Eventbrite gets into the dongle business

March 20, 2012

Eventbrite, the ticketing and events start-up run by Kevin and Julia Hartz, unveiled its own dongle on Tuesday, following tech companies such as eBay Inc’s PayPal and Jack Dorsey’s Square Inc.

PayPal launched a blue triangular card reader, or dongle, last week to help small merchants accept credit and debit card payments through iPhones. The company said on Tuesday that about 24,000 merchants ordered the gadget in the first 24 hours after launch.

Square  has a square shaped dongle that has been a big hit with small business owners, many of whom previously could not accept cards.

Eventbrite’s dongle is orange – in keeping with its corporate colors – and plugs into Apple iPads. Event organizers will be able to use the dongle, in conjunction with Eventbrite’s At the Door iPad app, to process  card payments for tickets to events of all sizes and types, merchandise, VIP packages and other stuff, the company said.

Eventbrite is selling the credit card reader at a new online store, Brite Store. One card reader costs $10, but Eventbrite will put a $10 credit in organizers’ Eventbrite accounts automatically. 

This is Eventbrite’s first proprietary piece of hardware. That may be a costly move, but it could help the company attract more event organizers and keep the ones it already works with.

“At The Door transforms an off-the-shelf iPad into a paradigm-shifting tool for managing sales for events,”  Hartz said.

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