Square-up, Process Payments on Your iPhone

Square is scheduled to arrive (out of beta) very soon for the iPhone. I bet you are wondering, what is “Square?” Simply put, Square is an iPhone application that allows anyone to accept payment by credit or debit card using the signature Square Swiper. Square was created by Jack Dorsey who also created that popular service we use called Twitter. When Square goes live in the app store, it will cost only $1 and the card swiper will be included for free. There will be a transaction fee of 2.9%, but there is no need for a special bank account to be set up to accept payments.

To use square, you simply load up the app, insert the card swiper, enter the amount of the transaction and swipe the card. You can enter a note with a description of the item or even take a quick picture of the item(s) you are selling. Note, if you don’t have the card swiper you can enter the card manually. The person paying for the transaction can then sign for the items right on the iPhone screen, and choose whether or not to receive the receipt via email or SMS message. No paper is necessary. When you receive the receipt, it will show you the GPS location of where the transaction is made. This is very helpful for fraud prevention. Also, for every transaction, $.01 is donated to the charity of your choice.

The possibilities for people using this application are endless. Think of individuals who are having garage sales, selling concert/sporting event tickets, selling items on Craigslist not to mention small or large businesses that need to make quick, seamless transactions. A similar application to this is called Mophie Marketplace, but key differences are that Square does not require a merchant account, the credit card processor is not as complex, and Square does not charge a monthly fee on top of the transaction fee.  The app could be available as soon as April but more likely the June/July 2010 timeframe. Keep an eye out for it.  You can also submit your name and email to be included in the current beta tests. We will keep you posted about the official launch from beta.

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