December 22, 2009

Square: make your iPhone a card reader

If you're a small business and you want to find a way to accept credit card transactions on the go with your iPhone, well, there's an app for that.

Although it needs a tiny piece of hardware too.

Square is a service established by Twitter visionary Jack Dorsey that pretty much lets any iPhone become a credit card reader (although Blackberry and Android phones are going to support the hardware as well). The small white thing that accepts the actual credit card is something that plugs into the headphone jack, and requires almost zero power to run, as it reportedly only uses the power of the force made by the swipe to operate, which is actually kinda cool.

The seller can also e-mail or text the receipts to the buyer instead of having to print it, and if the buyer has a Square account as well, the app will ask the seller to verify the photo of that of the buyer's Square profile to that of the actual human being to help offset credit card fraud which is very neat.

But the buyer need not a Square account, they can always verify a transaction by just writing their signature on the touch screen and even allot a tip percentage.

Even better is the fact that a dollar in the transaction will even be donated to a charity of the person's choice.

I really like how green and well put together the service is, and I can't really wait for it to catch some steam over here- it would really benefit a lot of micro/small entrepreneurs.

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