There comes a point when all Betfair traders realise the Betfair website platform is quite limited in it’s ability to take advantage of market movements, place entries and exits quickly, and green up accurately when closing out a trade. This is the point when you begin looking at decent trading software for one click orders, charts and various other essential tools.
Betfair trading software is certainly not essential for a newbie trader, nor for people only using certain methods (such as my LTD method), as full market depth is not needed, you might just need to enter and exit without any split second urgency involved, or without any need to determine what moves and trends are under way in the market.
But if you begin trading horses pre-off, or doing tennis in any real volume, software starts to look more and more like a necessary tool, and for some methods it’s definitely essential. Over the years I think I have tried every single Betfair trading software platform out there, and for me it comes down to three main contenders, all three having their own unique benefits and drawbacks, making it a fairly personal choice for each trader but I will of course offer my personal opinion.
Gruss Betting Assistant
Gruss gets my vote for the best all-round trading software package of them all. The primary reason for this is price. I have always felt Bet Angel (mentioned next below) was the most powerful software and it probably still is, BUT it is expensive, and this is why Gruss takes my vote for best Betfair trading software available currently.
Gruss is a fantastic piece of software. The price is a very reasonable £6 per month or £60 per year. That’s less than half the price of Bet Angel, yet it can do everything Bet Angel can do (except Soccer Mystic which is useless in my opinion anyway).
Gruss has excellent charts, better than Bet Angel (for my way of trading), and everything you need to see when trading horses (main use for software) is clearly displayed right under nose near where you are clicking, this makes split second decisions to back a steamer or lay a drifter as easy and uncomplicated as possible.
This software was built by two brothers, Mark and Gary, and they do a fantastic job of supporting their customers. When you are trading for a living, and when your trading software plays such a vital role in that business, having fast and efficient support staff, people who actually give a damn about your enquiry and do everything they can to help, is of huge importance. Over the years I have found Bet Angel to be very good on supporting their customers, but I must admit they have never been as fast or apparently as caring about their customers as Gruss staff are. Bet Angel is huge, and in my experience whenever a small firm becomes bigger fast (as Bet Angel did, because they really do have a great product) the customer service often sadly lags behind a fair bit. Gruss to me still has that “family business” feel (because it is exactly that) and I love that. But then I am the type of person who goes to a little back street hardware shop for a 3 inch countersunk screw, rather than queuing up behind 200 families in B&Q to buy a blister pack of cheap Chinese mass-produced junk. 🙂
In terms of usability and functionality, I can’t fault the Gruss program in any way, it’s reliable, lightning fast (too fast, I actually slow the defaults down in the settings!), and a pleasure to use. The settings seem much more intuitive and simple to work with than Bet Angel, and you can play with colours and layouts to your heart’s content. I am fussy about how my ladders look when I am trading so I like the flexibility Gruss offers, everything is tunable and customisable. The quick pop-open charts under the ladders are a great idea, and really useful when assessing a horse’s prior trend during the morning before the trading period.
As far as value for money goes, Gruss takes the biscuit.
Having said that, it’s followed fairly closely by Geek’s Toy…
This to me is a Marmite program. Many people absolutely love it, and it gained a massive following due to being free, then very very cheap (a fiver i think) for many years, some time ago now. It is fast and powerful, not as well laid out or as pretty as Gruss, but at the price that didn’t bother many people way back when, so it’s following grew to an army of newbies and semi-professional users (and some pros too of course).
I personally never liked it, as far as the screen layout and colours etc. I wasn’t hard up enough to be pushed into it by a free or very cheap price tag, so I never really tried to use more than a few quick trials when I realised it wasn’t for me. But do bear strongly in mind, I am fussy about colours and stuff like that, I get a LOT of “screen headaches” so if something doesn’t work nicely on my eyes, it’s a bin job for me, and sadly Geek’s Toy didn’t suit my visual needs and therefore never got much of a seat at my trading table.
Having said that, virtually everybody I know who has tried it, liked it. A very good friend of mine uses it daily, and it’s far more powerful than it was in the early days.
Whether or not it’s the best Betfair trading software will always be a personal opinion rather than a fact. However it’s worth noting that Geek’s Toy is the most commonly used trading software package in use today. I am sure the price has a lot to do with that, especially the historically low price which got many traders hooked on it early on in their careers. However, just because it is cheap, don’t think it can’t do everything you need. If you are on a tight budget but you do want to start trading with proper bet automation software, you would be crazy not to try this one out.
I have used Bet Angel for everything from trading horses in running to pre-race scalping, from laying the draw to backing the server when I am trading tennis! Bet Angel is one very powerful package, and with a very nicely organised interface which is easy on the eye.
Peter Webb is a well-known full time Betfair trader and he designed Bet Angel to suit his own trading needs with a heavy emphasis on charting. Over the years he added elements to it for trading football and tennis among other things. I personally find some of these things a bit “gimmicky” but I can’t fault the software in any way.
So why don’t I rate Bet Angel as number one? Well, it’s just the price which grates me. It’s expensive at £150 per year. Yes I can afford to pay it, but I just don’t see why I should when Gruss does everything I need. If Bet Angel was the same price as Gruss, I think they would be fairly even, but I would stick with the small family feel of Gruss I think.
P.S. Just to be fair here, I ought to mention Bet Trader Evolution. The reason it doesn’t factor in my top three is simply because it is browser-based, I prefer locally installed software. For Mac users it’s a great program definitely worth looking at. Just thought I would mention it, I have used it (many years ago now) and I have to say I found it excellent, it’s just the web-based thing which bugs me so I don’t use it. I like locally installed software more than web-based programs. Well worth a look if you are trying out the various trading software packages.