Square, Inc. (NYSE: SQ) is all about speed, and today the company announced it has delivered on its promise of making EMV transactions even faster for business owners and buyers in the U.S. Sellers can now process chip cards in just two seconds on Square Reader for contactless and chip and Square Register.
(News agencies report average chip speeds anywhere from eight seconds to 13 seconds, though there isn’t one consistent methodology for measuring transaction speed.)
“Since chip cards arrived in the U.S., we have focused on making our chip reader fast for our sellers, and three seconds or more wasn’t quick enough,” said Jesse Dorogusker, head of hardware at Square. “Taking an EMV payment in as little as two seconds helps speed up the line for our sellers, gives time back to their customers, and reduces in-store fraud in the U.S. Square sellers don’t need to compromise performance to reap the benefits of newer, more secure technology like EMV.”
“We get a rush of customers all ready to close out their open beer tabs at the same time,” said Regan Long, cofounder and brewmaster at Local Brewing Co., a brewery and beer bar around the corner from the Giants’ AT&T Park in San Francisco. “With Square’s chip card reader update, we’ve cut processing time in half—helping us keep customers happy and on their way to catch the first pitch.”
Square achieved this speed reduction by working closely with its partners at the payment networks to implement Quick Chip and M/Chip technology, a new dip transaction flow that reduces the contact transaction time by prioritizing the parts of transactions that are critical to security. This new technology allows a cardholder to remove their card immediately once the reading is complete, without waiting for the issuer response.
“We understand that for merchants, a quick, convenient, and secure checkout is critical to keeping lines moving and customers happy,” said Sherri Haymond, executive vice president, digital partnerships, Mastercard. “With M/Chip Fast from Mastercard, Square can provide both speed and security for all chip card transactions, delivering great experiences for its sellers and their customers.”
Speed enhancements for Square don’t just stop with chip cards. Square sellers in the U.S. and Canada can now skip collecting signatures on all card transactions. With in-store credit card fraud decreasing due to secure chip cards, in April, all of the major payment networks announced that they will no longer require merchants to obtain a signature. Square made updates to its free POS app so sellers can skip waiting for people to sign for any transaction amount and get back to doing business.
“In today’s busy, on-demand world, Visa is focused on ensuring payments is one area that does not slow us down, helping our merchant and retail partners offer fast, easy, and secure experiences at the point of sale,” said Stephanie Ericksen, vice president, global risk products, Visa. “Visa is pleased that with Square’s latest upgrades, merchants can speed up service at checkout and help customers get on their way a bit quicker.”