Phil Hellmuth Odds Calculator App

The best poker odds calculator available for iPhones and iPads is currently the one Phil Hellmuth has put his name to. It’s anyone’s guess how long this will be the case – new apps are being developed at a rate of about one every couple of weeks, although many fail to offer anything new. The Poker Brat’s app gets our vote mainly because it’s simple to use, accurate and free. For many players, this is all we really need.

App Approaches

Odds calculator apps come in many different shapes and sizes. They have come a long way since the early days of the iPhone but there are still a few out there that will tell you that your odds of winning with QQ from 1st position at a table with 5 other players and QKA on the flop are 32.6%.

However, there are just as many people reviewing poker calculator apps on iTunes and reporting that they’ve found the probabilities they give to be wrong when in fact they are right, or close enough at least. Part of the problem is that there are at least three ways you can calculate poker odds:

  1. Based on ‘bottom-up’ probabilities
  2. By simulating lots of different possible hands and ‘observing’ the results (e.g. Poker Cruncher)
  3. Using actual data from millions of real online poker hands

Of these only the third feels like it might risk being inaccurate where only a small sample of hands is available on which to base results. The Phil Hellmuth calculator appears to use the first of these approaches.

Features

Most Texas Hold’em poker calculator apps will let you choose whether results are displayed as percentages or standards odds ratios. Beyond this additional features may include:

  • Odds calculation where hands are unknown
  • Option to specify a range for hands where you have sufficient confidence about the cards a player holds
  • The ability to add and remove players at any time
  • Add information like which players have folded their cards
  • Probabilities at different stages in a hand: pre-flop, flop, turn and river

Of these the Phil Hellmuth app will not do hand ranges or let you mess about much with players’ statuses. If you want these extra features and other nice additions to the standard odds calculator then you’re looking at something more like a poker strategy app. The best one available for mobile phones and tablets currently is the one by PokerCruncher, which has quizzes as well as many other features.

The downside to the more complicated apps is that you can spend so long inputing the information you have about a given hand that they become somewhat impractical in live situations, whether on line or at home. This is where the strength of a free poker odds calculator app like Phil’s comes in handy – you can get some sensible looking probabilities out of it in less time than it takes 10 people to check a bet, which means that you may just be able to use the information it gives you.