Project by: Alex Britton, Mike Brown, Morten Andersen, Matt Sheerwood
High Concept Statement:
P2P sports betting platform, executed legally
Need or Demand:
Handshake makes betting on sports between peers easy and legal by creating a platform to place bets and a virtual market where real cash can be earned for winning bets and collecting coins. The Handshake model fully complies with gambling laws. Handshake looks to make peer-to-peer sports betting and currency exchange safe and simple.
Product / Service / Solution:
Handshake brings the social aspect of sports gambling to a mobile setting. The app is complete with group leagues, leaderboard and communication features. Furthermore, there are aspects of strategy beyond sports betting present in the software. Users must strategically place bets to continue earning coins and avoid having to turn to the virtual market to acquire more from other users. By creating a peer-to-peer virtual marketplace and providing coins to users for free when they sign up, Handshake creates self-regulated market for users to buy and sell coins. Other betting apps have failed to include a key aspect to betting and a marketplace for exchanging internally, within the app.
Handshake is an app that facilitates sports betting between friends and groups, allowing users to compete for real cash. The service combines the strategy of sporting betting with a unique in-app currency system. Users can bet on a multitude of sporting events in a P2P format, creating a betting environment that is both fun and intimate. The app will be fully featured with live/interactive sports data, messaging between users, and more. The competition between users culminates in the virtual currency marketplace(coins) – adding an element of strategy to the platform. Upon signing up, new users are “gifted” a fixed amount of coins (1,000 coins) – allowing users to place bets for free. Through making wagers, winners and losers will prevail. Inherently, winners will command more of the coin supply, while losers will command less. As a result, losers will be forced to obtain more coins if he/she has the desire to continue placing bets. Thus, Handshake has created a coin marketplace driven by supply and demand. The Handshake coin marketplace will match buyers and sellers to facilitate coin trades. Users can determine the virtual currency’s worth when trading – allowing the coin value to constantly fluctuate. Handshake begins driving operating revenue by charging transaction fees on trades made within the virtual market. Additionally, this system avoids the “casino model” which would include selling coins to users. Furthermore, the app avoids setting dollar amounts for coins and disallows coin buy-backs. This combination avoids legal issues present in the online gambling industry. To further avoid potential legal issues, Handshake also offers users the option to watch advertisements in exchange for free additional coins. Handshake’s value derives from its virtual market and user-to-user exchange facilitation which allows Handshake to charge a service fee for all trades made within the app, the only place where it is possible to trade cash for coins. Other revenue streams such as advertising add value to Handshake by offering users a small amount of free coins by watching advertisements. Our advertisement integration model allows users to watch full-length advertisements in order to earn free coins in the amount of one minimum bet. Users looking to avoid using Handshake’s virtual market will turn to watching advertisements to regain coins, generating views for advertisements and therefore increasing the value of Handshake as an advertising platform.
“Bait” is Handshake’s main competitor as an app that strives to make peer-to-peer betting easier. While Bait does help facilitate betting between users, it does not offer any sort of trade or exchange, meaning that users are making bets where the winner will not necessarily be rewarded with anything once the bet is complete. Once bets are completed through Bait, the losing user must confirm payment to the winner through the app while the agreed upon payment is made outside of the app – using Venmo, PayPal, or cash. Essentially, Bait allows users to place bets with one another the same way they would in person or over the phone, meaning that there isn’t a real need for it in the market. Handshake stands out above its only competitor, Bait, by offering users a free virtual currency to place bets with, a virtual market for users to trade coins for cash amongst themselves, and an option to watch advertisements as an alternative to gaining more coins for free. Unlike Bait, Handshake runs on a model that provides a service to users and advertisers alike, earning Handshake revenue to operate on and generate value for itself.
Handshake earns revenue through in-app advertising and service fees charged to users when trading cash for additional coins amongst themselves. Handshake will charge a 5% transaction fee on all coin trades.