The Future of POS Technology
POS technology has been advancing at an amazing pace in recent years. The remarkable success of Apple Pay has drawn a lot of attention to the subject of mobile payment systems. There’s no doubt that this type of integrated payment system will form the basis of the next wave of POS services.
As mobile payment technology rolls out across the nation and picks up speed, it’s important for businesses to stay on top of the trend. The ability to accept this form of payment and process it is likely to be increasingly important as more consumers accept and put the technology to use.
Meanwhile, credit cards are changing rapidly with the spread of EMV chip card technology, and retailers need to get on board with a deadline for the phase-out of magnetic strips in the near future.
Apple Pay and Google Wallet
While Google Wallet has actually offered mobile payment services since 2011, it has not surprisingly been the launch of Apple Pay in 2014 that brought the technology into the spotlight. Google has been quick to catch up, and much like Apple and Android, the two systems are likely to split the market share more evenly in the future. Meanwhile, more companies are looking to get in on the market; Samsung is reported to have their own competitor to Apple Pay in the near future.
This form of contactless payment via mobile phone, known as near field communication (NFC), is one of the most important pieces of POS technology for retailers to jump on; the number of companies accepting contactless mobile payment is growing quickly.
Cards With Chips and EMV
Already in common use in Europe and Canada, EMV technology (which stands for the three credit card companies, Europay, Mastercard, and Visa, that developed it) is growing quickly in popularity in the US. Gone will be the swipe of the magnetic strip, and instead, all the information is stored in a small chip implanted right into the card.
These chips create a much more secure transaction by generating a new code every time they are used. Credit card companies have given US retailers a deadline of October 1, 2015, to start accepting the new chip cards, which means it’s time to upgrade your POS systems to accept them.
Other Technology of the Future
In addition to these two big innovations in payment technology, there are numerous other technologies in use. Mobile credit card processors are becoming more common, thanks to technology like Square, while classic registers are being replaced by tablets and mobile phones on sales floors.
The 2014 Innovator Expo showcased a number of integrated payment systems that are likely to become a reality in the near future. Apps that assist shoppers in both saving and spending money are also on the rise.
Preparing for the Future
There’s no question that staying on top of the new POS technology is going to become more vital in the next few years. While there is a hard deadline for accepting EMV chips, customers are beginning to expect mobile payment processing, so businesses will need to be equipped for it.
It’s important to upgrade systems with an eye to the future, so that multiple upgrades won’t be required as technology changes. As with all POS systems, the more recent the technology, the more secure it will be – certainly not a small point when it comes to investing in technology.