Our Product Pick
Arbor Solution (San Jose, CA) has debuted its Gladius G0975 Rugged Tablet, with 9.7" projected capacitive touchscreen. It features Intel Quad Core Celeron Bay Trail CPU at 1.8 GHz, 2-GB RAM (expandable to 8-GB), and support for Windows. A wide range of functionality (magnetic-stripe reader, two-dimensional scanner, camera), of connectivity (USB, Mini-USB, SD Card, HDMI), and of communications (Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, WLAN) extend versatility. With weight of 2.2 lbs., it meets standards for IP-65 and MIL-STD-810G, and carries an MSRP starting at $1,118 (without O/S). "With its compact size and low power consumption, our Gladius G0975 tablet provides the ideal solution for increasing productivity and reducing cost in the retail environment," suggested Brian Yurkiw, VP at Arbor.
Gladius G0975 Rugged Tablet
Datalogic: "There's Not A Two Without A Three"
Spending much of her time here, Valentina Volta, CEO of the Business Development Division at Datalogic (Bologna, Italy), has set the lofty goal of doubling revenue in the U.S. The daughter of Romano Volta, who founded Datalogic in 1972, Valentina recently spoke with RRN.Com on the state of Auto ID. In her remarks, she emphasized the strong position of Datalogic, despite industry consolidation by Zebra and Honeywell. "In Italy, we say 'There's not a two without a three,'" she reflected.
"We're focused on serving our customers, and being the best technology provider, not obsessing with competitors," stated Volta. "We believe we cannot reach this goal, particularly in the U.S., without the support of our partners. Since our structure is lean, compared to some, we are positioned to respond quickly to our partners' needs, with flexibility and customization."
Worldwide, Datalogic enjoys revenues of $600 million. "I'm not sure some people realize the size of our company and the breadth of our technology--not just scanners, but mobile computers and industrial automation," postulated Volta. "We remain focused on our partners, we're stable, and we're growing. Our philosophy is to create value together." In the U.S., Datalogic is based in Eugene, Oregon and Telford, Pennsylvania. It has an additional R&D Center in Pasadena, California.
Valentina Volta, CEO, Business Development Division, Datalogic
Altogether in Austin
In somewhat of a "distressed sale," Xplore Technologies Corporation has snapped up Motion Computing. Both makers of rugged tablets are based in Austin, Texas. Xplore will pay approximately $9 million, plus the assumption of approximately $7 million in net liabilities, totaling $16 million. Xplore plans to consummate the transaction using proceeds from its new $15 million credit facility with Square 1 Bank.
In its most recent fiscal year ended December 31, 2014, Motion's unaudited revenue was approximately $83 million, with net loss of approximately $7 million. By comparison, Xplore reported revenue of approximately $36 million, up 17%. As of last week, Motion Computing employed 80, bringing the newly combined workforce to about 120 employees."Acquisition of Motion is consistent with our goal to establish the best and broadest line of rugged tablets for the enterprise market," declared Philip Sassower, Chairman and CEO of Xplore. "Motion represents a unique opportunity for Xplore to acquire an Austin-based company with deep industry domain expertise and that possesses products and channels complementary to our own [including half its sales outside the U.S.]. Together we will address a broader range of customer needs and provide a 'one-stop-shop' for rugged tablets."
Xplore Technologies Buys Motion Computing
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NRA Show 2015
ALL IN THE FAMILY
TEAMSable's Year AD1000
TEAMSable POS (San Jose, CA) has unveiled its new Android Terminal, dubbed the AD1000. It features sleek, simple housing, bezel-free design, and 15" five-wire resistive touchscreen (1366x768/16:9). Technical characteristics include Quad Cortex A9 CPU at 1 GHz, 1-GB RAM, and 8-GB ROM. A full suite of ports support necessary peripherals and networking.
Overall, AD1000 measures 15.7 in. (W) x 7.9 in. (D) x 13.5 in. (H) and weighs 6.6 lbs. Ease of use has been addressed with an adjustable stand, wide viewing angle, and external access to HDD. Another benefit is onboard 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi. AD1000 comes with three-year warranty, free lifetime phone tech support, and free overnight rapid replacement with call tag for 60 days after date of purchase.
"We engineered our AD1000 Android Terminal to offer exceptional performance and value to the channel," relayed Kathy Wu, Director of Sales for TEAMSable POS. "It has many unique features and a low price point that crushes the competition in the same class." Her company also will give an accompanying free 10" Android POS Terminal, with stand, to resellers purchasing the AD1000 Android Terminal for the first time. As distribution partner, TEAMSable has called upon the STORESolv Group at Synnex (Greenville, SC).
