The service as such is free, but users have to bet credits based on real money in order to play against others. The bet can be set freely along some limits, and the winner will collect the pot, less Trust Solutions’ fee of 10% in normal games or 25% in tournaments. Users can acquire credits by premium SMS or with a credit card on the website. The trick of skill-based gaming is that all games are based on skill rather than luck and played against real persons so it’s not gambling by definition.
The service is currently only available in Sweden. Users can download the game client from the GameJane page, and register to the service via the client. The client includes a lobby system for checking your account status, selecting the games you want to play, finding people to play, practicing games, and checking leader boards. GameJane currently offers 16 rather simple yet classic games (clones of Pac-Man, Scorched Earth, and Tetris and so on), with more coming up. You can play against a friend or pick a random opponent.
Interesting twist is that as all the games are played against another player in real time, your playing may also affect the other’s progress depending on the game, so there is also some head-to-head interaction. Also a neat feature in the service is that you can see actual replays of played matches on the web page. The service uses open source technology Swimmer, and a thin Java client, which pulls most of the functionality and graphics from the server.
There doesn’t seem to be that many users yet, but on the other hand the service is still in its early days. Looks very promising, though, all the basic elements needed for this kind of a service seem to be there already. Once again the success probably boils down to discovery and enabling solid micro-transactions in different countries, issues which are not trivial at all on mobile. It feels GameJane might have more leverage potential as white-label solution targeted to operators, which might allow for wider and faster distribution. As of now there’s, however, no indication of what kind of go-to-market strategy Trust Solutions will use.