BetStars, sister brand of renowned online poker site PokerStars, might be a relative newcomer to the internet sports betting space, but in only a couple of short years it has effectively closed the gap between the giants of the European sports booking industry.
With the introduction of BetStars NJ on September 13, 2018, it begins down a journey to acquire the exact big-name status here in the states. BetStars NJ is the New Jersey sports gambling arm of The Stars Group (TSG), also represents an extension of TSG’s gaming partnership with Resorts Casino in Atlantic City. The publication’s launching in New Jersey includes a mere four months after the U.S. Supreme Court pulled the plug PASPA, monitoring the debut of first inspector DraftKings Sportsbook by about six weeks.
The anticipated sports betting app lives up to its namesake in lots of ways, but for every two experts there’s a con. The app’s proprietary stage is in several ways second-to-none, including a lot of account management features, cool creations, and top-notch integration with all the TSG’s present NJ online poker product. BetStars NJ is also an innovative program, offering players experiences that they simply wont find elsewhere. Bet variety? Strong cashiering? Great promotions? BetStars NJ has everything.
Yet, less than leading pricing in spots, lackluster support, and an occasionally dizzying user interface rips down the book a peg. There is still more good than bad, but a little refinement may be in order.
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How it works
BetStars has taken a conventional route with its latest welcome bonus, but that’s not always a bad thing. The site supplies a full refund up to $500 on a player’s first bet, pending that wager loses. If the bet wins, players will get whatever they are owed in accordance with the likelihood, but will not lock a bonus. Liken into a freeroll.
There are a few caveats worth understanding, most of which don’t diminish the offer. For one, the free wager can only be employed on straights and parlays. Twist & Bet and round robins aren’t qualified.
Also, players who made their initial deposit with Neteller or Skrill aren’t qualified for the offer. This is a very strange nuance, and one that could go easily overlooked without previous knowledge. On the other hand, it doesn’t seem that there are any chances restrictions tied to the free bet. So in the event that you want to play it safe and bet on a heavy favorite with -500 chances, don’t hesitate to do this — only know that only the winnings from free stakes will land in your cash balance, rather than the free bet amount itself.
What’s special about BetStars online sportsbook?
Great (and numerous) promotions: Hardly anyone does promotions very like BetStars NJ. From straightforward matched free stakes, to large new player sign up bonuses, along with a variety of creative one-off events, there seems to always be numerous offers conducting, a lot of which can be stacked, and all of which offer very good value for deal-seeking bettors.
Innovation: BetStars NJ delivers various innovative performance. A number of its innovations, like”Cash Out” could be located in some other NJ online sports betting sites, while some, such as Spin & Bet and Odds Boost Stacks are unique to the operator.
Integration: The BetStars NJ program is intimately connected to the favorite PokerStars NJ online poker app, and stocks a wallet with the same. We are anticipating TSG to go even farther here, integrating its online casino as part of the app, and tying together PokerStars NJ and BetStars NJ on desktop.
Bet variety: BetStars NJ may not have the maximum bets of any operator, but it nevertheless offers a ton, one of those creative multi-part props that often receive boosted odds. This, along with the creations BetStars NJ brings to the table, introduces a degree of fun that’s absent on more traditional NJ online sports gambling sites.
What is not so particular?
A few of the traces on single-game stakes aren’t great.
Weak prop betting.
No PayPal … yet.
BetStars NJ Sportsbook: Software snapshot The BetStars NJ app looks and works about as well as one would expect from a company famous for its proprietary and cutting-edge gambling platforms. Well, perhaps nearly as well.
Upon logging it (or simply opening the program ), players will be treated to a homepage that highlights the apps greatest promotions, its most popular bets (broken out tabularly by game ), and a few featured”Odds Boosts”. There are also sections for trending bets and current in-game bets. It’s all very well laid out, effectively packing a lot of info into a tight space without putting too much strain on the eyes.
BetStars NJ App Homepage
Aesthetically and functionally this is a beautiful program, featuring a vibrant yet readable colour scheme, plenty of graphic icons, which level of responsiveness TSG products are famous for. Account management attributes — and there are a lot of them — are neatly tucked away within an easily accessible side-menu, while essential markets are recorded at the peak of the display. In addition, players may easily access PokerStars NJ in the app, with the duo sharing a common wallet. Cashier access, promotional tabs, and user customization settings are a click away. Concerning whistles and bells, players won’t find better than BetStars NJ.