AD1000 Android POS Terminal by TEAMSable
Posiflex Extolled by Red Dot
Posiflex Business Machines (Haywood, CA) has won the prestigious Red Dot Award - Product Design 2015 for its hybrid POS, the MT4008. Now in its 60th year, the Red Dot has become the most recognized product competition in the world, attracting entries from leading global brands. In all, its panel of experts evaluates almost 5,000 entries from 56 countries.
The Posiflex MT4008 bridges the gap between mobile and stationary POS. It consists of detachable 8" tablet and base station holding three-inch receipt printer, Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, and I/O's (USB 2.0 x 3, Serial x 2, Cash Register, and LAN). The tablet features projected capacitive touchscreen (1024x768), magnetic-stripe reader (MSR), and optional pistol grip. This grip offers additional battery life and two-dimensional scanner. Serving as stationary POS, the combined tablet and docking station measures 8.3 in. (W) x 6.8 in. (D) x 13.9 in. (H) and runs Windows 8.1 Industry Pro."We are delighted to have won a Red Dot Award - Product Design 2015, which recognizes the very best in design quality and reinforces the importance that we place on in-house design and manufacturing at the highest level," reported Owen Chen, CEO/President at Posiflex Technology (Taipei, Taiwan). "The MT4008 redefines mobility, providing a truly mobile solution, one that is easy and light to use but which also has all the advantages of a stationary POS system." Introduced in late 2014, the MT4008 has been well-received by partners in U.S. and European markets, disclosed Posiflex.
Posiflex MT4008 Hybrid POS Station
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Shift4 Enlarges the Realm
Shift4 (Las Vegas, NV) has offered payment processing for Retail Realm Essentials, the stripped down version of Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail that specifically targets the SMB. Customers of Retail Realm (Napa, CA), the exclusive distributor of Essentials, can now use Shift4's popular DOLLARS ON THE NET payment gateway to provide "fast, reliable, and secure processing of credit, debit, and gift cards," according to the two parties. As its name suggests, Retail Realm Essentials delivers the functionality required to run retail operations without unnecessary aspects of Dynamics AX.
For its system, Shift4 employs both point-to-point encryption (P2PE) and "TrueTokenization." It also provides advanced fraud controls, pre- and post-settlement auditing, and reporting capabilities that help merchants avoid fines and downgrades by preventing erroneous transactions, as well as bank and processor neutrality. Finally, it accommodates EMV, as well as mobile, e-commerce, and mail order/telephone-order transactions.
"With our full integration to Retail Realm Essentials, small retail organizations can now almost completely eliminate card data from their environments," commented Shift4 CEO Dave Oder. "This means their annual PCI assessments will be simplified and--more importantly--they will be protected from the rash of breaches that is currently plaguing our industry." A long-standing, non-exclusive partner of Retail Realm, Shift4 also supports Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail and the Microsoft Dynamics Retail Management System (RMS).
Dave Oder, CEO, Shift4
It's Great To Be An ISV
Epson America (Long Beach, CA) continues its pursuit of insurgent ISVs, with enrollments of Bindo (New York City) and E-tab (St. Louis, MO). Both ISVs have been attracted by Epson's OmniLink printer architecture, which incorporates processing power and memory to drive third-party applications and peripherals. (Acting as hub, in other words.) Brought into the fold are Epson's TM-T88V-i and TM-T20II-i receipt printers, as well as the Epson TM-U220B kitchen printer. (Epson differentiates OmniLink with the "i" for intelligent.)
"Epson's leading POS printer solutions are the ideal fit for our iPad POS platform," testified David Bozin, "Growth Officer" at Bindo. "We are growing rapidly and needed to team up with a company that could add the functionality needed to keep up with our customer demands for streamlined and smart POS." Aggressive of late, Bindo has designated Dan Merns as Head of Channel Sales & Marketing.
Of E-tab, Tom Kettell, Director of Commercial Channel Sales at Epson America, observed, "By providing a free application that enables customers to place orders, request service, and pay their bills with their own smartphones, E-tab is a truly innovative self-service technology company. By integrating this with our seamless and smart printing solutions, E-tab can further facilitate the way customers want to be served and expedite ordering while ensuring reduced operating delays." Added Jeff Stein, President of E-tab, "We were looking to partner with a printer company that could complement our self-service mobile app to provide restaurant operators with an easy and reliable solution that integrates with their current kitchen workflow."
