With the much-vaunted rise in adoption rates of Apple Pay in the US, competitors Google and Square are reportedly in the process of developing new payment systems aimed at giving them an edge in the market. A report has claimed that while Google is testing its new mobile payment system called Plaso, Square is also in the process of creating an Android-based tablet for its small-business transactions to replace the iPad-based Square Registers.
Google's Plaso (pronounced as Play-So) is said to be a new mobile payment system which has been in testing since last year in some retail outlets. The Information, which broke the news, details (via The Verge) how the new payment system works. Users walk into a store, either make a transaction or seek to complete one, and gives the cashier their initials. Once the initials are verified by the cashier on the Plaso smartphone interface, the billing process is completed. The cashier locates the initials of users from a list of Plaso-enabled devices within Bluetooth range of the cashier's smartphone. However, the details on how exactly it works are yet to be confirmed.
The reported Plaso service is strikingly similar to Square Wallet, a mobile payment service which was discontinued by Square almost one year ago, and required users to tell the cashier their name, and then after confirming it was indeed the user who placed the order by verifying the profile photo, the billing would be completed. The firm, while discontinuing its Wallet added that it might bring the service in its future products.
Talking about Square's future products, The Information added that Square has been working on an Android-based tablet that might replace the iPad-powered 'Square Register', just in case Apple in the future removes support for the service in an attempt to promote Apple Pay. The report says that the development of the tablet is in the initial phases and may never hit production. Square is would be hard-pressed to convince retailers to adopt a new system in lieu of what it already offers.
In a report from earlier this month, it was suggested that Swatch is also competing with Apple on the grounds of mobile payment system. As per the report, Swatch is in talks with Switzerland's two largest retailers, named Migros and Coop, for its mobile payment system. However, the Cupertino firm seems to be strides ahead of its competitors, with Apple Pay having seen much adoption across retailers and banks already since its launch in September.