Just in case my love letter last November didn’t make it abundantly clear, I’ll reiterate: I love Square. We’re not investors, but I wish we were. I love both the business and the product. And if that level of admiration makes this post biased, then color me conflicted.
Apparently well aware of my tweets and posts, the company brought me in to show me the latest thing they’ve been working on. It’s the evolution of their Card Case product to morph it into a more central part of their overall strategy. It’s technically called “Pay with Square”, but when installed, the new app simply reads “Square”.
That’s telling. Square, the card reader (now appropriately called “Square Card Reader”), has been the way most people think of the product and company. But that’s limiting because it’s so focused on merchants. It’s a great business, and an important one — but if Square is truly going to revolutionize payments, they need to get the consumers fully on board.
“Watch the demo video for PayPal Here. Now watch the demo for Square Register. Which point-of-sale setup looks better? Which looks easier and more fun to use, for the customer and the merchant? Which looks like something you would want in a store you owned, or in a store where you enjoyed shopping? It’s Square. Merchants place a premium on that kind of experience. They opt fun over fugly, even if it costs them five-hundredths of one percent more.”—Fun Beats Fugly: Why Square Is Still Better Than PayPal | Epicenter | Wired.com