The Slide group within Google has been busy. Disco, the group messaging app, quietly launched back in March. Then last week, Pool Party, a group mobile photo service entered into private beta. And today the team is back again with Prizes, a service that apparently aims to link up people with a problem to those with a solution — for money.
Found at Prizes.org (which DotWeekly reported that Google secured back in April for Slide), Prizes is still in beta testing. But it is available for the public to use right now — though contest creation is still invite-only. You simply sign up with Facebook or Twitter (no Google options) and you’re ready to go.
Once you sign up, you’ll be presented with a stream of activities you can do — such as creating a soul mixtape — for money. You can follow any of these contests, or drill down into them for more information. And you can submit entries (solutions) for each contest.
Each contest has a time limit for completion. And they can get votes from other users. Users of Prizes can also get messages from other users, and get notifications for the contests they’re following.
The money aspect is currently only open to users with a “credit history”, meaning users have participated in contests in the past or created their own. The transactions are handled through PayPal (again, not a Google service — Checkout).
The idea is fairly compelling, though as usual, you’ll be hard-pressed to find any mention of Slide or Google anywhere on the site. You have to drill into the TOS to find that Slide, by way of Google, is behind the service. Given the lack of Google integration, it seems that this is yet another example of Google giving the Slide team free reign to do as they wish within the company. I mean, they’re really pushing the Facebook Connect integration. Interesting.