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Socket Mobile (Newark, CA) has shipped its newest cordless handheld scanner, the Bluetooth CHS 8Qi. Designed for one-handed operation, CHS 8Qi reads common one- and two-dimensional symbologies, in either print or electronic formats. With sled configuration, this device attaches to the smartphone via optional "klip case," and furnishes compatibility with iOS, Android, and Windows. As additional benefits, it carries antimicrobial plastics, 10-hour battery life, and visual, audio, and vibrating indicators. It automatically connects to the phone after first set-up and provides "pick-list" for selective reading of grouped codes. "The CHS 8Qi is small, light, and provides an easy-to-carry solution that fits in your pocket or can be worn on lanyard," remarked James Lopez, VP of Marketing and Business Development.
Socket CHS 8Qi
Oracle Conjures POS
A word comes down from Oracle (Redwood Shores, CA), announcing the Micros Workstation 6. In keeping with the times, this new terminal addresses consumer design, delivery of content, and state-of-the-art computing. Specific elements include low profile, passive cooling, and latest Intel Atom CPU. A 15.6" high-definition, projected-capacitive touchscreen facilitates display of customer engagement materials as well as transactions. The mount, in brushed aluminum, allows staff to adjust the screen angle or swivel it around for the customer to see.
Workstation 6 runs Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry Pro. A modular, integrated, three-track magnetic card reader allows for 3DES or AES encryption, upon swiping. With six USB ports, the stand of the Workstation 6 also provides cable management as well as accommodation for printer power supplies and customer displays. In addition, Workstation 6 features spill and impact resistance to withstand the day-to-day abuse common in hospitality and retail, according to Oracle/Micros.
"Technology continues to reshape the hospitality industry and allow renewed focus on the guest. The design of Oracle's Micros Workstation 6 leverages new, modern technologies to help improve guest transactions, streamline business operations, and enhance guest loyalty," remarked Ray Carlin, VP of Strategy and Solutions Management for Oracle Hospitality. "This next-generation point-of-sale terminal is a guest engagement device that is feature rich, elegant, and integrated with mobile, as well as exceptionally reliable and durable."
Micros Workstation 6 From Oracle
Pay Day at ShopKeep
One of the more visible upstarts in tablet POS, ShopKeep, will now offer payment processing. A new division, entitled ShopKeep Payments, will leverage technology from Payment Revolution, former processing partner and independent sales organization (ISO), which ShopKeep has bought. According to reports, Payment Revolution CEO Etie Hertz will become SVP of Payments for ShopKeep. Both companies are based in New York City.
"As the industry continues to change, we are expanding into areas that help our customers run smarter businesses and grow--that includes data and analytics, gift cards, marketing software integrations, and now payments," elaborated Norm Merritt, CEO/President of ShopKeep. "Most merchants do not have the time to fully research the intricacies of payment processing, and because ShopKeep has such transparent pricing options, so many of them have requested a simpler payments solution from us. With ShopKeep Payments, merchants can have all of their point-of-sale needs in one place, with transparent pricing, customized rates, award-winning 24/7 customer support, no termination fees, and no contracts."
ShopKeep Payments will also offer "best-in-class" residual pay-outs to its interested, certified value-added resellers and referral partners, reportedly. Additionally, ShopKeep will continue to allow merchants to work with any credit card processor of their choosing. A member of the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA), ShopKeep now runs more than 16,000 registers, many of them in New York City.
ShopKeep Opens Payments Division
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Zebra Drops ZQ500
Zebra Technologies Corporation (Lincolnshire, IL) has unveiled its newest mobile thermal printer, the ZQ500 Series. In 3" (ZQ510) and 4" (ZQ520) formats, these devices have been designed for extreme ruggedness. They feature an IP-54 rating for water and dust (with optional case, an IP-65), MIL-STD-810 for shock, vibration, and temperature exposure, and capacity to withstand multiple drops to concrete of 6.6 ft./2 m (with optional case, 10 ft./3 m). Print speed and quality are automatically optimized in cold temperatures, while media has been protected from being ejected if the printer get dropped.
Measuring 5.9 in. (H) x 4.7 in. (W) x 2.4 in. (D) for the ZQ510 and 6.2 in. (H) x 6.1 in. (W) x 2.6 in. (D) for the ZQ520, with weights of 22.3 oz. and 27.6 oz., respectively, these devices have three large buttons for operation with gloved hands and clamshell format. An intuitive user interface, as well as the Link-OS environment, makes them easy to set-up, manage, and maintain, noted Zebra. Maximum print speed reaches five inches/127 mm per second with resolution of 203 dpi.As communications, Zebra has provided Bluetooth 4 and 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, with support for the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands as well as secondary, simultaneous Bluetooth 3.0. Extensive connectivity via Link-OS includes Print Touch NFC, Profile Manager, Cloud Connect, and Virtual Device Support. The ZQ500 Series has been certified as "Made for iPOD/iPhone/iPad" (MFi) and Wi-Fi Alliance, for use with iOS, Android, and Windows. It debuted at this week's ProMat 2015 in Chicago, addressing the target markets of transportation and logistics, manufacturing, and government.
