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May 13, 2014

Square launches pre-order app for cafes as it pulls wallet service

Firm describes failed payment method as " very magical experience".

By Jimmy Nicholls

Mobile payments firm Square launched a pre-order app for cafes yesterday following the demise of its previous payments method ‘Wallet.’

Its new app, branded ‘Order’ allows users to choose and pay for food from their mobile before arriving at a shop or cafe, avoiding the queue and hassle of paying at the counter.

Ajit Varma, director at Square, said: "Square Wallet provided a very magical experience but didn’t have a lot of the utility value."

Wallet enabled customers to login to the shop through the app and pay by giving their name at the till, eliminating the need for cards.

The payment method failed to gain significant traction and was removed from app stores as Order launched. For existing customers the service will continue to be supported by Square.

"We want to make it really clear to people looking for Square in the App Store that Order is where we see the future," Varma added.

So far Order is available in New York City and San Francisco, and the software can be downloaded for both Android and iPhone.

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Square has caused quite a stir in the payments industry, despite the failure of Wallet, having been valued at $5bn earlier this year.

The payments firm has been the subject of rumour about a potential IPO for some time, though many believe the plans have been abandoned for the moment.

Founded by Twitter co-creator and chair Jack Dorsey in 2009, Square also offers point-of-sales services for tablets and smartphones.

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