HE’S not exactly your stereotypical bodyguard.
But at just 15 years of age and standing at less than six-feet, Hampshire schoolboy Toby Smith is offering his services to protect people from across the globe – in the world of online gaming.
From the comfort of his bedroom in Mountfield, Hythe, the Applemore College pupil tutors and protects online players of popular Xbox 360 shooting games, including Battlefield and Call of Duty.
Toby sells his unique service for £5 per 30 minutes of game play, using the website fivesquids.co.uk.
The site allows people from around the world to offer various tasks for £5, including doing their homework, writing them a song, or even becoming their ‘Internet girlfriend’ on social networking websites.
Toby’s profile on the site promises to “take bullets for you for half an hour,” by becoming a “personal online bodyguard.”
Enthusiast Gaming enthusiast Toby, came up with the idea a few months ago after stumbling across the website by chance.
Despite having only had four paying clients so far, his page has already attracted interest from users in Western Europe and even as far afield as America.
“I’m not a millionaire by any means,” Toby said.
“But there’s been a lot of interest out there from people saying it’s a good idea.
“Out of the four clients I’ve had, three of them have been from America, so people obviously like the concept.
“I guess to make any real big money out of it I would need to expand it and maybe pay people to play at different times and on different consoles, rather than just having one boy sat in his room on an Xbox between the hours of 4pm and 7pm.”
Toby’s parents, Peter and Sam, both 47, have praised the idea – and his entrepreneurial ambition.
“Toby’s got a real independent and determined personality and it’s great that this is all him and all his own idea,” Sam said.
“He’s got a real entrepreneurial spirit and was just keen to go out and make some money off his own back, doing something he enjoys.
“But he’s got loads of ideas and real ‘can do’ spirit. If anyone in this house is going to make a million pounds, it will be him.”