Umoo is a virtual stock-trading platform that is, admittedly, a little late to the market. There are several virtual stock-trading games, including a prominent app from Marketwatch called the Virtual Stock Exchange. Realizing that, I wasn't sure if there was any more room for a game like Umoo.
I'm still not entirely sure.
Umoo (pronounced You-Moo) was originally started in Israel, but it has quickly made its way to the United States. In fact, the game originally only allowed gamers to trade on U.S. markets. But after building a small following, the company realized that it wasn't maximizing its monetization potential, so it opened it up to global markets to attract English-speaking gamers around the world. And that's where it finds itself today.
The premise Umoo is a virtual stock-trading game. But it does it a little differently than most of its competitors. Rather than ask you to invest in a handful of companies and see how you did after the market closes, Umoo tries to replicate a real stock-trading environment by providing real-time trades. So, if your portfolio includes Best Buy and its share price is tanking for some reason, you can dump the stock and buy something new. It makes Umoo more realistic.
Winning some cash Although you're given 100,000 virtual points to trade with in free games, Umoo's real appeal is in its cash games. Those games, which are created by Umoo employees, require all players to pay an entry fee before they can join the game. After investing the cash, each player is given the same amount of money to invest with during the timed game. The players with the highest returns on investment win cash prizes. Paid games run "24/5", since global markets aren't open on weekends.
I was a little disappointed with Umoo's profit-sharing plan. Games can be played for as little as $1, but some go up to $100. In either case, Umoo is taking the lion's share of the cash. For example, one $5 game that's currently available in the app, awards the winner $11.96 for achieving the highest return on their investment. Umoo has, so far, collected $65. An Umoo representative told me that the percentages it takes from each game decline as the cash pool increases, but I noticed a sizable discrepancy in every game between the amount of cash available and what the person actually wins. If the company wants to attract more users, it needs to pay more cash.
During my meeting with Umoo, the company was also quick to remind me that it is legal to play. Even though cash does exchange hands, the company said Umoo is a game of skill, rather than chance, making it legal across the globe.… Read more