice article Steve. Pokerfuse run a great product and I like the route they are taking with the subscription model, while not totally alienating the audience they’ve gained since launch. It’s a patient play.

  2. Steve Ruddock says:

    Thanks Des. It is a top-notch outfit over there

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