Free sports gaming app GameOn recently launched in the U.S. to target casual fans by offering free-to-play games that are legal in all 50 states, but which still offer cash prizes. GameOn functions like a betting platform, only without a monetary stake from the user. Players are prompted to answer a few questions to predict the action and accumulate points, which can lead to prizes from $100 up to $100,000.
GameOn has support from Sportradar, investment from soon-to-launch Pacific Atlantic Ventures, and national campaigns with Burger King and Motorola. It also participated in last spring’s Next Gen Arena, a sports tech showcase hosted by TPG Sports Group. Sportradar has selected GameOn for its Acceleradar program and will allow the start-up to use its stats and score data.
GameOn app interface examples. (Courtesy of GameOn)
Matt Bailey, the founder and CEO of GameOn, reported that the beta version included more than 600 entries and 4,000 picks with one-third of the user base using the app to make picks daily. The company is emphasizing social play with built-in chat features.
“There’s a significant opportunity in the way GameOn enables brands to reach a massive unserved audience in sports and entertainment,” Pacific Atlantic Ventures’ Jock Percy said in a statement. “The app’s clean and intuitive interface makes it fun and simple for anyone to sign on, start playing, and bet on sports for free. It’s a compelling socially acceptable platform and perfectly coincides with Americans’ fast growing appetite for sports betting.”
For as much hullabaloo as sports betting has generated in the U.S., wagering is still only legal in a few states and, in many cases, only in a few physical locations within those states. A casual gaming app with no financial risk could piggyback on the excitement of betting, but with wider appeal. GameOn’s early studies found that only nine percent of beta users reported that their favorite team was a factor in using the app, a fact that speaks well of its potential success.