Square seems to be building up defenses in anticipation of future slugfests with new competitor PayPal. Square has recently updated it’s app, and the company has also reportedly enabled encryption for the newer dongles, a move that answers one of the major criticisms levied at the mobile payment tech.
PayPal’s direct Square competitor, PayPal Here, was unveiled a few weeks ago, and one of the features that stood out was the ability for retailers to automatically recognize the app, and the possibility for users to automatically have their account debited with a acknowledging word; no need to pull out your credit card or even your phone. The idea was similar to one Square had six months earlier called the Card Case app.
Now, Square has focused on making the Card Case app more visible, and rebranded the app, as well as updated the UI—gone is the wallet look. Card Case has been reborn as “Pay With Square,” and the tab-opening app is open to Android users now (2.1 and up), as well as iOS (4.0 and up). The UI change allows users to find Square-accepting retailers more easily, allowing users to browse through the directory or find nearby business via map. Another new offering is the ability to add business to a favorites list, and the ability to share that list with friends.
Along with dusting off the Card Case app’s image, VentureBeat reports that Square has added encryption to its Square reader. Competitor VeriFone has been hounding Square over the reader’s security. Square was challenged last year, and again earlier this month in the NYC taxi pilot program. PayPal Here has apparently been touting the encryption of its dongle, and Square has answered back. The currently shipping Square readers have the encryption, and Square eventually make sure all its users have the new readers. Along with the Square’s VP poaching and push for International expansion, Dorsey’s company seems to be acutely aware of the competition.