Square Cash, a person-to-person payment service Square launched in October 2013, has been redesigned to become more useful as an app-based product.
At its launch, Square Cash was designed to be used over email, and the accompanying app did little more than slap a user-friendly interface on the process of emailing a recipient. Today's update enables app users to initiate transfers and requests from the phone's contact list, and it lets users add a profile picture and track past payments and requests, Square stated in an Aug. 26 press release.
Square is offering a $1 bonus to users who sign up their friends, according to Square's listing on the App Store.
In less than a year of service, people have used Cash to send and receive hundreds of millions of dollars, with more than a quarter of all Cash transactions being sent across city and state lines, Square said.
To use Square Cash as an email service, senders compose a message to the recipient and to "email@example.com," with the dollar amount listed in the email's subject line. After this message is sent, the recipient would also get an email explaining how to enroll a debit card account to receive the funds. As of a February update, users could also request funds by sending an email and copying "firstname.lastname@example.org" as a recipient.
Square Cash accounts are separate from the accounts consumers use to place orders with Square merchants. Square also had a Wallet app, which enabled in-store payments but was discontinued in May.
Square is one of several companies casting fresh attention on person-to-person payments. Google added the ability to send funds as email attachments last year; and PayPal has begun incorporating technology from Venmo, which it obtained through last year's acquisition of Braintree.