There are a couple drawbacks. On occasion, we found that gambling options for individual games/matches were slow to load, or did not load at all. A simple refresh generally fixed the issue however. Furthermore, the app is somewhat unwieldy is spots. Detecting a market, and straight bets within that marketplace is really a breeze. But the bets for a single game are all sort of just lumped together, occasionally making it hard to locate a wager of your own liking. It’s fine for less popular contests, but for say, and NFL sport, filters would be fine.
Otherwise, BetStars NJ does a decent job of grouping stocks stakes, and the combo of this Calendar and Highlights tabs works wonderfully for bettors looking to plan out some higher value bets.
The big no-no at launching was that BetStars NJ was originally only available for Android powered devices, with iOS and pc accessibility additional afterwards. We are pretty sure that this is a reflection of everyone rushing to advertise in time for NFL Season 2018-19, and then releasing unfinished products. This black mark was later addressed with BetStars NJ now on the appropriate platforms.
Depositing and withdrawing at BetStars online sportsbook at NJ
As a result of its integration with the PokerStars NJ platform, BetStars NJ didn’t begin from scratch using its cashier, and it reveals. There is a robust selection of secure and reliable depositing and withdrawal options listed on the app, with the sole noteworthy exception being PayPal, but that’s supposedly coming shortly. Once it does, BetStars NJ will rank up there with Play SugarHouse Sports as offering the best payment processing rollout in the biz.
PAYMENT METHOD DEPOSIT? WITHDRAWAL? MIN. DEPOSIT
ACH (eChecks) Yes $10
Visa/MasterCard Yes No $10
PokerStars PlayYes $10
Neteller Yes Yes $10
Skrill Yes Yes $10
Online Bank Transfer Yes No $10
PayNearMe Yes No $10
Cash @ Resorts Cage Yes Yes $10
BetStars NJ will conveniently store the most recently used deposit methods, enabling bettors to put subsequent deposits much faster than they would be able to otherwise. Deposits generally validate within a blink of an eye, even faster than any other program we’ve played on.
One small drawback is that BetStars NJ sets initial deposit limits fairly low. Being restricted to between $500 — $640 a $ and $2,000 per month for the majority of methods feels a little too restrictive. High rollers are most likely best off using Skrill, which sets a $15,000 yearly limitation, or of going down to Resorts AC, where they can deposit up to $30,000 a shot ($100,000 monthly limit). Obviously, players may also request increased limits, and support will normally oblige, pending all of their previous deposits processed.
What are the lines such as at BetStars NJ?
Players searching for always great lines throughout the board might be mildly disappointed by BetStars NJ. While its NFL point spreads and spreads are usually level for the industry, the money lines we observed so much for MLB, NFL, and other sports are still fairly mediocre: Generally, they’re still a tick better than the currency lines posted on DraftKings Sportsbook, but amounts worse than on FanDuel Sportsbook and Caesars.
This isn’t to say BetStars NJ is devoid of high value opportunities, far from it. Besides myriad promotions, many of which significantly fortify a participant’s expected value, the app will sometimes post a very competitive pre-game currency line. So keep an eye out. And of course, players that like to roll the dice on elaborate prop bets, will often get to do this on BetStars NJ at greater odds, as a result of the program’s Odds Boost creation. And we can assure you that Odds Boosts are not only a once-in-a-while gimmick. No, rather it looks like all major market games include an assortment of these low juice wagers.
Regular old prop bets are probably best avoided since the traces on odds outcomes generally hover round -120, which is not great. And in-game odds are predictably worse than their counterparts that are overburdened, but not by any substance degree more than they’re on most other NJ online sportsbooks.
BetStars NJ is currently just a little light on markets, but predominantly, are the rest of the NJ business’s sports gambling apps. Rather than the 25+ markets accessible on BetStars’ international supplying, in New Jersey we get 10 to begin:
Basketball (such as NCAA)
Football (such as NCAA)
Soccer (multiple leagues)
Bet variety at BetStars online sportsbook
BetStars NJ may be a little light on markets, but it almost makes up for it by offering various bets within each current market, a few of which are presented via betting formats that can’t be enjoyed elsewhere. Does it sport the most bets of any NJ online sportsbook? No, definitely not, but it ranks near the center, and especially excels in the soccer market.
