Our Product Pick
Wasp Barcode Technologies (Plano, TX) has unwrapped its newest mobile computer, the DR2. With dimensions of 6.3 in. (L) x 3.2 in. (W) x 0.7 in. (D), and weight of 10 oz., the DR2 reads one- and two-dimensional barcodes. Supporting Android 4.3, it features 4.7" capacitive touchscreen with Gorilla Glass, five-megapixel camera, and rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery. As tech specs, it has Texas Instruments OMAP Dual-Core 4470 CPU at 1.5 GHz, 1-GB RAM, 8-GB Flash, and 32-GB Micro-SD. As communications, there's Bluetooth 4.0 and 802.11a/b/g/n. In ruggedness, it meets an IP-65 rating for water and dust, MIL-STD-810F for vibration and shock, and withstands 4-ft./1.2-m drops. "A perfect match" for its new AssetCloud, according to Wasp, it has $995 MSRP.
Wasp's 1D/2D DR2
A Pulse for Powa?
Some news, finally, on the fate of PowaPOS. As widely reported, parent company Powa Technologies, U.K.-based and "Unicorn"-hyped, went bust and was placed in receivership with accounting firm Deloitte earlier this year. Since then, PowaWeb, the online payments division, and PowaTag, the "scan-the-code" division dedicated to Mobile POS, have been picked up in fire sales by two different investor entities. But what of PowaPOS, which established its toehold in the POS Channel with the handy-looking, tablet-based terminal, T25?
A home has been found, apparently, with SuperCom (Herzliya, Israel), which largely focuses on the government, public safety, healthcare, and financial sectors. Expanding its particular expertise in security, SuperCom now offers solutions for mobile commerce, electronic documentation, asset and people tracking, and mapping and GIS. Terms of the acquisition of PowaPOS were not disclosed, but for frame of reference, SuperCom reported total revenues of approximately $30 million in both 2014 and 2015. (Again, according to press reports in the U.K., PowaPOS and PowaWeb, unlike PowaTag, actually had customers.)
"SuperCom gives us a powerful platform for growth and an established channel to market, where we can combine our industry leading hardware with SuperCom's increasingly diverse, interconnected solutions," declared Jeff Dumbrell, CEO of PowaPOS. "We will be announcing some exciting changes to our organization over the coming weeks, and remain fully committed to protecting our customers' investments including continuity of service across our range of solutions." According to its figures, PowaPOS has gathered support from 150 ISVs. In the U.S., however, it will face an uphill battle to regain credibility.
PowaPOS T25 Terminal, Now the Property of Israeli Firm, SuperCom
Visa: Giddy Up, EMV!
So you insert your card and wait, and wait. Now Visa has addressed this common problem of EMV with "Quick Chip." Unveiled at the Electronic Transaction Association (ETA) Show in Las Vegas, this software reportedly cuts the time for payment with EMV chip cards to two seconds or less--similar in duration to MSR. It will be provided free of charge to the payments ecosystem, according to Visa (Foster City, CA).
In this scheme, the customer dips, and immediately withdraws, his or her chip card from the payment terminal. No more hostage taking. Once installed, the technology works with common cardholder verification methods, including Signature-and-PIN. Significantly, it does not require the merchant to make any changes to their routing or transaction handling. As for the terminal, there's "relatively minor changes," according to Allen Friedman, VP of Payment Solutions for Ingenico (Alpharetta, GA).
A number of stakeholders in the processing arena have tested the software. "What's particularly appealing about Quick Chip for EMV is that it can be implemented quickly with no impact on Visa's Level 3 certifications," indicated Terrence Crowley, CEO of TranSend (Mt. Laurel, NJ), developer of RevChip. "We welcome secure methods that speed up things at the merchant's checkout." [Editor's Note: Or at least make them tolerable.]
Visa Will Provide "Quick Chip" to Cut Transaction Time With EMV
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NRF's Big Show
ALL IN THE FAMILY
Bixolon's "Liquid Barrier"
Bixolon America (Torrance, CA) has unboxed its new water-proof, front-exit, direct-thermal printer for POS, the 3" SRP-F310II. With built-in power supply, the SRP-F310II carries so-called "Liquid Barrier" technology for water and dust resistance to IP-12. It measures approximately 6 in. (W) x 8 in. (D) x 6 in. (H) and weighs 4.4 lbs. It supplies thermal print head reliability of 250 km and auto-cutter guarantee of three million cuts.
As performance, the SRP-F310II has maximum print speed of 13.8 inch/350 mm per second at 203 dpi (29% faster than the previous SRP-F310). An "An All-in-One-Plus" interface provides USB 2.0 and Ethernet and optional Serial, Parallel, Powered USB, Bluetooth, or WLAN. As additional benefits, there's easy paper loading, anti-jam capacity, sensors for paper end, paper near end, and cover open, and choice of black or white cases.
