Skillz CEO Andrew Paradise is flanked by KCBS Morning Anchors Susan Leigh Taylor and Stan Bunger

Frni Beyer, KCBS

Smartphone Jocks

San Francisco Company helps fuel mobile eSports boom...

KCBS Radio Morning News
March 15, 2018 - 9:41 am

That guy sitting across from you on BART might not just be killing time playing a game on his iPhone. He might be competing and making money.

There's a worldwide explosion of competitive game-playing underway, fueled by the ubiquity of the smartphone. The category known as "mobile eSports" is booming. People aren't just playing games on their phones--they're competing with others, and in some cases, making money at it.

KCBS Morning Anchors Stan Bunger and Susan Leigh Taylor interviewed Andrew Paradise, the CEO of San Francisco-based Skillz, who provides a platform for mobile eSports. Among other things, it allows game publishers to stage tournaments, stream the action, and sell advertising.

To Paradise, the multi-billion dollar video gaming industry built on personal computers and consoles is only the opening act. "There are 700 million computers out there worldwide," Paradise told Stan and Susan. "There are 4 billion smartphones and tablets."

While the mobile eSports sector may not yet be as big and visible as "traditional" sports or other video games, Paradise says he can already see the future. He says last year, a person playing a mobile bowling game ranked among the top five money-winners in ANY form of bowling.

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