Indeed, finding the right partnership will be key, says Todd Ablowitz, president of Centennial, Colo.-based Double Diamond Group LLC.

“Clearly, for anything to roll out you need a big entity to capture it, or you need a viral uptake,” he says. “When you’re talking about getting a hard product into people’s hands, it’s pretty rare that you’ll get a viral uptake.”

Ablowitz believes it is difficult to determine Sqwizz’s viability because of the unknowns about NFC technology. “If [NFC] is like other things in payments like I’ve seen, it’ll settle out in a way that a bunch of people will sort of ask a question or two about security and quickly get comfortable,” Ablowitz says, noting a small but vocal percentage of consumer will have security concerns based on their interpretations of the product.

“If that plays up the same way with NFC, I’m not sure there is enough of a market for an alternative device,” he says. “I think those people are more likely to stick with what they have.”

Sqwizz could be “an idea that just might be a little ahead of its time because NFC hasn’t been proven out yet,” Ablowitz adds.

Payments Source, February 25, 2011
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