PayPal unveils PayPal Here, a competitor to Square, with local component

PayPal Here device plugs into the top of a iOS or Android smartphone

PayPal, San Francisco, Calif.,   announced PayPal Here, a mobile payments solution allowing small businesses to accept almost any form of payment. The new service includes a free app and fully encrypted thumb-sized card reader, which turns any iPhone, and soon Android smartphone, into a mobile payment solution, the company says. The service will compete with Square, a similar mobile payments service.

PayPal also released the latest version of its PayPal Mobile app for iPhone, a consumer app that complements PayPal Here. PayPal users will be able to use the “Local” feature on the PayPal app to find nearby businesses accepting PayPal Here. Once the customer is ready to pay, they can notify the merchant by a quick tap on their mobile phone. Merchants can use PayPal Here to accept the payment by simply referencing the shopper’s name and picture – no wallet needed.