A new invite-only iPhone app lets people gamble real money on matches of ‘Call of Duty’ and ‘Fortnite’

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Courtesy 1v1Me

  • New app 1v1Me will allow video gamers to place bets on “Call of Duty” and “Fortnite” in one-on-ones.
  • The players must link to their bank accounts and agree on a wager before starting the game.
  • The founders said the COVID-19 pandemic pushed them to create their idea for a betting app.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Players can now place wagers on one-on-one video games using a new app called 1v1Me that was inspired by at-home betting during the pandemic.

The app, first reported on by TechCrunch, will allow gamers to place wagers in one-on-one matches on “Call of Duty” and “Fortnite” while at home.

1v1Me launched with well-known content creators, such as NoisyButters, joining in. It is starting off small and supporting just two video games, so that it’s a “much more controlled environment,” said founder Anthony Geranio in an interview with Insider.

To participate, you have to get an invite to play from a content creator on the app. Geranio said the app now has nearly 12,000 people waiting to play.

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Inside the 1v1Me app. Courtesy of 1v1Me

Once invited, 1v1Me confirms a player’s identity. Then, players must add a bank account to the app and agree with an opponent on how much to wager. 1v1Me then places the money from their bets into escrow. The gamers use livestreaming service Twitch when they play the game. This allows others to watch the match and 1v1Me to monitor it to ensure it’s fair and determine who wins. Once concluded, 1v1Me transfers the money to the winner’s bank account.

To place a bet on a game, a player must be 18. Minors can still play with the app, but they can’t wager on the match, the founder said. He added that the app only operates in the 48 states where it’s legal to wager on skill-based games.

Read more: A video game tutor who makes up to $5,000 a month shares how he built a career teaching people how to win at ‘League of Legends’

Before launching, Geranio and co-founder Alex Emmanuel raised $2 million in financing. The COVID-19 pandemic pushed them to create the app, Geranio said, as they saw friends spending their time at home placing bets on online poker and playing video games.

Geranio said his mission for the company is “to help more gamers make a living from esports.” Geranio said he wants to generate the next wave of gaming content creators on popular platforms like YouTube and Twitch.

“Kids today are waking up and want to become YouTube stars, versus doctors and astronauts,” he said. “The No. 1 place to make YouTube content is in gaming.”

Gamer NoisyButters, who also invested in the app, tweeted a photo with the new app Monday, saying she used to put her one-on-one record in “Call of Duty” on her XBox biography, but “now there’s an app for it.”

Live esports tournaments faced struggles amid the pandemic, and the industry, which was set to hit $1 billion in 2020, missed the mark as leagues forfeited their arena events but kept the seasons alive. Since the US Supreme Court lifted the federal ban on sports betting in 2018, consulting agency Activate predicted people could bet as much as $150 billion per year by 2023.

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The EU has approved Microsoft’s $7.5 billion purchase of Bethesda

BEIJING, CHINA - SEPTEMBER 25: (CHINA OUT) CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella gives a lecture about dream, struggle and creation at Tsinghua University on September 25, 2014 in Beijing, China. CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella visited China for the first time on Thursday.
Satya Nadella announced the acquisition in September 2020.

  • The EU has approved Microsoft’s $7.5 billion purchase of Bethesda Softworks’ parent company.
  • Future releases will likely be Xbox exclusives and not on PlayStation, with a few exceptions.
  • The EU said there were no competition concerns for Microsoft’s largest-ever video game purchase.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Despite the pandemic, video game revenue reportedly exceeded sport and film combined in 2020.

According to data from the International Data Corporation reported by MarketWatch, the industry surged 20% to $179.7 billion.

The European Union has now approved Microsoft’s $7.5 billion purchase of ZeniMax Media, the parent company of game publisher Bethesda Softworks.

Microsoft’s acquisition is the company’s largest-ever purchase in the video game sector, Expansion reported.

When the tech giant first announced its plans in September, analysts said Microsoft was looking to diversify its business with more revenue from consumer products.

“As a proven game developer and publisher, Bethesda has seen success across every category of games,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a press release announcing the acquisition in September last year. “And together, we will further our ambition to empower the more than three billion gamers worldwide.”

Bethesda is well-known for games including “Fallout,” “The Elder Scrolls,” and “Doom.”

All of Bethesda’s games will now come under Microsoft’s Xbox Studios umbrella.

The company said in September that the release of all PS5 games already announced by Bethesda would continue, but that the remainder of the games would be looked at on a “case-by-case basis,” with some new releases moving exclusively to Xbox.

The tech giant will also be able to incorporate Zenimax’s Bethesda games into its Xbox Game Pass cloud-based video game catalog.

Microsoft first requested EU approval on January 29 and the European Commission has now ruled that it will not pose competition problems to other providers.

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How video games can actually make you a better fighter pilot, according to a fighter pilot

Air Force Mike Holmes Twitch video games
Air Force Gen. Mike Holmes, head of Air Combat Command, flying a F-15, plays his son, 1st Lt. Wade Holmes, flying an F-16, in an air combat video game.

  • Much of the training fighter pilots do takes place in a flight simulator, which is much like a video game.
  • That means video games, in moderation, can help with processing the information and making the quick decisions pilots need to make, according to Justin Lee, an active-duty F-35A pilot.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Does playing video games and desktop simulators, such as Microsoft Flight Sim, prepare you to become a fighter pilot?

As a fighter pilot, much of our training takes place in a simulator, which is the ultimate video game. Stepping into these rooms, you’re dwarfed by a giant sphere that projects a 360-degree view of your surroundings.

After climbing into an exact replica of the cockpit, a motor then pushes you into the middle of the sphere and it’s fights on – you’re anywhere in the world with any weapons you want and adversaries that can be dialed-up in difficulty as needed. And it’s not just you in there, other pilots are in their own pods fighting alongside you on the same virtual battlefield.

Flying a modern fighter is difficult – these machines are designed to merge man and machine into a lethal combination that can have a strategic level of impact on the battlefield. The stick and throttle alone have dozens of buttons on them.

Most of these buttons can give five or more commands – forward, back, left, right, and down – as well as short pushes and long pushes and multiple master-modes that completely change the function of each button: It’s a PlayStation or X-box controller on steroids.

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A US Air Force student pilot in a T-38C Talon flight simulator at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, November 8, 2018.

Growing up in the ’80s and ’90s, my generation was one of the first to have widespread access to video games. Nintendo, Xbox, PlayStation, N64-I played them all growing up. Using a controller was second nature by the time I got to pilot training.

Now trainers like the T-6 and T-38 don’t have a lot of buttons on the stick and throttle – they’re designed to teach students how to fly. However, the F-16 was a huge jump where we learned not just to fly the aircraft, but to employ it as a weapons system.

There we learned what, at the time, seemed like complex sequences to track targets, launch missiles, and drop bombs.

What I noticed was that my time playing video games allowed me to synthesize information while quickly and accurately passing decisions I made off to the jet. Many of my classmates also played video games growing up and collectively, the feedback we received was that we were a lot more advanced than our instructors were when they were in our position.

Now, a decade later, I can say the next generation, who grew up with smartphones and iPads, have an even greater capacity to process the multiple streams of information coming at them than older pilots like myself. The avionics in jets like the F-35 – which are essentially two large iPads glued together – are second nature to them.

So, to answer the question, do video games help prepare you to become a pilot? The answer is yes, to an extent.

For future fighter pilots out there, I would say a couple of hours a week can help with processing information, making quick decisions, and accurately passing it off to the controls. Anything more is likely a detriment in that it is taking time away from other things you could be working on.

As for the type of video game, it doesn’t matter. Realistic fighter simulators like DCS aren’t any better than Mario Kart: The procedures and tactics in civilian sims are off by enough that it won’t give you an advantage by the time you’re flying the real thing. If it helps stoke the passion, great, that’s the most important trait for success, but not playing them won’t put you at a disadvantage.

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