Ultra-Rugged ZQ500 Series by Zebra
An Interceptor for Printek
PrintekMobile (Benton Harbor, MI) has unwrapped its new mobile thermal printer with full 8" width, called the Interceptor 800. With dimensions of 12.3 in. (W) x 4.3 in. (H) x 2.6 in. (D), and weight of 3 lbs., Interceptor allows in-the-field printing of reports, work orders, invoices, and tickets from devices running iOS, Android, or Windows. It furnishes an easy-to-read control face and simple drop-in paper loading, as well as dual tear bars and various mounting schemes.
Employing direct-thermal technology, Interceptor has maximum print speed of two inches/second (11 pages/minute) at resolution of 203 dpi. It comes standard with USB, and offers Bluetooth 2.0 and 802.11b/g/n. For 8" or A4 paper widths, it has 100 page roll capacity. Vehicle power input is 12 to 24 Volt DC, with optional rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery.
"In a market that has not seen many eight-inch, full-page mobile thermal printers, the Interceptor 800 is sure to stand out," relayed Julie Payovich, President of Printek, LLC. "Interceptor 800 is one of many new mobile thermal printers that we have scheduled to launch this year." With emphasis on emergency medical services, police, fire, and insurance, PrintekMobile goes to market through VARs and ISVs. TransAct Technologies (Hamden, CT) supplies the Interceptor 800, which it markets as the Responder MP2.
Interceptor 8" Thermal Mobile Printer
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Ready at Revention
Approval has been granted for Revention (Houston, TX) to brand the popular TM-T88V receipt and TM-U220B kitchen printers from Epson America (Long Beach, CA). Available now, these printers, along with Revention's POS software, are currently being featured on "Bar Rescue," the Spike TV reality series featuring John Taffer, knowledgeable--and loud-mouthed-- food and beverage industry consultant. "As a key innovator of customizable hospitality management solutions, Revention is an ideal partner for Epson," commented Tom Kettell, Director of Commercial Channel Sales for Epson, which counts Revention as an Envision Partner.
"Revention is proud to present our logo on these top-notch Epson Printers," volunteered Laura Gaudin, Director of Product Management at Revention. "We are committed to serving the hospitality market and branding these superior printers with our logo helps us do that. Many POS printer manufacturers have approached us with promises of better pricing and products, but nothing compares to Epson's quality and stability."A busy time at Revention, which also has announced two new partners. First, Punchh (Mountain View, CA) has extended its mobile customer relationship management (CRM) platform. In addition, Revention has tied to FranConnect (Reston, VA), which, as its name evokes, specializes in franchise operations. Fast casual concept Burger 21 has adopted Revention/Punchh; for its part, FranConnect supports over 600 franchise brands.
Epson's TM-T88V Branded by Revention
Accessorizing With Jennifer
Lucas Systems (Pittsburgh, PA) has certified a selection of smartphones and wearables for use with its voice-picking system, dubbed Jennifer. Specifically, this includes Samsung Galaxy S4 and S5 Smartphones, Motorola Luge Smartphone, Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch, and LG G Smartwatch. In order to extend ruggedness, the smartphones come with hardened cases, reaching MIL-STD-810.
"By supporting Jennifer on rugged smartphones, we are helping DCs give workers better, more intuitive, and more ergonomic tools to do their jobs, without sacrificing security or durability," suggested Jennifer Lachenman, VP of Product Strategy and Business Alliances at Lucas Systems. "Beyond operational efficiency, these smart solutions improve the user experience, which goes directly to staff training and retention. This is a critical issue in the face of the changing DC workforce, and the different technology expectations of the new generation of millennial workers."
"New rugged smartphones and wearable devices allow us to introduce new capabilities that were unthinkable even five years ago," observed Jeff Slevin, COO of Lucas Systems. "These new solutions will help accelerate the adoption of mobile work applications in a range of new tasks within and beyond the four walls of the distribution center, including store-based fulfillment for omni-channel retail." Several customers of Lucas Systems have already deployed such new configurations.
