What is ‘Tap’?
To ‘tap’ means to bet all of one’s available funds in a single turn. It appears most often in poker, where it describes the ‘all-in’ bet – a raise of all available chips, forcing other players to match the all-in if they wish to call. The term also appears often in the online casino world, referring to the modern touch screens on mobiles and tablets which require a player to ‘tap’ their chosen selection during the casino games.
If a gambler declares their intention to ‘tap’, they mean they are putting all the chips they have on a single outcome. It usually applies to poker, specifically a no limit game, where the player chooses to wager all their chips on their hand. This ‘tap’ action is more commonly known as betting ‘all-in’, and it means that any subsequent players who wish to call need to meet the same all-in. In most games, this means betting all of their chips – even if they hold more or less than the player who initially ‘tapped’.
In some games, matching an all-in means betting the same amount of the previous bet, perhaps leaving the player who calls with some chips of their own. The tap bet can often be made even if the player who calls the all-in raise has less chips than were placed by the previous player – simply betting all chips is enough to meet an all-in. Betting all chips is a very risky move, as the player’s time at the table could be ended in a single hand. It is usually only done on a very strong hand – it would take a very brave bettor to tap as a bluff!
Often in mobile casinos, to ‘tap’ means to make a selection or action, where touch screens have replaced buttons and computer mice. Therefore, a player might be instructed to ‘tap to spin’ or ‘tap to bet’, meaning to touch the screen lightly to activate their selection.