Square Creates Yelp-Like Directory for Places That Accept Square

Square’s new directory is a little bit like Yelp, except that it only lists businesses that accept Square as a payment provider.

Today, the directory has about 200,000 restaurants, cafes and bars out of the more than two million individuals and businesses that are registered to accept credit and debit card payments using Square.

When looking at a map, that visually translates into a couple dozen shops in cities like downtown Seattle or Boise, Idaho. In San Francisco, where the company is based, there are even more.

Consumers will be able to use the directory to view menus, find deals and specials at restaurants and pay using the Square Wallet app, which consumers download to the mobile phone and where they store their payment card information. While the site doesn’t have Yelp-like reviews, some merchants do make recommendations on what to order and offer rewards, like 50 percent off your first purchase or 10 percent off every sixth visit.

If you think the number of locations where Square is accepted is sparse, keep these two things in mind: Square is already processing more than $8 billion in payments on an annualized basis, and soon it will be uploading every Starbucks into its directory based on a recent partnership it signed with the mega coffee conglomerate.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik