For a company that’s often been compared to Apple, Square is hiring an awful lot of Android engineers lately.”Just realised we have a new Android engineer joining Square every Monday for five weeks in a row!” tweeted Eric Burke, Square’s manager of Android engineering on Monday.
Square CEO Jack Dorsey retweeted Burke’s message—his way of signaling that the Android push was a corporate priority for the payments startup.
Burke, who created an Android-specific algorithm to let Square’s iconic card reader send credit-card data to Android devices, was also featured in the company’s blog on Friday. No coincidence there.
So we get it. Square really loves Android lately and is hiring folks who feel the same way.
What will these engineers work on? Square already offers a basic app which lets Android users take payments on smartphones. But it doesn’t have an Android version of Square Register, which turns a tablet into a full-fledged cash register capable of tracking sales.
A Square spokeswoman pointed us to a March story in USA Today which stated “Square has no plans at this time to launch a version of Square Register for Android.” But that was March—and that was before Square hired all these Android engineers. It’s hard to imagine they’re all going to sit around tweaking Square Card Reader.
While Android has a tiny share of the tablet market, it’s growing. And a small Estonian startup, Erply, has beat it to market with an Android point-of-sale app designed for tablets. (You may not have heard of Erply, but it’s backed by Index Ventures, a venture-capital firm which funded Skype, Etsy, and Dropbox, among others.)