A couple of months back I heard about the trials of a great smartphone-based service called Square that allows anyone with an iPhone or Android smartphone to take credit card payments – or donations – simply by registering, downloading an application, and plugging a little square card reader into their phone’s headphone jack. At that time, as I mentioned in an article on Smartphone Fundraising, a beta version of the service had been tested for fundraising at events by Charity:Water and also by Reshma Saujani, a democratic congressional candidate for New York’s 14th District whose fundraisers were using it for door-to-door fundraising – and it struck me what a fantastic service this could be for any fundraiser looking to raise donations at events.
Essentially, a Smartphone version of the traditional charity collection tin – for credit cards!
The great news is that the trials seem to have gone really well, and Square is now available for anyone who wants to take credit card payments – and has an iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, or Android Phone.
The bad news is that it’s only available in the US, with no current plans to bring the service to Europe. Although the question is being asked quite a bit on the @Square Twitter feed – so here’s hoping they do expand it sometime soon.
For a full write-up on the service, have a read of the coverage in the latest issue of Fast Company – or take a look at the Square site at squareup.com.