snapCard, a currency-changing service that allows users to spend Bitcoin online, has launched a new sports competition organized around the world cup. The deal works like this: Anyone who predicts a perfect bracket for the 2014 world cup (estimated odds of winning the prize: 1 in 274,877,906,944 or over 274 billion) gets a payout of 50BTC (about $30,000 at current exchange rates). The offer mirrors Warren Buffet’s offer of one billion dollars for the same feat.
snapCard is a service similar to that offered by BitPay and CoinBase, but operating from the other side. Customers install a browser widget that intercepts purchases to major websites like Amazon and eBay and allows users to pay the bill in Bitcoins, which snapCard then translates into a currency that the website will accept natively. This approach loses some of the efficiency of Bitcoin as a medium of exchange, but allows for anonymous use, and provides much-needed liquidity to the Bitcoin market, potentially quelling some of the speculative swings. The service is the product of the BOOST startup accelerator, and has handled more than two million dollars’ worth of purchases since launching in 2013.
In order to win the contest, users must be active snapCard users who’ve spent at least $75.00 through the service, and must register by Thursday (the contest began Tuesday). Your odds aren’t particularly good — if all seven billion people on Earth entered and guessed randomly, the odds of a single one of them winning is only about three percent. That said, there is a consolation prize – whoever makes it the longest gets one Bitcoin (currently valued at about $600), second place gets half a Bitcoin, while third and fourth places each get a quarter.
You can sign up for snapCard (and join the contest) at www.joinsnapcard.com.