RealBridge - getting started

RealBridge @ Hamilton

RealBridge is an internet hosted site where you can play bridge. It is an improved version of BBO which you are probably more familiar with, but enhanced so you can see and talk to the other players at the table using the camera and microphone on your computing device. A range of differing computer equipment can be used - computers (Windows or Mac) or tablets (iPad or Android) that has a camera and microphone installed which enables everyone to see and talk to you (you can't however use a Smartphone due to screen size). You can still take part without the camera and microphone options if not fitted but it does lessen the experience a little (Laptops & notebooks generally come fitted with cameras etc. where as desktop computers don't. However computers can be retrofitted with a camera / microphone at a cost of less than $100).

To take part in the practice session or a Club Session of RealBridge is as simple a clicking on a link on the Bridge Clubs web site. This link which isn't displayed here and will be available on the front page of the Club's web site. This link will take you to RealBridge where you will login. There is however no need to pre-register for RealBridge. The login is necessary so RealBridge and Compass ( the regular scoring program at the Hamilton Club ) are able to communicate so scoring information / results will appear in the usual place on the results page and competitions continue.


RealBridge login screen

To join a sessions just click the link that matches your wanted session on the Hamilton Web Sites front page. This link does not become active until 30mins prior to the start time so a good rule of thumb is to aim to login around 15 minutes before the start time. Everyone is welcome to play. When you log in you must enter both your Name and NZ Bridge number as they appear in the Clubs Programme Book.

If you haven’t played on RealBridge before there are two preparation tasks you should do
– first read the RealBridge Guide which is available here
- the second task is to perform the Camera and Audio test below which lets you check the operation of the microphone and camera and enables them so the RealBridge program can make use of them. This is the link to the test program. This is a once only task unless you are having problems.

Don't have a partner ? – Log into RealBridge 15 mins before the session starts, stay in the LOBBY and use the chat box to write to the Director you need a partner. The Director will assist you.

Audio Interference - It is not generally known how sensitive the microphones that come with web cameras are along with the automatic audio level controls they have built in. This means that what to the user of the camera / microphone is a very quite background "noise" can to the rest of the table you are playing at be quite overwhelming. To help keep the ambient noise down at the tables please check for "noise" sources such as radio, TV's open windows & lawn mowers etc. and as much as possible remove or minimise the source. Your fellow players will appreciate your efforts !

Happy Bridge !