This App Lets You Play the Lotto (But You’re Actually Saving Instead)

published Nov 27, 2016
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(Image credit: Michael Dechev)

Typically, saving money and lottery tickets don’t go hand in hand (unless you count the loss of savings due to lottery ticket purchases), but a new app called Long Game hopes to develop more of a positive association between the two. For routine lottery players, taking a chance on those numbers brings a fair amount of excitement, but this app does the same while encouraging fiscal responsibility and eliminating the disappointment that comes with your inevitable loss (sorry, the odds don’t lie).

According to Fast Company, the app rewards users who deposit money into a free Long Game savings account with chances to play lottery-inspired games like flip the card, spin the wheel and Omega millions (modeled after Powerball). The more cash you accumulate in the startup’s FDIC-insured, interest yielding account, the more opportunities you have to play the app’s pool of lotto games. Oh, and did we mention that users also have the chance to win a cool mill every week?

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The app rewards users who deposit money into a free Long Game savings account. (Image credit: Long Game)

If you’re not already seeing proverbial dollar signs, this next tidbit is sure to hook die-hard lottery players: There’s no risk associated because you never have to spend a dime of your hard-earned savings on the games you play. The startup, which was founded by Lindsay Holden and Stanford Global Projects Center executive and research director Ashby Monk, receives its funding from banks.

“Basically Long Game is just taking a very well known mechanism and making it widely available, and also a lot more fun,” Holden told Fast Company of the app’s savings approach. “Prize-linked savings has been generally just a raffle. But now with our app you can have it come out in any kind of game you’d want.”

Long Game’s co-founders don’t expect the app to singlehandedly halt lottery sales but they’re mostly interested in guiding consumers towards saving in an innovative, exciting way.

“We’d love to convert people who are playing lotto into saving, but I think it’s probably not like ‘Now I’m never going to buy a lotto ticket, I’m just going to save money,'” Holden said. “But it is an alternative. It’s something they start doing for fun and then realize, ‘Oh, I’m a saver.’ It does feel good.”

So, lottery players, how do you feel about dedicating a portion of your ticket budget to a savings account that could make a millionaire out of you? Whether you hit the jackpot or stack a little bit of extra cash in the process, the odds of winning are ultimately still in your favor.