Smartphones and Wearables Certified by Lucas Systems for Voice-Directed WMS
Borrowing the word for "enlightened" in Sanskrit, Hot Schedules (Austin, TX) has launched "Bodhi," its aspiring middleware for restaurant IT. Under the category of Platform-as-a-Service, or PaaS, Bodhi promises easier integration and more rapid development of mobile applications. It collects data across levels of systems, from in-store (point-of-sale, scheduling, restaurant equipment), to near-store (location-based apps, weather and traffic, social media), to above-store (inventory, marketing, accounting). Such data is consolidated in the Bodhi Cloud, then delivered through Bodhi Mobile Apps or through third parties by Application Programming Interface (API). "By delivering pre-built integrations to the point-of-sale and simplifying cloud and mobile development, Bodhi shifts the focus so that restaurant IT and developers can create, deploy, and operate apps that deliver value, much faster and at lower cost instead of struggling to integrate disparate systems for single-point solutions," relayed Dipock Das, VP of Technology for Hot Schedules. In praising Bodhi, CEO/President Anthony Lye noted, "It's unbelievable how much data surrounds restaurants and how little of it can be put to good use. We're setting it free so it can go to work for you."
NOTES FROM THE FIELD
Charting the Stars
Star Micronics America (Edison, NJ) has released two updates to its linecard: DK-AirCash with Wi-Fi and thermal labels for its SM-T400i Portable Printer. Debuted in 2013 with Ethernet and Bluetooth, DK-AirCash (for "Drawer Kick") supports Mobile POS. For use with tablets, smartphones, and notebook PCs with iOS, Android, or Windows, this modem measures 6 in. (L) x 3 in. (W) x 1.1 in. (H) and weighs 8.8 oz. "By allowing secure control of your cash drawer wirelessly, you now have flexibility to configure the store layout without restriction due to wiring or other traditional infrastructure limitations," explained Christophe Naasz, Business Development Director for Star Micronics America. With 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, one cash drawer may be accessed from multiple devices, it should be noted.
New thermal labels have been certified for Star's SM-T400i, in three sizes: 2",3", and 4". Utilizing direct-thermal technology, the SM-T400i accommodates data-filled service reports, delivery notes, or law enforcement citations, as well as receipts and labels. It prints at three inches/80 mm per second at 203-dpi resolution, and carries transmissive and reflective sensors, "drop-in and print" media loading, and LCD display. As expected, it supports iOS, Android, and Windows, with MFi.
Sourced from one of the major paper converters, these labels will be offered by Star Micronics through its distributors, primarily BlueStar, M-S Cash Drawer, and Metropolitan Sales. Star Micronics has offered receipt paper for some time--along with other printer vendors, websites, and office supply stores--but felt the need to add such thermal labels because of the specialized requirements of portability, including smaller roll diameters, Jon Levin, Product Integration Manager at Star Micronics, told RRN.Com. "It makes it easier for our resellers."
Wi-Fi Added to Star's DK-AirCash Modem
An SDK Leads "Anywhere"
A new strategic partnership has arisen between Anywhere Commerce and PowaPOS. It involves integration of Anywhere Commerce's "mSuite Solutions" into the PowaPOS Software Development Kit (SDK), thereby providing ISVs access to EMV and NFC payment schemes for iOS, Android, and Windows. The PowaPOS SDK, part of its Developer Program, now supports Anywhere Commerce's family of card acceptance devices, payment software, and back-end management platform. This includes gateway connectivity to processing end-points in the U.S., Canada, and Latin America, emphasized the two parties, both of which are based in Atlanta.
"The relationship we have with Anywhere Commerce underscores the value of eliminating a point of friction that has kept many tablet-based POS solutions from achieving scale," expounded Jeff Dumbrell, CEO of PowaPOS. "With this integration of our toolsets, ISVs can quickly take advantage of a proven end-to-end payment solution without having to develop and support another level of integration." In the phrasing of William Nichols, CEO of Anywhere Commerce, "freeing ISVs to concentrate on core POS functionality."
Headquartered in London, Powa entered the U.S. market last year. In our channel it offers the PowaPOS T25, which gathers peripherals into one neat package, including tilting/swiveling tablet stand, high-speed printer, two-dimensional scanner, cash drawer, and credit-card reader (with so-called PowaPIN EMV). It continues to draw ISVs, including, just this week, Banq POS.
Jeff Dumbrell, CEO, PowaPOS
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O Canada! Sings Moneris
No surprise here--Moneris Solutions has been chosen as the payment acquirer for the Government of Canada. As part of this agreement, Moneris, which is based in Toronto, will process payments from Interac Debit, Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. It will also provide processing for online transactions for Canada.
Approximately forty federal government departments and agencies accept credit and debit cards at different locations across Canada. As payment processing partner, Moneris will provide all point-of-sale devices in addition to managing transactions. It will also help the government keep pace with the ever-changing payment technology landscape.
"We're delighted to be working with the federal government to manage and improve its payment solutions for services across the country," remarked Jeff Guthrie, Chief Sales and Relationship Officer for Moneris. "We are capable of scaling to meet the needs of the Government of Canada, innovate with new technology, and deliver strong service and support." Recently, Moneris was chosen as one of the 50 Most Engaged Workplaces in North America for 2015 by workforce company, Achievers.