"Our SRP-F310II is second to none when it comes to durability," reported John Kim, Marketing Director of Bixolon America. "It can literally be used in any industry and can take whatever you throw at it, no matter the environment. It's certified as Energy Star, has paper save mode, and includes new SDK (Software Development Kit) for iOS and Android."
Bixolon's SRP-F310II POS Printer
An "Ultra" Package by Janam
Janam Technologies (Woodbury, NY) has presented its new "ultra-rugged, ultra-compact" touch computer, designated the XT2. It represents the first device in its class to run Android 5, according to the vendor, and has been certified for Google Play. It weighs 10 oz. with battery and MSR, carries 5" capacitive touchscreen with Gorilla Glass, and meets an IP-67 rating for water and dust, MIL-STD-810G for vibration and shock, and 5-ft./1.5-m drops to concrete. A pretty neat package.
Armed with Zebra's SE4710 scan engine, the XT2 captures one and two-dimensional barcodes from 2 ft./0.6 m (as well as capability for RFID/NFC). As communications, there's Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11a/b/g/n, and 4G LTE WAN. An eight-megapixel front facing (along with two-megapixel rear-facing) camera enables customers to capture high-resolution photos and signatures. A Qualcomm Quad-Core MSM8916 CPU at 1.2 GHz, 2-GB/16-GB Memory, and rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery power the XT2.
"Enterprises are looking for smaller, lighter, and faster mobile computers in order to deliver superior customer service and improve customer satisfaction," asserted Harry Lerner, CEO of Janam Technologies. "As sleek as a smartphone, Janam's tough XT2 is equipped with the most advanced technologies to meet the diverse needs of virtually any mobile worker." In conversation with RRN.Com, Lerner touted the role his company can play in fulfilling the needs of resellers and their customers, particularly in light of consolidation in Auto ID.
Janam's New XT2 Touch Computer
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ScanSource Spots Bluebird
Another new vendor for ScanSource POS and Barcode (Greenville, SC), in this case Bluebird, Inc. (Seoul, South Korea). While relatively unknown in the U.S., Bluebird offers an extensive product line of mobile devices for computing, scanning, and payments under its brand, Pidion. ScanSource will serve as the exclusive distributor for the U.S. and Canada.
"The mobile customer commands greater knowledge of products and demands higher levels of service than ever before," observed Jangwon Lee, CEO of Bluebird. "We are thrilled to enlarge the readiness and the availability of Bluebird solutions in North America and enhance the level of service to our existing and new partners with ScanSource." Calvin Cho leads Market Development for Bluebird USA (Ridgefield, NJ).
As some readers of RRN.Com may recall, this is Bluebird's second attempt at distribution in the U.S. Early in 2012, ex-patriots from Symbol Technologies (John Gibson and Frank Borghese) launched "Yellowfin." Backed by Auto ID VAR Data Capture Solutions (Ellington, CT), and named for DCS CEO Joe Teixeira's fondness for fishing, that effort didn't swim. "We're committed to delivering innovative solutions to our reseller partners," Brenda McCurry, VP of Merchandising, ScanSource POS and Barcode, U.S. and Canada, commented on Bluebird.
On the Distributor's Line Card: Bluebird BP50 Android Business Tablet
Hot Stuff at Agilysys
Once upon a time, VARs of POS were eagerly solicited to sell what was then termed "time and attendance." (In today's terminology, "workforce management.") As everything runs together, based on computing power at the front counter, such technology has inevitably shifted to software. (Anybody remember recruitment of terminal resellers by Accu-Time Systems or Control Module?) Enter HotSchedules (Austin, TX).
In its efforts to solicit today's community of POS, HotSchedules has enlisted companies such as ParTech, QSR Automations, and Kitchen Brains. Now follows another major stakeholder in hospitality, Agilysys (Alpharetta, GA). Under this agreement, Agilysys becomes the first Master Level Partner in the recently-announced HotSchedules' Global Channel Partnership Network. Its solution will now be integrated into InfoGenesis POS.
"Agilysys' complementary customers and global reach will dramatically increase our footprint, adding new markets and opportunities for us to expand our customer base and shape the future of the hospitality industries through technology," projected Anthony Lye, President and CEO at HotSchedules. "We're delighted to have Agilysys on board as our first Master Partner." Added Jim Dennedy, President and CEO at Agilysys, "We're extremely impressed with the depth of features, technical maturity, and continued focus on innovation from HotSchedules."