Epson Adds More ISVs for OmniLink, Including Bindo iPad POS
BellHawk Systems Corporation (Millbury, MA) has released its warehouse management system (WMS) with purchase price of $3,000 or subscription cost of $200 per month. Installed on Windows Server (or remote data center), it tracks materials by location, nested container, lot and serial numbers, and expiration date. With optional modules, users can specify parameters such as length, width, size, color, and quality for both incoming materials and for the picking/packing and shipping of outgoing materials, eliminating the need for customization. It can run stand-alone or, optionally, interfaced to a wide range of systems for accounting (such as QuickBooks) and mid-range enterprise resource planning, or ERP (such as Sage 300 or Microsoft Dynamics GP). It also can be integrated with e-commerce websites and incoming and outgoing supply chain systems, including the generation of EDI-based Advanced Ship Notices (ASNs) as well as Packing Slips and Bills of Lading. "BellHawk WMS gives a real-time view of inventory and can quickly pay for itself by replacing the use of paper forms and manual keyboard data entry with the use of wireless mobile computers," stated the company.
NOTES FROM THE FIELD
EVO-lution for Boomtown
EVO Payments International (New York City) has called upon Boomtown (San Francisco, CA) to provide support for customers and developers of its payment processing services. Under this agreement, Boomtown will furnish 24/7 remote troubleshooting--from hardware installations and network set-up to ongoing monitoring--and onsite support services through its brigade of purposefully trained technicians. EVO has launched this partnership program in conjunction with its Snap Mobile POS.
"Taking care of SMB customers goes beyond software and merchant services support," proposed Peter Osberg, SVP of EVO Snap. "It requires a holistic approach to support that includes the merchant's physical environment. We can provide a seamless payment experience at POS, but if a local network goes down or a physical piece of hardware fails, the merchant can't conduct business. Boomtown is the missing link in the support value chain." Once again, targeted specifically are ISVs.
"We are thrilled to partner with such a forward looking organization as EVO who is redefining the SMB customer experience," related Chip Kahn, Boomtown's Founder (and so-called Mayor). "Boomtown's collaborative support software enables us to collectively solve SMB customer issues remotely and onsite. This gives business owners their time back and leads to higher customer satisfaction and retention for their POS software and merchant service provider."
New Source of Tech Support in Payment Processing for Developers and Merchants
A Lone Star in POS
Revention, which is based in Houston, has been designated as a Preferred Partner by the Texas Restaurant Association. This follows "rigorous and lengthy" evaluation, and makes Revention the first company awarded the honor in the past five years. Even more significantly, Revention carries the distinction of being the first and only point-of-sale company ever to be recommended by the Texas Restaurant Association.
"POS systems are an essential part of every restaurant operation, and this partnership with Revention will help our members navigate the ever-changing technology landscape successfully," commented Richie Jackson, CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association. It represents the state's $44.5 billion foodservice industry, which is comprised of 40,000 locations and a workforce of 1.2 million employees. Not surprisingly, Revention will sponsor events such as the Texas Restaurant Association's Marketplace to be held on June 28-29 in Dallas.
"We are humbled and honored to be chosen as the official POS provider for the Texas Restaurant Association," acknowledged Jeff Doyle, CEO/President of Revention. "We look forward to a successful and rewarding partnership." All states have such restaurant associations, it should be noted, which post directories of vendors and service providers, including POS VARs.
Revention Selected as Preferred Partner by Texas Restaurant Association
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Touchscreens & Monitors
Yo, Ho, Ho and Ingenico
Ingenico (Atlanta, GA) will provide its EMV- and NFC-ready payment terminals for quick-service seafood chain Long John Silver's. This upgrade will enable Long John Silver's 580 U.S. locations to accept both magnetic-stripe and EMV cards, and also provides the platform for mobile wallet acceptance, such as Apple Pay. A wide variety of so-called "smart terminals" are offered by Ingenico, all supported by its Telium 2 O/S.
"As we prepared for the advent of chip-based cards, we also wanted to implement a solution with point-to-point encryption (P2PE) to provide bulletproof security over our customers' cardholder data, while also easing the process of meeting increasingly complex PCI requirements," recounted Craig Daniel, CFO for Long John Silver's. "During our competitive evaluation, Ingenico proved to have the most secure technology, the greatest experience with EMV, and the most flexible solution. It allows us to leverage our existing infrastructure without having to spend millions of dollars on network and infrastructure upgrade costs."
In another item of interest, Mark Bunney has joined Ingenico as Head of Strategic Partners. Well versed in POS and Auto ID, Bunney previously served as Director of Channels and Alliance Partners for ParTech. Before that, he was Director of Strategic Alliances for Honeywell Scanning & Mobility.
