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Where Square’s In-App Payment Feature Fits

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Jan. 29 2019, Updated 4:20 p.m. ET

Ideal for large merchants

Square (SQ) created a software development tool that lets businesses use its service to process payments within their mobile apps. The software tool, aimed at businesses that prefer to build their own customer-facing apps, allows them to add a payment feature to their apps, thereby increasing payment options for customers.

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Square’s online push

The launch of the in-app payment feature is part of Square’s penetration of the online payment space, the domain of its rival, PayPal (PYPL). Last year, Square acquired website and online store builder Weebly, a move seen as a way to expand its online foothold.

With the rise of e-commerce, where social media operators such as Facebook (FB) and Snap (SNAP) are building e-commerce features into their platforms, it has become imperative for payment providers to strengthen their online presence. Facebook operates a marketplace within its flagship social network, and Snap teamed up with Amazon (AMZN) on an online shopping program last year. Square’s in-app payment software development tools began rolling out this month in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Japan.

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