HotSchedules Tied to InfoGenesis POS
One of the prosperous pilgrims in Apple POS, Lightspeed (Montreal, QC, Canada), has offered its Lightspeed eCom to SMB merchants in North America. This technology results from Lightspeed's purchase of SEOShop, an Amsterdam, Netherlands-based firm, in November 2015. As expected, Lightspeed eCom seamlessly integrates with cloud-based Lightspeed Retail. Among its capabilities, Lightspeed lists: retail to e-commerce integration, inventory management, instant notification of new web orders, comprehensive reporting, and centralized transaction information. Additional benefits include social media optimization, customization and templates, dynamic app marketplace, multi-national and multi-currency capacity, and advanced product set-up. "Retailers want the freedom to sell across all channels, whether in-store, online, or mobile. No matter the platform, it's all part of one continuous experience with a brand," relayed JP Chauvet, Chief Revenue Officer at Lightspeed. "With this new platform and integration, we're giving retailers a way to easily manage their online and in-store business, offer customers a seamless shopping experience, and sell smarter."
Lightspeed Rolls Out eCom
Elo Brews the Coffee
A familiar ISV, SelbySoft (Puyallup, WA), has certified hardware from Elo Touch Solutions (Milpitas, CA). SelbySoft's SP-1 fits the niche requirements of two primary retail markets: coffee and pizza. For coffee, for example, there's built-in customer engagement and loyalty; in the case of pizza, there's expedited ordering and delivery management. Included in this certification are Elo's X-Series, E-Series, and PayPoint POS.
"We know our customers need more than just software--they need a business partner," expounded Mike Spence, President of SelbySoft. "Certification of Elo's POS hardware portfolio with our industry-leading software provides our customers with versatility and ease-of-use, empowering them to design an experience that keeps customers loyal and employees happy." Added Craig Witsoe, CEO of Elo, "SelbySoft offers exceptional value to coffee, pizza, and restaurant retailers, making it the right certification partner to help us better serve this market."
Also, Elo has showcased its new 90-Series Open-Frame Touch Monitors. With standard-aspect-ratio (15"/17"/19") and wide-aspect ratio (10"/15"/20"/22"/24"/27"), these feature the company's highest quality LEDs, VGA, Display Port, and USB or Serial. For easy retrofit, each model has been designed with the same height, width, and mounting locations as previous Open Frames from Elo. All are backed by three-year warranty.
Certification by SelbySoft for Elo's POS, Such as X-Series
A LOC on Epson
And, similarly, approval for Epson America's OmniLink TM-H6000IV-DT Multi-Function Printer from ISV LOC Software (Laval, QC, Canada). With its Store Management Suite (SMS), LOC addresses supermarket and grocery, pharmacy and drug, convenience and fuel, and natural products and cooperatives. "Our integration provides retailers with all the essential components needed to efficiently operate in their multi-store retail environments," suggested Richard Bell, Director of Sales for LOC Software.
In making its choice, LOC noted the space-saving nature of Epson's OmniLink TM-H6000IV-DT, which combines thermal receipt printing and dot-matrix slip printing in format of 7.3 in. (W) x 11.4 in. (D) x 9.7 in. (H). As with all of Epson's OmniLink family, it carries retail-hardened PC, with Intel Atom CPU at 1.8 GHz, 4-GB RAM, 500-GB HDD, and Windows Embedded POSReady 7, Windows 7 Pro, or Linux. As the hub for peripherals, it has multiple USB, VGA, and Powered USB.
"LOC Software provides its customers with technology solutions that go beyond their expectations and at minimal cost," noted Tom Kettell, Director of Commercial Channel Sales at Epson America (Long Beach, CA). "Not only does the company's SMS provide the most comprehensive inventory and merchandising tools, it provides retailers with the business logic and metrics required to profitably operate higher volume check-out environments. Together, we provide them with the technological edge required in this highly competitive marketplace."
Epson America's OmniLink TM-H6000IV-DT
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Cayan Sets Genius STX
First launched in 2012, the Genius Customer Engagement Platform from Cayan (Boston, MA) proved prophetic in its acceptance of MSR, EMV, NFC, and Mobile Wallets. Now, recognizing an unserved segment--those merchants in SMB without PC POS--Cayan has introduced its Genius STX. It employs "non-integrated" payment terminals, initially from Verifone.
As with its big brother, Genius STX fits the suite of modern payment types, including EMV and Apple and Android Pay via NFC/QR Codes. It also provides small retailers with digital signature capture, cash back, transaction history, and gift card support (i.e., activation, sale, refund, add value, and balances). Without integration to POS, some functionality has been reduced, such as line item display. A pilot test is underway.
"Small retailers are struggling to modernize in the fast-changing world of payments. Having a future-proof payment system in place like Genius STX is quickly becoming a necessity as the mobile payments and EMV revolution marches on," proposed Henry Helgeson, Co-Founder and CEO of Cayan. "2016 will be the most challenging year yet, as more mobile payment forms present themselves. At the same time, there's never been more opportunity for retailers to transform their customer experience for the better."
