Twitter co-founder's 'Square' comes into focus

Apple iPhone 3GWell, we finally have a glimpse at "Square," the new mobile payments venture coming from Twitter co-founder and chairman Jack Dorsey. As expected, it's a little hardware add-on that can turn an iPhone into a credit card reader.

The funny part: Details about the small-business-oriented project have been on the Web for months. It was just that nobody had put two and two together until some eagle-eyed folks at Engadget realized that a URL on a screenshot of the "Square iPhone Payments Venture" first reported by Coolhunting matched a domain registered to Dorsey.

Dorsey, who stepped down as Twitter CEO almost exactly a year ago, is headquartering the company in New York, though we hear he already has employees in both Gotham and San Francisco. Its Web site will likely be located at SquareUp.com. Currently, that site is a collection of links to a smattering of businesses, including Sightglass Coffee, a new San Francisco coffee shop in which Dorsey has invested. (Wanna bet they're testing Square out there?)

From Coolhunting:

The innovation is in a small, plastic card reader that fits in to the headphone jack of an iPhone (or iPod Touch) and transfers the credit card's swipe data to the app. After the employee enters the amount to charge, the customer confirms by scrawling their signature with their finger and then either one enters the customer's email address to send the receipt to. The payment is processed by Square for a small percentage plus a fixed fee; the funds are transferred directly to the store's bank account, cutting both time and complexity on the processing side. The customer's receipt includes a map showing the location of the transaction which is handy for those who record, sort and file such things.

We heard that the venture is being called Square rather than "Squirrel," its originally reported name (according to TechCrunch's MG Siegler, this is because it looks kind of like an acorn) due to some unclear legal-copyright-licensing-whatnot issue. CNET News first reported the name change along with the news that Dorsey had been an angel investor in location-based mobile navigation start-up Foursquare.

Funding a hardware venture is typically more expensive than a Web-based one for obvious reasons: the up-front cost of production and manufacturing.

But two sources with knowledge of Square's logistics said that Dorsey believes he can keep production costs extremely low, possibly manufacturing a "square" at a cost of about 40 cents apiece. The company may then even give the devices away for free, making money instead on transaction fees. That's the old Gillette razor business model--make the razors cheap or even free, but replacement blades more expensive.

Regardless, we hear Dorsey has been working on a funding round.

Source: CNET

Tags: iPhone, Twitter

Comments
Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
or
Your comment:


Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party


Last news

 
The 41 million Galaxy S8/S8+ units that the company reported it has shipped in 2017
 
A new survey from Loup Ventures finds Apple iPhone users are falling into a predictable upgrade cycle
 
 
The company might do away with the Android Wear moniker in favor of “Wear OS”
 
But still no third-party Lightning to USB-C cables
 
Jolla confirmed Sailfish OS will now be supported by another Sony smartphone
 
A complete line of accessories will be available of $1,899.99
 
The Snapdragon 700 Series will allow you to capture content during the day and night
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) Review
The evolution of the successful smartphone, now with a waterproof body and USB Type-C
February 7, 2017 /
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /
 
 

News Archive

 
 
SuMoTuWeThFrSa
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930     




Poll

Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments (9)