SEARCHES for online poker games grew by more than 3,000 per cent last year, figures have revealed.

Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, more than ever people are wanting to play online games with their friends and family.

Online poker companies, such as PokerStars have even created private tables for friends to test their skills.

According to data from Pi Datametrics, the term “play poker online with friends” saw one of the biggest year-on-year growths on Google in the UK last year, compared to 2019.

Other online gambling searches which have increased include “virtual grand national” and “online slot games”.

An increase in people using their smartphones has also been seen, with 46 per cent of people in the UK claiming to have increased use of their smartphone since 2019.

And this is only going to increase. Data predicts that by 2024, the number of monthly active smartphone users is projected to grow steadily and reach 61.06 million individuals.

This would represent an increase of over 12 million new users from 41.09 million in 2015.

Online games are quickly becoming the go-to social activity people are playing with friends and family.

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