Groupon Payments expands to Android devices


Groupon released an updated version of its Merchants application for Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android operating system, adding support for the GrouponPayments transaction processing platform.

Designed to rival similar efforts from Square and PayPal, GrouponPayments--launched nationwide in September 2012 on devices running Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS--enables any U.S. merchant running a Groupon deal to accept credit and debit payments by swiping the customer's card through a small dongle that plugs into their smartphone or tablet audio jack. GrouponPayments claims 1.8 percent plus $0.15 of each MasterCard, Visa and Discover transaction, and 3 percent/$0.15 of each American Express transaction, with no hidden costs or monthly fees. In addition, non-Groupon merchants can process payments at a rate of 2.2 percent (3 percent for AmEx) and $0.15 per transaction.

By comparison, Square offers merchants the choice between a 2.75 percent per-transaction fee or a flat $275 monthly charge, with no processing fee or additional costs, while PayPal Here charges businesses a flat rate of 2.7 percent per credit card or PayPal transaction.

Retailers and restaurateurs also can leverage Groupon Merchants for Android v2.2 to scan and redeem Groupon offers, add tips, apply taxes, process refunds and email customer receipts. Merchants can additionally view live transaction histories, check daily sales reports, track account deposits and analyze revenue trends via Groupon's online Payments Center.

Groupon presents daily bargains from local businesses across a range of verticals. Mobile devices now generate about one-third of transactions across Groupon's North American digital deals platform, a year-over-year increase of close to 30 percent, the firm said in November. Earlier last year, Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason told investors that the company's mobile shoppers spend about twice as much on average as their desktop counterparts.  

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