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American Express Enables Points for Gift Cards in App

Posted by Jeff Scott on November 13th, 2012
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

The idea is pretty simple. You are in a store and want to use your Amex points for a gift card. But the usual process would be you'd redeem the points and await a mail delivery of the card.

Amex has taken a couple steps out of that and now allow you to use your mobile phone to redeem the points for a gift card and immediately present the bar code on your phone screen at the checkout for redemption. Quick and easy.

GoPago to Compete with Square to Kill the Cash Register

Posted by Carter Dotson on August 8th, 2012
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

GoPago is a startup with a goal that’s rather modest: they want to kill the cash register. They’re going to do this with an offer for any interested merchants: they’ll send along a 4G-enabled tablet with GoPago software, card reader, cash box, and receipt printer for free. They’ll only be making money off of a 2.85% fee on credit card transactions. JPMorgan Chase is backing GoPago, so this isn’t just a fly-by-night company.

In particular, GoPago is competing with Square, which has been distributing their own free card readers and has been pushing the Square Register iPad app. Square card swipes are a bit cheaper at 2.75% per swipe compared to GoPago’s 2.85% per swipe, but GoPago is giving away the tablet and other physical materials for free as well. For businesses looking to easily accept credit cards and to make their business more flexible, GoPago could be an interesting option, though with Square’s recent deal to start processing payments for Starbucks, this may be a tricky field to penetrate.