SQUARE LAUNCHES SDK: Square is launching a software development kit (SDK) that will allow developers to build custom in-person payment solutions using Square’s hardware, according to a company blog post. The mobile point-of-sale (mPOS) provider has offered an application programming interface (API) for two years, but this expands on that solution by allowing access to “Square’s hardware without using Square’s software” — new territory for the company, according to Business Insider.
The Square Reader SDK could help Square attract new types of sellers. For years, Square’s appeal has been its transparency, accessibility, and out-of-the-box utility. But while that’s a big draw to some merchants, especially those new to selling, it might not be the right fit for every company, and could have pushed what Business Insider calls “niche” groups of merchants — those that needed a solution more suited to their own industries — away from Square and toward other sellers. Marketing itself to a broader base of potential clients — some taxis have already piloted the SDK, and Shake Shack tested it for self-service payments as well — could help Square expand its reach. This is something the firm has been trying as it angles to attract larger sellers: Square already offers its own specific products for restaurants and retailers. But this takes that initiative a step further, by bringing in different groups of merchants without forcing the firm to develop for specific industries. This could bring up Square’s gross payment volume (GPV), and help the firm reverse several quarters of stagnant and decelerating GPV growth, while also attracting clients that might engage with the company on multiple levels, in turn boosting other revenue segments at the same time.