Concerning gaming formats, BetStars supports most of the standard fare including direct stakes, totals, futures, parlays, and props. Surprisingly, teasers are not available on the website. To us, this indicates that BetStars perhaps has not completely adapted to the NJ marketplace, as teasers are predominantly tied to popular American sport such as soccer and basketball.
Additionally, players big on betting props might be somewhat frustrated, as while BetStars NJ does provide a wholesome variety of vague team and individual stakes, that amount remains less than half what we’ve seen at other novels.
In-play, a gambling format where bettors may place wagers on a match in-progress, is all the rage of late. So it was little surprise to find the option featured front-and-center on the BetStars NJ program.
BetStars NJ does a serviceable, but barely mind-blowing, job with in-play. Technically, everything seems up to snuff, with stakes updating fluidly, and the host responding swiftly to in-play wager asks, so much sothat there was never really a question of whether we’d be shut out of a line.
Yet, for a European operator with oodles of cash, we just expected a bit more variety. In equity, for the larger contests the app does offer an adequate swatch of in-play options, and we are sure that amount will enhance even further over time, but the average contest might only support half-a-dozen in-play bets or less. Better than nothing, but hardly enough to distinguish BetStars NJ in the pack.
Thanks to the money out attribute on BetStars NJ, players now have a legitimate way to quickly modulate their risk. Cash out works pretty much how one might expect, granting players the option on straight and parlay bets (pre-game and live) to Get Out Of Dodge, so to speak, locking up less money they would if they won, but over they would if the bet was dropped.
The exact amount of a cash out is a reflection of their initial bet dimensions and the present in-play odds. For instance, if the Philadelphia Eagles are ransacking Atlanta Falcons 35 — 10 at halfway, and you bet the Eagles, nicely out a cash will probably pay near the amount if the bet was actually won. Flip the script and you may find a couple bucks back for every hundred .
Spin & Bet
What would a Stars program be without some sort of slot machine mechanic?
Spin & Bet is perfect for action junkies that don’t mind giving up a little for the chance of winning a lot. How it works is that players allocate 10 percent of the bet to the fates. Then, BetStars NJ determines via RNG when the remaining 90% of the wager will obtain an enhanced payout, if it win. A little less than half time (47.7%) it won’t, but the other times, it’ll receive a bump between 1.2x and 10x.
Obviously the odds of hitting a top multipler are significantly lower compared to a more compact augmentation. As an example, the likelihood of landing 1.5x are a decent 7.5%, but gamers only have a 1 in 1,000 chance of scoring that elusive 10x multiplier.
Give BetStars NJ charge for implementing a feature that introduces an additional element of fun to sports betting, which on average will see players trade 10% of the wager for augmented payouts more than half the time — not bad.
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BetStars NJ promos
There is perhaps no other NJ online sportsbook that will promotions as well as BetStars NJ. Beyond its successful welcome package, the program offers players a multitude of ways to boost their chances of succeeding. Its promotional vehicles run the gamut from little on-the-fly bonuses, to season long occasions designed with maximum perspiration in your mind.
Here’s a quick glimpse of the Kinds of promos players can expect on the regular:
Matched free bet: Bet a certain amount, receive a free bet in accordance with the size of the initial wager. For example, BetStars NJ rolled out a promo at start where players would receive a $5 free wager on their initial $25 at wagers, weekly. Expect more of those easy, yet generous, promotional kinds in the future.
Deposit bonus: Deposit a particular amount and receive a percentage bonus, capped at a predetermined amount. Usually comes affixed using a small wagering requirement.
Odds Boost: More often occurring event than marketing, BetStars NJ often grants players better odds on an array of prop bets for popular competitions. Be on the watch for the crimson fire emblem beside an event, as that indicates Odds Boosts stakes are available.
Super Boost: Similar to Odds Boosts, except more tailored toward gamblers. Instead of winning improved payouts on straight bets, players that opt-in to Super Boosts will net a larger score whenever they strike a parlay.
Beyond the above, we’ve also seen the occasional high-value one-off. A good example would be 100/1 Super Bowl Winner, which provided players 100/1 odds on the first $5 of a Super Bowl future bet. That is a pretty major deal considering several teams were listed at 10/1 or better, opening the door for players to acquire over 10x what they’d normally.
