2010: Location, Random Connections, The Inbox, Frictionless Payments
2009 was Twitter's year. 2010 is looking to be FourSquare's year. Twitter is in a better shape today than ever before, but it no longer has the buzz it had last year around this time. FourSquare's buzz will also subside. That is the nature of the innovation market. If they don't make the mistake of selling the company, (FourSquare Must Cut A Deal With Yahoo) I think FourSquare will go on to be a viable business that is no longer always in the headlines. Some company will take the space that FourSquare will at some point exit. Which company will that be? I might be proven wrong, but if I had to take a guess, if I were forced to come up with one name, the horse I am betting on is Venmo.
2011 could very well be Venmo's year. Venmo is a hot possibility that some venture capitalist wanting to strike gold needs to lap it up fast. The Venmo team deserves to go work full time on their beautiful product. They are onto something big.
Granted 2009 was 2009, the year of the Great Recession, but plenty of companies were getting funded despite that, and FourSquare was not one of them. They landed at South By Southwest last year with a thud. They were not going anywhere trying to raise money. They approached Yelp. Yelp would not invest. FourSquare's fortunes started picking up only later in the year. Location became a buzz word, and by now all that pain from early last year must feel like a distant memory.
Venmo does frictionless payments. Venmo is in the mobile web space. But it can do the old web good too.
I don't think Venmo will get called the next FourSquare like FourSquare is being called the next Twitter, and I don't think the buzz will be with any one company in 2011, likely it will be fractured and distributed among a few different names, and we might not even have to wait for 2011 to roll around; it might happen earlier. But Venmo sure is in sweet space.
When I said to Iqram (@iqram) last night at the Digital Dumbo party (Digital Dumbo: Here I Come) that 2011 could very well be Venmo's year, he immediately sent $10 to my Venmo account for my "kind words." That's what the email says. At the after party of the NY Tech MeetUp when they presented, Kortina (@kortina) sent me 40 cents, and that is how I got started on Venmo. That was a few months back.
Frictionless Payments - 10 Tech Trends for 2010 - TIME
Friction in onlin payments | Institute For The Future
The Future of Money: It's Flexible, Frictionless and (Almost) Free...
Frictionless - and Almost Free - Payments?
@iqram, @kortina, @venmo