Square Mobile Card Reader now available in Canadian retail stores

Ian Hardy

November 20, 2012 10:55am


The Square payment system officially launched in Canada on October 24th. At the time they claimed to have 2 million users around the world and processed over “$8 billion in annualized payments.” Today, via an email to us, Square said they now have 3 million active users and jolted upward and processing an impressive $10 billion in mobile payments.

There’s no word on how many of the 3 million, or the $10 billion, is directly from Canadians. We reached out to Square and they noted that “We haven’t released any numbers on the amount of Canadian dollars that have been processed or the number of businesses that have signed up – so far we’re really happy with the excitement we’ve seen from Canadians.”

The Square Card Reader allows businesses to process credit card payments (Visa and MasterCard) via your iPhone, iPad, or Android device. It’s free from the Square site, but they’ve now struck up a distribution agreement with several Canadian retailers, specifically Apple, Best Buy, and Futureshop. This will help the adoption rate and the price is set at $9.99, but Square will then issue you a $10 rebate – so it’s still free. To make this work you’ll have to sign-up via Square and download the app. For small businesses it’s certainly something to consider.

Source: Square Canada
Via: Apple, Best Buy

  • anona

    Not bad, but needs Chip support.

    • deltatux

      NFC solutions would be better like PayPass or PayWave.

    • anona

      Very true.

  • Smirn

    Do I have to attach this awkward, square thing to my phone?

    if so, pass.

    • Fraser

      How is this any worse than the pizza delivery guy handing you a large, bulky, debit/credit machine? This is a beautiful, pocket-sized mobile payment solution.

  • Brad F

    2.75% per swipe, do other alternatives charge the same? (debit machine etc) cause that seems a bit much to me

    • bob

      Most if not All credit companies charge this. Ever been to a place with a credit up charge? Most larger retailers just absorb the cost themselves, but smaller ones tend to try and get at least some of it back.

  • Kyle

    Great news for small businesses that don’t want/need a large contract with a POS provider. 2.75% is fairly standard for the convenience – in line with paypal fees as well.

  • dave

    You just attach it when you want payment :-).

    Whatever you do smirn don’t glue it on.

  • George

    So far I only contribute about $170 towards the CDN total but am loving my square reader. Great service so far.

  • G

    What happen if I am listening music and I want to process a payment?

  • Mike

    OMG it’s an outdated system…. DOA They should be reminded that credit card these days come with a chip. You don’t swipe any more.

    By the way, are they going to release a gadget for casette tapes? Since they are into retro stuff. :)

    • EvanKr

      I wouldn’t say it’s DOA per se, but I do agree that it’s pretty impractical to not offer chip support.

  • AllanVS

    Miner is has ‘GetPayd’ which charges 2.95%/swipe, and used to have a MONTHLY fee of $2.95! I go my Moneris reader a year ago, and my square reader a month the ago. The Square one is about 1″ square + a 3 ring 3.5″ audio adapter (sends analogue signals to the app).
    I like it as Square is 2.75%/swipe and not 2.95%.

  • AllanVS

    Miner is = Moneris
    Damn autocorrect!

  • Charlie

    Not sure I trust it

    • Qoma

      Credit card fraud has never been faster!

  • disco

    without chip support the business is risking loosing a lot of money on fraud.

  • Bad Apple

    Already tried this one. It’s a BS if when signing up they ask you for your SIN. And during sign up they ask you question s you have no idea what that is. Got rid of it and switched to PAYD by Moneris. At least I know it’s a Canadian company and they charge 2.95 keyed in or swiped transaction. Not like Square that charges you different % for swipe and different % + $ for keyed in transactions.

    And since trying Square suddenly my email address is being bombarded with spam.

  • Justin

    But that’s for magnetic credit card.. so wat about with chip?

    • anona

      Chip cards have a magnetic strip. Your question is invalid.

  • Reginald

    I still go to many businesses that do not have chip machine yet and still swipe. I think square is going for the easy to carry simplicity of use angle.

  • squirrel_masher

    This company is reliable with functionality, they are not from Nigeria trying to steal your account, they have been in use for a couple of years with CC processing applications.

    However there are some issues with using the service (from experience):
    For those checking it out, large payments run the risk of being “withheld” for 30 days while they do bank checking. So in reality they are getting interest off your amount for 30 days, and you might be stuck waiting for the cash to arrive.
    There are rules posted about when this applies, however they reserve the right to apply it for unusual account activity…

  • T Gombs

    Visa and MasterCard have rules that shift liability to the merchant if there is fraud when an Chip card is processed as a mag stripe transaction. So what happens a fraudulent mag stripe card is used? I presume the merchant is out of luck, right?

  • Mike

    NFC ….nuff said

  • Paul

    Small business gets charged only 1.7 % for credit cards. Of course that is not mobile but at my business.. 2.75 can be lot for some businesses and would outweigh the convenience.