Betting with friends is currently handled mainly through social media networks. Friends create a group on WhatsApp, Telegram etc. to share bets, place bets together (or against each other) and for friendly team rivalry banter.
The issue with this method is that it requires a fair bit of app-hopping. Group members will be bouncing around different bookmaker apps, while using a mobile web browser to catch the latest news and then have to return to the social media app to post their screenshots/opinions/bets.
Well, there are developers out there who are working on producing a specialised betting app for friends and communities to:
- Place group bets effectively
- Bet against each other
- Chat about bets and Sporting events
Social Betting Apps
There are already apps in the App Store and Google Play Store that has an element of betting with friends. However, as this is a new concept, these apps are far from perfect and are still very much work in progress. Here’s some that we have checked out and what we thought of them.
WagerLab claim to be the “number one betting app for peer-to-peer sports betting”. With the lack of competition currently, they may very well be correct.
The main issue with this app is that it is American based. This is very much evident in the categories that are available to bet on. These are:
- Celebrity betting 💃
- NBA 🏀
- MLB ⚾️
- NHL 🏒
- Soccer ⚽️
- MMA 🥊
- KBO ⚾️
The soccer section does include all of the major leagues around Europe, including Premier League and Championship. Lower tiered leagues in the UK were not included, nor were the Scottish leagues.
The app has good features attached to it, allowing users to bet against each other across a number of predefined markets. More markets can be made available with a monthly subscription.
There’s no money handling here. All stakes set are done on a points based system, which has no monetary value attached to it. If it is agreed the points value represents a monetary one, the financial transaction would need to be done outside of the app, via cash-in-hand, a private bank transfer or a PayPal payment, for example.
The lack of sports such as golf, horse racing and tennis loses its overall appeal to the UK market. However, if friends are looking to place football or US sports bets against each other, or looking to compete for fun with other users around the world, this app would be worth a download.
This is an app we stumbled across when researching the field of social sports betting apps. It is a football sweepstake based app that also has head to head betting integrated in to it as well.
This is a real money betting app, where users have to deposit funds in to their Betsquad account to use in order to bet with other people.
The app caters for major football tournament sweepstakes, as well as first goalscorer. In the first goalscorer sweepstakes, an upcoming match is selected and the players are evenly distributed between the number of entrants to the sweepstake.
Head to head bets are based on the outright to win markets on upcoming football games. A stake is set and can then either be accepted or declined by the person invited to take the bet on. Betsquad take a 5% fee from the winnings for providing the service. Because of this service, Betsquad are a full licensed and regulated by the UK gambling commission.
All of this sounds pretty good. However when it came to testing the app out, we could not get it to launch. We found ourselves stuck on an introductory page with a message saying downloading matches, with a loading wheel that continually whirled round until we decide to close the app.
Therefore currently, this is not one we can recommend as it does not work. This may be a short term problem, so we will keep checking back to see if it kicks back in to action again.
SkyBet Group Bets
A fairly new feature has been added to the SkyBet app, allowing users to share selections in a group setting.
Users can join up to 5 Groups of up up to 50 people to create bets and all members of the group can contribute to the selections within it.
Each user can then choose to add that bet to their SkyBet bet slip, ignore it, or modify it as they see fit and then add it to the bet slip.
This feature does not allow people to bet against each other. Instead it is more of a way of collaborating with family/friends effectively to come up with a bet made up of multiple selections.
SkyBet and the SkyBet group bets feature come recommended by us as a credible bookmaker and service. They are not known for offering strong prices in their day to day offerings, but the service is of high quality and they offer out frequent price leading boosts, especially at the weekends.
The IBetU app is designed to be a bet tracker for personal bets between friends, family and colleagues. It also acts as a receipt of the actual time and terms of the bet, with one person needed to propose the bet and the other to accept it.
It is a very simple concept, with users being required to simply fill in a field with what they want to bet on and then state how much they are prepared to put down on it in terms of money.
A time limit is then placed on the bet and then it is ready to be sent to the other part to either accept or dismiss.
This is another app where money is not exchanged directly through it. This is purely a way to keep a record of the bet and the acceptance of it. The app has no feature to actually settle it from a financial perspective.
In terms of the interface, it’s a bit clunky and the public feed of bets is a pretty worthless added extra, in my opinion. I have no interest in knowing that Martha has bet Quincy £5 on whether or not it will rain in Texas tomorrow.
This isn’t an app I’ll be using anytime soon. However, if you bet with friends a lot and find that some of them have short memories, this could well be of some use in giving them a handy reminder to pay up.
Apps Not Live Or Launched
The apps mentioned above are the main apps that can be downloaded from the App Store and Play Store that we think are worth a mention in relation to betting with friends.
There are also others like Crew.bet and Youbetme, who both had promising ideas in this genre, but are yet to launch a finished product.
Crew.bet were aiming in becoming the WhatsApp of the sports betting world and Youbetme were attempting to allow users to place bets with anyone, anytime, anywhere. Youbetme has received $5.1 million in investment, but seeing as though that was back in 2014, this project looks like a none-starter.