New Payment Platform Targets the SMB
Of Nomad, Bluefin, and Mobile POS
AnywhereCommerce (Montreal, QC, Canada) has called upon Bluefin Payment Systems (Atlanta, GA) for PCI-Validated Point-to-Point Encryption (P2PE) for its Nomad 2 for Mobile POS. An industry first, according to the two parties, Nomad 2 will now support, with state-of-the-art security, MSR, SRED, and Chip-and-Signature and Chip-and-PIN EMV. It employs the CorePay Secure Software Development Kit from AnywhereCommerce and Decryptex Platform from Bluefin.
"We are proud to partner with a leading security organization such as Bluefin to extend the benefits of P2PE to mobile environments," enthused William Nichols, CEO of AnywhereCommerce. "Using our CorePay Secure SDK, developers and ISVs can quickly and easily enhance the security of their solutions for Mobile POS, reduce the complexities of PCI Compliance, and extend peace of mind to merchants." As expected, Nomad 2 fits smartphones or tablets--iOS, Andoid, and Windows.
"Data breaches are top of mind for retailers, software providers, and payment gateways," corroborated Greg Cornwell, SVP of Security Solutions at Bluefin. "Companies such as AnywhereCommerce understand that the key to protecting payment data so that is never accessible to fraudsters is through technologies such as PCI-Validated P2PE." A Participating Organization (PO) of the PCI Security Standards Council (SSC), Bluefin has become active in recruitment of payment stakeholders of late.
AnywhereCommerce's Nomad 2 Gets PCI-Validated Point-to-Point Encryption From Bluefin Payment Systems
According to the ShopKeep Small Business Index, 87% of such merchants have seen little-to-no adoption of mobile payments during the past six months. Despite these findings, 59% of small businesses predict that in the next two years, 50% of consumers will be using mobile payments, such as Apple Pay. The survey also showed that 88% of small business owners are confident in the current state of their business, an 8% decline from Q1 2015. Almost three-quarters of merchants surveyed (72%) reported an increase in revenue over the past six months, and similarly refreshing, 96% remain confident in the success of their business. Year-over-year data from thousands of ShopKeep merchants showed positive growth within all business categories, with an average of 15% increase in sales revenue and 11% increase in total number of transactions. Among verticals, full service restaurants and bars saw the greatest increase in revenue. In the case of bars employing tablet POS from ShopKeep, business surged 47% from Q1 2015. Of the merchants participating in the SSBI, more than 50% of businesses are within their first three years of operations and the majority of owners range in age between 26 and 35. Ah, youth!
Calling on OB
An emergent player in processing, iPayment Inc. (New York City), has engaged industry veteran OB Rawls as Co-President. Prior to joining iPayment, Rawls served as SVP and GM, Partner Solutions, for First Data Corporation. Earlier executive-level positions have included SVP of the Americas Business Unit for Hypercom, GM for International Partnerships at First Data Merchant Services, and President at Unified Merchant Services.
"We remain committed to continuously enhancing our organizational leadership, and as we've demonstrated over the past several years, building the best executive team in the payments industry," reflected Carl Grimstad, CEO of iPayment. "OB is a forward-thinking, innovative leader and his breadth of experience and depth of knowledge in and around payments is the perfect complement to our existing group. After fifteen years of personally working with OB on the First Data team, [I believe his] joining iPayment is truly the natural evolution of his career."
"I loved being part of the team at First Data and cultivating relationships with key partners like iPayment," shared Rawls. "This move is an extension of my career where I am able to contribute directly to iPayment's short and long-term success, while continuing to foster and support First Data. I'm thrilled about having the opportunity to join the incredible team at iPayment." A busy month for iPayment, which also forged ties to Opti-Port (St. Louis, MO) for eye-care providers and Apriva (Scottsdale, AZ) for Mobile EMV POS.
OB Rawls, Co-President, iPayment
An Accent on Retail
Accenture (New York City) has enlisted Jill Standish as its Senior Managing Director for Retail. Carrying heavy credentials, Standish most recently served as SVP and GM of Oracle's Retail Global Business Unit. Previously, she worked for IBM as VP of Retail Store Solutions, followed by VP of IBM's Global Business Services. In 2013, she was named by Consulting Magazine as one of their Top 25 Consultants in the Retail Industry.
"I am delighted to welcome Jill to our senior leadership team," commented Sander van't Noordende, Group CEO for Products at Accenture. "Jill is a recognized leader in the industry and her experience and skills will be valuable assets as we continue to execute our strategy and deliver value for our clients." In making its announcement, Accenture noted, in particular, her experience in digital and store transformation projects.
Jill Standish, Senior Managing Director for Retail, Accenture
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