Which? Trading software 2010
This is a comprehensive review of The Geeks Toy which I have been writing for some time. I apologise to TG that it has taken me so long to post this, I had wanted to ensure that I got a good amount of time trading using the platform before rushing to publish my thoughts.
Some background: I’ve been trading professionally for almost two years. Having always had a fascination with gambling and potential money making angles I stumbled upon trading through an advert I read for Bet Trader, BT4 then went on to be my trading tool of choice for some time. I may not be in the league of some of the really big players, but I do make a decent enough living from it, and I put in longish hours to achieve the results I do.
For one reason and another I’ve had cause to use 5 different Trading platforms in the past 6 months. BT4 which I used for over a year. BA which I trialled for 7 days, ***** which I used for around a 2 week period, BTE which I dabbled with for a couple of days, and The Toy which I’ve been using now for several months. Because of this, and because I trade so many markets I feel I’m in an excellent position to offer a fair appraisal of The Toy (which from here on in I’ll simply refer to it as TT).
My first attempts at using TT were a tad frustrating. I’m a creature of habit and don’t embrace change very easily. On first loading the application I was a little overwhelmed by the array of options and layouts etc. For me simple had always been better, I’m a firm believer that to trade proficiently you shouldn’t require vast tools at your disposal. That said, once I had invested a short amount of time setting it up I was ready to begin trading for small stakes. The initial setup process was made much less painful since TG had had the foresight to include some standard Layouts, my starting position of choice was a layout similar to that of BT4. My current setup hasn’t ventured much from that original one bar a few small tweaks here and there.
One of the first things I noticed when trading with TT was the speed of the application. I’m fortunate enough to have a very fast internet connection, despite this I found all other trading software products to be sluggish by comparison to TT. I have my settings for price display set to ‘complete’ and it is literally blisteringly quick at both displaying data and submitting bets. In a fast moving market this is paramount. I’ve actually got so used it now that I don’t really notice but I’m sure if I were to use something else for a day I would! My API stats for refresh rate are very consistent at 15-46. I occasionally trade Australian Horse racing markets, something I’ve only been able to do with TT, any other product is simply to slow to trade effectively from half way around the planet. While these markets are nowhere near the speed of their UK counterparts they are at least now tradable and as a result I’m able to add another type of market to my arsenal.
I also do a fair amount of In Running trading. I usually back first and then lay off lower. I prefer to lay and then hedge. Its a style of trading which suits me better. It means that I can create the green and then wait for a much lower price to hedge at without having to risk any capital beyond the initial trade. BT4 could be frustrating when attempting to implement this strategy, having created the green I’d have to wait for the price to drop and then hit that green amount at the right time. The green amount was always set to LTP for me and quite often you’d miss the price and end up with nothing. TT has the profit and loss column and you can hedge that way, so actually getting the price is much much easier than it ever was before. BD has a similar feature, but the ladder autocentres and makes it a complete nightmare to hedge at a lower price. It was horrible to use in such instances.
My In Running trading was always a little difficult. I operate a 1 screen setup (doing my bit for the planet). I’d have to have a racecard up and flick between the trading software and that to find the silks. TT has the jockey silks on the ladder and on the grid, it also includes useful information such as the Jockey and Trainer, and the draw number. Trading IR can be a little hairy, every second counts, and TT has made the process a whole new ballgame, simpler and faster.
A major drawback of every other trading tool for me was always the number of preselected stakes you could have. Like most people I use different stakes at different price ranges (I’ll trade at any price if there is the possibility of green). A typical example of 6 stake buttons might be: £500, £200, £150, £100, £50, £25. Which you might think is fine, but once I go IR I want entirely different stakes, nothing as big as those. So for traders like myself who switch between Prerace and IR 6 stake buttons was extremely limiting, and 8 may not even be enough. With TT I can have as many as I like. Problem solved!
Clearly a lot of thought has gone into some of the less obvious features of TT, having quick results available for example, or being able to see the projected SP at a glance, or even something as simple as having quick access to what bets you’ve had matched, or bets which are currently unmatched, all in a format which is both functional and pleasing on the eye.
If TT has a failing featurewise then for me it would be having multiple markets open at once. Back in my BT4 days having the tabs for different markets could be useful. With TT it can be a little confusing.
In terms of service TT has thus far been outstanding. Any glitches or bugs have been resolved quickly and efficiently, and suggestions for improvements have been welcomed. Anyone who has been trading for a while who uses TT will instantly realise the level of input that real traders have had in helping shape the program. The programmers willingness in adopting this approach is extremely commendable and in my opinion has reaped dividends.
Now I’ve read my fair share of reviews in Which? magazine and I’m fairly sure this is the part where they talk about price. So lets do just that. How much does this cost? Nothing! zip, nada, not a penny. And I read tonight that this is to remain the case for at least the whole of 2010!
So in summary: I’m of the opinion that TT is simply the best trading tool available on the market. It’s the fastest, it looks the best, it’s the easiest to use, the service is excellent, and it’s absolutely free of charge. What matters most to me as a trader? The amount of money that I can make, bigger green and smaller red. That’s it at the end of the day. I’m not interested in the politics of the fractured trading community I’m only interested in my Profit and Loss and I firmly believe that since I starting using TT my profits have increased as a result. I wouldn’t use anything else and I would highly recommend TT. Buy it it’s awesome! Oh wait, keep your hand in your pocket it’s free!