It was recently announced that PokerStars NJ will be transitioning away from its current VIP program, and we all expect BetStars NJ to perform the same. In its stead will be Stars Rewards, a loyalty program that tailors rewards around the way players wager, across all TSG solutions.
In its heart, the program relies around bringing enough rewards points through real-money perform to fill up a progress bar and earn a Chest. In the Chest will be a swatch of personalized rewards, which might include StarsCoin (which will be the organization’s virtual currency), free play, and other prizes.
But let us step back for a second, as saying that the benefits are wholly personalized would be a small misnomer. Instead, it’s more of a personalized range of rewards, together with the exact prizes inside that range depending on opportunity. There are six degrees of Chests, ranging from a Red Chest, which can hold up to $50 in rewards, to a Platinum Chest, which is potentially worth $1,000. However, winning the maximum amount is just 1 in 10,000 crapshoot. More generally, Red Chests will probably be appreciated at a under per year, and even Platinum Chests will just be worth $62 or less 95% of their time, with additional featured rewards (which can be offered frequently ) bolstering the ordinary prize sum.
In order to bring in Chest updates players will first have to win four Chests in a day. They could facilitate the process of making updates by applying Boosts, which twice the rate at which rewards points are earned. If this all sounds complicated, it’s — or at least the internal workings are. But in terms of earning rewards, it’s as simple as wagering real-money on the program and seeing what you get.
We expect Stars Rewards to go live across all TSG goods by the end of 2018.
Customer service BetStars NJ offers an array of support options, with a few being more helpful than others. For the most frequent inquiries there is a FAQ, that is fairly well laid out and covers a diverse array of topics.
For gamers needing more personalized care, their best bet might be to contact an agent via Live Chat. Wait times to get in touch with an agent were on the brief side, nevertheless, responses often took some time, and we got the feeling which more often than not, support was not properly equipped to answer our trickier inquiries. Nevertheless, they were pleasant enough and did at least seem to be creating a solid effort.
There is also a touch service form, which appears to be bugged, as we weren’t able to use it. In theory, players can utilize this form to compose messages to encourage, which will be responded to via email. Together with their message, players are encouraged to select relevant classes and sub-categories, so that it’ll be easier for help to kick the question to the proper department, leading to a quicker turnaround time.
BetStars NJ does allow players to call in directly. Rather they must request a callback.
All in all, our support experience was a mixed bag, and we anticipate somewhat better.
More about BetStars
After Amaya’s purchase of PokerStars in June 2014, the business began exploring opportunities outside of poker, turning its attention partially to sports wagering verticals. In August of the next calendar year, the iGaming behemoth bought daily dream sports (DFS) site Victiv, afterwards rebranding it as StarsDraft.
The newly-minted StarsDraft had its own official U.S. launch in September 2015, competing with the likes of industry giants FanDuel and DraftKings. Only one month later, but the business made a decision to limit operations to just four countries, citing regulatory worries.
Following StarsDraft’s entry to the DFS marketplace, the business pushed forward towards offering full-on sports gambling in jurisdictions outside of the U.S., where the sector remained explicitly illegal. While Stars had shot its first sports bet back in March 2015, it didn’t spin off its sportsbook as a standalone site until that November, when it bought the BetStars.com domain.
1 month after, the operation went live, offering 23 betting markets, such as eSports. The site was initially powered by tech supplied by UK sports stage provider Amelco.
True to form, PokerStars soon began innovating in the space, launching a characteristic called Spin & Bet — a hybrid sports game that bore similarities to the popular Spin & Go poker games.
Additionally, it started fusing poker with sports wagering, offering betting odds on the PCA Main Event final table and the 25K High Roller. Other innovations followed, like BetStars Sports Jackpots, a mix between DFS and real money tournaments.
PokerStars launched its online poker merchandise in New Jersey in 2016 via a venture with Atlantic City’s Resorts. When sports betting was made legal in the state, it continued its connection with the casino, launching its BetStars NJ Android program on September 19, 2018.
PokerStars’ sports was the eighth sports betting app to start from the Garden State, and was part of a flurry of sportsbooks to go live during the time period.
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