Square payment dongle for iPhone

Here’s a demo (thanks to technology investor Kevin Rose) of a prototype credit card reading dongle that plugs into the headphone jack of an iPhone.

The easy to use, secure system (no details are held on the phone) has the potential to turn anyone into a credit card merchant. The user runs the magnetic strip of the card through the reader, signs the touchscreen using a finger, and then enters their email address to receive a receipt showing the amount and location of the transaction.

A cool idea, and great for the United States, but European credit cards have mostly moved away from magnetic strip storage, to more secure inbuilt chip and pin cards. The kit to read magnetic strips is really cheap, but devices capable of decoding the information held on a chip would push the cost up substantially.

Square is a start up company fronted by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey. Set up in February 2009 it’s brought the prototype to market in a very short time.

Originally published at OneMobileRing.com