Payment system lets customers buy goods using their names


24 May 2011

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Mobile payment start-up Square has introduced a new system allowing US businesses to accept payment from customers using their names.

“Cash registers and credit card terminals are relics of an expensive, complicated and impersonal commercial transaction system,” said Jack Dorsey, CEO of Square, who also co-founded Twitter.

“With Register and Card Case, we’re transforming everyday transactions between buyers and sellers into something special. We revolutionised the payment industry with the Square card reader, which makes it possible for anyone to accept credit cards on their phone.

Now, with Square Register, we’re reinventing point of sale with a beautiful, intuitive iPad app. Card Case goes beyond point of sale to transform the entire buyer-seller relationship," said Dorsey.

Square Register

The Square Register app adds new features for its iPad point-of-sale solution, aiming to get rid of traditional cash registers.

The app lets businesses streamline the checkouts, manage their stocks, check daily transactions, update pricing, generate digital receipts and communicate to customers’ mobile phones more easily.

It also lets businesses maintain a virtual storefront with its location-based directory feature, allowing customers to explore nearby shops through their phones.

The Square Register app also has a menus feature, letting shops and restaurants advertise their current prices, products and special offers. Updates are pushed instantly to let customers get the most current information.

Card Case

Square’s Card Case app for iPhone and Android is aimed at customers, letting them access the directory of stores and menus along with opening tabs for their favourite merchants.

A customer can open a tab on their phone and confirm their identity at the point of sale, allowing the store to verify this with a stored profile and photo on the Square Register. The store can then approve his or her purchase with one touch, meaning the customer does not need to bring a physical wallet to the store.

Currently, the system is only available in a small number of US states, but if this is successful it could spread worldwide, impacting mobile payments hugely in the future.