updated 11:10 am EDT, Wed November 2, 2011
Square Card Case uses iOS 5 for geo area
Square on Wednesday rolled out a major upgrade to its Card Case app for the iPhone that gives it special location awareness just for iOS 5 users. A single opt-in takes advantage of iOS 5's geofencing to make payment completely hands-free at places where the app user has a loyalty card. Whenever the user is 100 meters or closer to a store using Square, they just have to mention their name to make the payment.
Along with a visual ID check, security comes through preventing the payment tab from automatically opening when users get close. Buyers can manually override if they don't expect others to try and 'steal' use of the account. On the store's side, the merchant app reveals anyone with a supporting version of Card Case who's nearby.
Card Case also uses iOS 5 to integrate Twitter so that they can comment on a store and see feedback from others. Discovery is much more advanced and now lets stores' pages add a one-tap call option, directions, food menus, and photos. A list of the most popular nearby Square shops helps users find places to use the payment system, reducing qualms about where to go either for hands-free payment or to swipe at the card reader.
As with the earlier app, Card Case is currently iOS-only and also isn't directly available through the App Store. Merchants usually have to trigger delivery of the app themselves. Android isn't yet known to be getting Card Case and might lose the geofencing support if it does.