Jeff Guthrie, Chief Sales and Relationship Officer, Moneris
NCR's Waffle Iron
Waffle House has completed its rollout of the tablet-based NCR Silver to 1,400 corporate locations in the U.S. Next comes hundreds of participating franchise restaurants. In this case, NCR Silver replaces traditional cash registers and stand-alone credit card terminals. As immediate benefits, Waffle House cited faster transaction times and reporting features such as shift sales.
NCR Silver was customized for Waffle House with Android. (It also works with Apple iPad, of course.) Waffle House developed written and visual training materials on NCR Silver, yet revealed that many of their employees learned to use the terminal with minimal or no training. In addition, NCR Silver was operational in less than an hour for each site, on average. Now if only there was channel play!
"In the coming year, NCR Small Business is committed to working with great franchises like Waffle House to make NCR Silver as valuable as possible to their businesses," declared Reggie Kimble, Director of Business Development, NCR Small Business (Duluth, GA). "Our solution will further enable associates to focus their attention on customers, not technology. As an all-in-one solution, we hope NCR Silver will become the go-to for franchises across the country looking to enhance business operations and the customer experience."
Waffle House Adopts NCR's Tablet-Based System
Signs for worry from Verizon's 2015 Payment Card Industry Compliance Report? First, nearly 80% of all businesses fail their interim PCI compliance assessment (those between annual assessments), and only 28% of businesses are still fully PCI-DSS compliant within one year after being validated. However, twice as many companies were validated as compliant during their initial compliance review in 2014, as compared with 2013 (20% vs. 11%). And between 2013 and 2014, compliance increased for 11 of the 12 PCI-DSS requirements, with an average increase of 18%. The biggest jump in compliance was found in authenticating access (Requirement 8), but compliance fell in the critical area of testing security systems (Requirement 11). According to Verizon, only 33% of surveyed businesses met this requirement in 2014, compared to 40% in 2013. "Data protection is not just about using encryption, firewalls, and antivirus," advised Verizon. "It's about ongoing scoping, configuration maintenance, identity management, logging, monitoring, scanning, and testing. Security is something you do, not something you have. The low results of testing security systems (Requirement 11) show that many organizations still don't recognize this." Four recommendations followed: (1) appreciate the scale of the task (need for board-level sponsor and budget), (2) focus on scoping (clear definition of required people, processes, and technology), (3) leverage compliance as an opportunity (to improve business processes and customer experience), and (4) make compliance sustainable (part of corporate strategy and day-to-day activities).
TSC's Midwest Bracket
TSC Auto ID Technology America (Pomona, CA) has enlisted Michael Paul as its Sales Manager for the Midwest Region. Paul has over two decades of sales experience, much of it in Auto ID. He comes to TSC America from Intermec Technologies, where he served for four years as Inside Sales Representative for Printer/Supplies. Before that, he worked for five years as Account Management Representative for Zebra Technologies.
"I am very excited to join the team at TSC," shared Paul. "With the expansion of their product line along with the new products that they are unveiling in the coming year, TSC is poised for strong growth within the Midwest Region as well as the rest of the Americas." His territory includes Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia."Michael has an impressive track record for increasing sales in his territory with his previous companies," reflected Kevin O'Donnell, Director of Sales for TSC America. "His industry, market, and product knowledge will be of great benefit to the resellers in his territory." Well-known in our channel, O'Donnell came to TSC America in January.
Michael Paul, Sales Manager, Midwest Region, TSC America
A Magic Wand for Sales
Wand Corporation (Minneapolis, MN) has recruited Bill Chesney as its new VP of Sales. During his career, Chesney has held senior positions in sales and marketing for technology firms such as De La Rue Cash Systems, Black Box Network Services, MultiTech Systems, and Venture Solutions. As many readers know, Wand supplies its digital menu board, point-of-sale, and back-office solutions as part of its Total Restaurant Management Platform.
"Joining Wand is something I'm very happy about," stated Chesney. "It's a company with great energy and excellent technology in a market that is rapidly growing as restaurants continue to maximize digital technologies to increase sales and profits." Enthused Dave Perrill, Wand's President, "Bill's background in developing and leading top-of-the-line sales teams in fast-paced organizations is exactly what we need as we continue to focus on explosive growth."
In keeping pace with technology, Wand also has hired Erik Hanson as its VP of Software Development. He brings nearly fifteen years of software development experience, most recently serving as Director of Software Engineering at Virtual Radiologic. "Erik is a fantastic addition to the Wand family," testified Perrill. "We're looking forward to seeing the positive impact of his leadership as our software continues to grow in size and capabilities."
Bill Chesney, VP of Sales, Wand
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