Digital payments company Square unveiled a new, slimmer credit card reader on Monday. The new reader was designed by a team led by former Apple engineer and current Square VP of Hardware Jesse Dorogusker.
In an in-depth article highlighting the new Square Reader, a device that allows users to accept credit card payments on most iOS devices, Wired offers a behind-the-scenes peek at how former Apple employee Jesse Dorogusker managed to slim down the already tiny dongle.
Dorogusker was at Apple for eight years before moving over to the VP job at Square. He was involved in numerous hardware accessory projects while at Apple, including the lead role in developing the Lightning connector.
Square’s new reader is 45% thinner than the previous reader, and contains changes to give it a more solid, reliable feel when “swiping.”
The new reader uses custom designed parts, including the credit card reading head. The previous head was able to read only one of the two magnetic strips on a credit card, while the new reader can read both.
The new read head uses a new spring, to exert more force on a card, offering a better feeling swipe, while the battery in the previous unit is now absent, as the reader is now powered from the iOS device’s headphone jack.
The Square Reader is a free accessory, used with the Square Register iOS app, available in the App Store. [DIRECT LINK] Users must first purchase the reader from Square’s website or an authorized dealer. The cost is then refunded to their registered bank account upon signing up with Square.