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This article was published on October 26, 2010

PayPal iPhone app adds push notifications, local merchant search

PayPal iPhone app adds push notifications, local merchant search
Chad Catacchio
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Chad Catacchio

Chad Catacchio is a contributor writing on a variety of topics in tech. He has held management positions at a number of tech companies in th Chad Catacchio is a contributor writing on a variety of topics in tech. He has held management positions at a number of tech companies in the US and China. Check out his personal blog to connect with him or follow him on Twitter (if you dare).

PayPal has just released version 3.0 of its iPhone app, with push notifications and local merchant search.

The eBay owned company has been rapidly iterating its app, and with good reason – features such as check scanning are obviously a hit among users.

You can now set up push notifications for whenever you send or receive money, make a purchase, or receive a request for money. The app says that push notifications will not work on a jailbroken device or if you iPod Touch is in sleep mode.

The apparently still in beta “PayPal Local” is described in the app as:

Now you can see all the nearby businesses that accept PayPaly and Bling. Narrow your search by distance or business type to find the services or products you need no matter where you are. And because you’re paying with PayPal or Bling, you’ll get access to great deals and discounts!

Unfortunately, nothing came up within 30 miles when we shared our location with the app, but we weren’t in a large city when testing. The categories include: Food, Gas, Cafe, Drugstore, Supermarket, Entertainment, Retail, Services and Other.

This is a very interesting move by PayPal and in a way hits at Yelp, Google and in the future Apple, by not only offering local search (if it in fact works) but also closing the loop of payments. Of course, those merchants have to accept PayPal or Bling, but if you have a PayPal debit card as well, it won’t really matter if you walk into a place that doesn’t let you pay with your phone.

The latest release, which just hit the Apple App Store within the last hour, also adds the following features:

  • Control the length of time you remain logged into the application
  • New help center, with FAQ and customer service contact info
  • Sign up to PayPal from within the app

Note: This post has been updated.

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