Payments

Square Expands to Another Continent

California-based payment technology provider “Square” has expanded to Australia by launching its headquarters in Melbourne. Australia is the fourth country where the company has opened offices, others being Canada, Japan and the United States.

The company has opened up in Australia in response to the demand from small and medium entrepreneurial community in Australia. "We are thrilled to open our local office in Melbourne due to its thriving small business community of merchants who are already benefiting from Square, as well as having a growing reputation as Australia’s technology hub,” stated Ben Pfisterer, Australian Country Manager for Square in a press release.

The company’s “Square Register” product which is a free point-of-sale tablet application that provides cash register functions for small and medium businesses has been available in Australia since the end of last year. Square Register is a pocket-size point-of-sale system compatible with Apple and Android devices that powers small and medium businesses. It comprises an iOS or Android app and a cloud service providing digital receipts and analytics as well as the basic functions such as accepting card payments via a Square Reader.

Australia is an evolved market for payments with the gaining popularity of contactless payments. The introduction of Westpac’s contactless payment, VISA payWave’s contactless NFC terminals and the HCE-based mobile payments by Cuscal have already taken payments to the next level in Australia. Introduction of Square in Australia will surely cater to the needs of small and medium businesses, but in long run, contactless payments would help in sustenance.

Square however seems to accept contactless payments this year by including Apple Pay.  In an interview with CNN, Jack Dorsey, Founder and CEO of Square stated, “The compatibility with Apple Pay, and contactless payments in general will take some retooling of the Square hardware.”

Square has recently acquired a Toronto-based startup called Kili Technology for payment hardware. Kili has developed silicon, electronics and software that simplify and optimize payment processing. The company produces custom system-on-chips aimed at providing FIPS-level (Federal Information Processing Standard) security with embedded NFC transmission features. The acquisition seems to show a sign that Square would accept contactless payments with its hardware restructure.

Shubha

Shubha has deep interest in studying the intersections of the physical world with the digital world and writing about it. She is a techno-commercial person, a gadget freak and she has worked at Amazon in the past.

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