March 12, 2015
Having launched their first Square Reader years ago, Square has always been focused on developing even better hardware and improving the way the product is built. Several card readers – and one Square Stand – later, Square is still keen on building devices that are thinner, smarter, more accurate, and more reliable than what’s come before. The payments landscape is changing faster than ever, withEMV and NFC introducing new requirements. Square’s goal has always been to continue to make the smartest payments hardware accessible to its customers.
With this onward focus, Square has acquired Kili Technology, a company that has developed silicon, electronics, and software that simplify and optimize payment processing. Square is looking at this acquisition to aid in delivering simple and affordable hardware that gives sellers a smarter and safer way to do business. Kili has been known for its low-cost solution-on-a-chip software for accepting contactless payments while acting as a mobile point-of-sale system.
Square’s primary motivation behind this acquisition can be attributed to the fact that Square still has to incorporate NFC capabilities into its readers. Square has already come up with readers incorporating EMV chip based technology, but there is rising demand for NFC, thanks to mobile wallet systems out there like Apple Pay. Post acquisition, we can certainly expect Square to come out with an upgraded reader incorporating multiple forms of payments. Square is certainly looking to create future-proof solutions with this acquisition.
Square had launched its new reader for chip based cards in November last year.The reader was priced at $29. The reader is quite compact, something that could fit in your pocket, and is compatible with both iOS and Android. Along with chip cards, it processes magstripe cards as well. The reader is highly energy efficient and could last through an entire day of sales.
Here is a video illustration highlighting Square’s current card reader offering:
As the battle for mobile payments is heating up, Square is trying its best, through initiatives such as this, to lock in more users and make sharing as fast as possible. We can expect the company to come up with even more features on the mobile platform and attract more users with its mobile payments capabilities. The company doesn’t show any signs of slowing down either, although it operates in an incredibly competitive space.