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Square’s Power Efficient Card Reader

Square is a digital payment company known for its card reader that attaches to a mobile device (e.g., a smart phone). Square appears to be one of the ‘winners’ of this pandemic, having its stock practically triple in the last year.

Founder Jack Dorsey has many patents to his name relating to their mobile payment system. One of which is US9,858 ,603B2 which relates to a way of preventing the smart phone from perceiving that the card reader has been disconnected during power cycles.

It appears that the card reader uses a power cycle (power off then power on) during the process of sending a unique ID from the card reader to the mobile device. The card reader has a ‘fake load’ that interfaces with the mobile device during the power cycle to prevent the mobile device from seeing that the card reader is powered down. The mobile device will not know that the card reader is power cycling because the fake load will take the place of the card reader during the power cycle, thus masking the power cycle of the card reader.

This patent application appears to be an ‘omnibus’ patent (a single disclosure that describes several independent inventions) from which multiple Square have been filed from.

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