Square Hails a Taxi as Mobile Payments Go For a Ride

Following the announcement of the Square Register earlier this week, the folks behind the mobile payments juggernaut haven’t let much grass grow beneath their feet.

Today, the company founded by Twitter pioneer Jack Dorsey revealed that Square is introducing a new payment platform for New York taxis.

The new system, which will be in 30 taxis to start, will allow passengers to swipe their credit card at any point in the ride, before the trip has ended. There is no need to sign pieces of paper either; passengers can sign the screen in the back of the cab with their finger and then have a receipt sent to their phone by e-mail or text message.

Megan Quinn, Square’s director of product, tells the New York Times that taxi drivers remain some of the company’s “most loyal customers.” But in New York, where “tight regulation limits drivers,” drivers can’t swipe a person’s credit card on their own phone.

So Square had to come up with a different plan.

“The traditional Square set-up wasn’t possible [in New York],” Quinn said, “So we started working closely with the New York City Taxi Commission” to improve the experience.”

These taxis will be outfitted with Square’s latest hardware — an iPad encased in a black metal sleeve that is connected to a credit card swiper. The screen displays a slick Apple-like design of New York too, showing information about your location, fare and route.

Does Square seem like a natural fit for New York Taxis? Please weigh in with a thought or comment below.