US PayPal Here developments announced

PayPal HereIt has been announced that PayPal Here in the US will be following Europe by adopting the chunkier handset soon. Hitherto, they have favoured the swipe device that plugs into smartphones. You can check that out here.

It includes news that PayPal Here in the US will also start supporting Windows 8.1 and also enabling chip and pin payments. Techcrunch has noted all the developments in a very detailed post. The US lags behind the UK in the use of chip and pin, it seems.

We like PayPal Here and it’s a great example of how Europe has been leading the innovation at PayPal with the bespoke device.

But what is certainly cross-making is the pricing. Apparently the PayPal Here handset device stateside is free to new accounts and additional handsets are $15. That compares very favourably to the UK prices. It’s £99 here, with promos at £49 sometimes. We’ll be interested to see if the price goes up stateside with the bigger and better handset.

What is interesting is Techcrunch’s take on the number of downloads the app has had and which might give an indication of how popular the service is. They say: “The company declined to say how many reader devices it shipped to date, or how much transaction volume its handled via these devices since their debut. However, shortly after its launch in 2012, PayPal said that over 200,000 merchants had signed up for Here. Another window into its traction is via its PayPal Here Android application, which has somewhere between 1 million and 5 million installs. Combined with its iOS app, the Here app has been downloaded millions – likely double-digit millions – of times.”

Impressive numbers.