PokerStars USA is continuing to work behind the scenes to get its service back up and running following an unprecedented downtime spanning four days which affected its online poker, casino, and sportsbooks products. The disruption started on Friday with reports from players that they could not access the games.
PokerStars PA and PokerStars MI, as well as Stars Casino and FOX Bet Sportsbook, went back quietly on Monday, but the company’s online poker client in New Jersey remains offline. MTTs have also not yet returned. Other sites, including FanDuel, were not affected by the downtime.
When the outage was first reported on Friday, PokerStars released a statement on social media, informing players that it was due to an “unscheduled maintenance”. After failing to resolve the issue on the same day, the operator was forced to cancel all MTTs for the whole weekend, with an aim to bring the normal schedule back on Monday at 10am EST, but things didn’t turn out as planned.
PokerStars PA and PokerStars MI were back online on the target day, but players were only able to access cash games, Spin and Gos, and Sit and Gos. MTTs remain unavailable and the entire NJ client is still down as well.
In a statement issued on Monday, PokerStars assured its customers that their personal data remain safe and are not affected by the disruption. While the downtime occurred, players were still able to log in and access the cashier across all verticals. The company also made it clear that the outage was not connected to a data breach.
PokerStars Outage Leads to Surge in Traffic at Competing Sites
Unscheduled service interruptions are not uncommon in online poker though they do not usually last longer than one or two days. The four-day outage on PokerStars USA which extended through the weekend quite had an impact on traffic, with its competitors enjoying high numbers. Players turned to other sites to continue playing resulting in a surge in traffic at both BetMGM USA and WSOP USA.
During the downtime, PA sites recorded decent gains, with traffic up 30% and 38% at WSOP PA and BetMGM Poker PA respectively. BetMGM Poker MI, PokerStars’ only competitor in the Wolverine State, also recorded a 27% increase in traffic on the same period.
These traffic increases will only be momentary as players are expected to return to PokerStars once things get back to normal. Nevertheless, competitors should make the most out of this ongoing downtime as it provides a key opportunity for them to grow their customer base.
PokerStars Still Working Towards Full Resumption of Services
The PA and MI online poker rooms as well as the affected casinos and sportsbooks quietly returned late on Monday with no official announcement from PokerStars. As of this writing, the operator has yet to issue a follow-up statement on the status of its services, but it’s understood the company’s tech team is working hard in the background to get their services back on track.
With MTTs still unavailable, PokerStars staff tested out the server with a couple of freerolls on Monday and the trial was likely successful. Hopefully, all services will fully resume this week.
To make up for the inconvenience and disruption, PokerStars is expected to offer something to its customers once the normal service is restored. It could be in the form of freerolls, similar to what it offered when it faced a two-day outage back in August. During that time, the operator hosted a freeroll in PA, MI, and NJ awarding 100 seats, each worth $10, to the Sunday Storm.