Ingenico's iCT250 Payment Terminal
The Shoe Fits at Epicor
Epicor Software Corporation (Austin, TX) has been chosen for the technology refresh at The Walking Company. This specialty retailer has deployed Epicor Retail CRM 7.0--the newest release of Epicor Retail CRM--to support the launch of its new loyalty program, and Epicor Retail Clienteling to improve customer engagement. In order to benefit from access to product and customer information provided by Epicor Retail Clienteling, store associates will be outfitted with mobile tablets.
The Walking Company runs more than 200 retail stores in malls throughout the U.S., with major footwear brand names. Based on the success of its Epicor Retail CRM and Clienteling, the retailer has also opted to replace its legacy POS solution to leverage Epicor Retail Store 6.4, the latest version of the Epicor flagship POS. Epicor Retail Store 6.4 carries advanced electronic payment capabilities from AJB Software Design (Mississauga, ON, Canada), including EMV Chip-and-PIN.
"Our customers rely on us to outfit them with the world's best comfort footwear and accessories, and our goal is to keep them coming back with outstanding service," volunteered Mark Mosch, CTO at The Walking Company. "We've made significant investments in our in-store foot scanning technology to determine each customer's exact personalized footwear solution, and our launch of Epicor Retail CRM and Clienteling, and Epicor Retail Store Point of Sale, represents our newest technology investments to further support our customers." According to Noel Goggin, EVP and GM of Epicor Retail, the timeline for this refresh was very compact.
The Walking Company Rolls Out Epicor's CRM, Clienteling, and POS
Retailers are wow for Wi-Fi, according to new research conducted by the IHL Group for Earthlink and Airtight Networks. Almost half of participating retailers, of all sizes and types, claimed increased customer loyalty due to deploying in-store "employee" Wi-Fi, with an associated 3.4% increase in sales. About one-quarter of retailers reported increased customer loyalty due to deploying in-store "customer"Wi-Fi, with an associated 2% increase in sales. In addition, one-fifth of retailers reported an increase in customer dwell time in their stores due to deployment of in-store Wi-Fi. Interestingly, 40% of IT budgets are now allocated to deploying so-called new and innovative systems, compared to historic measures of 15% to 30% of budget. Nearly 70% of specialty retailers are designing their new point-of-sale system based on a central order management system, which will put up to five times more load on the network and require refresh of the WAN. Overall, 34% of retailers will update their store-level Wi-Fi in 2015, and 70% currently outsource their work. "As retailers dramatically upgrade store infrastructures to create the experience of the future, there is a tremendous need for increased bandwidth and security, driven by moving to a single version of the truth for data, mobile devices in the store, and the accompanying systems," indicated Greg Buzek, President of the IHL Group.
A New Merlin for ThingMagic
Trimble (Sunnyvale, CA) has named Brett Humphrys as GM for its ThingMagic Division. Humphrys joined Trimble in 2005, and most recently served as GM of its Global Services Division. Earlier he worked at Eastman Chemical Company, Eastman Kodak, Exxon, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He replaces Tom Grant, previously GM of Trimble's ThingMagic Division, who left the company to pursue new opportunities, according to the firm.
"I am very excited to join the ThingMagic team," shared Humphrys. "For the past 15 years, ThingMagic has been known throughout the RFID industry as the brand that provides accurate, reliable, and high-performance products, with many successful deployments across industries and verticals. As part of the team, I look forward to our continued success in developing new and innovative solutions that can meet the needs of our customers worldwide."
A successful installation for inventory tracking with the company's UHF RFID technology was recently announced for Interstate Batteries. In this case, the ThingMagic Mercury 6e reader module was used with RFID tags from Smartrac (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) and software from Seeonic (Plymouth, MN). A combination of "SightWare" device, "SmartRacks," and Seeonic's Seeniq Cloud achieves 99.8% data accuracy, according to Interstate.
Brett Humphrys, GM, ThingMagic Division, Trimble
Spencer for Hire
A mobile commerce hopeful, Sionic Mobile (Atlanta, GA), has enlisted Spencer White as its COO and EVP of Business Development. Well known in payments, White co-founded Softcard (the AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile mobile wallet joint venture--formerly Isis) whose technology was recently purchased by Google. Prior to Softcard, White served as Director of Mobile Financial Services for AT&T.
"Sionic Mobile has created a powerful platform for both retail and digital commerce that elegantly and deftly combines a simple, high value consumer experience with a sophisticated solution for merchants to attract customers and build profitable, durable, and trusted relationships with them," remarked White. "The test of any mobile commerce solution is its ability to drive consumer behaviors and habits. Leading with a strong loyalty proposition, rather than centering on payments or advertising, Sionic Mobile is well positioned to win big with both consumers and merchants."Targeting the SMB, Sionic Mobile calls its platform "ION Rewards." Consumers earn 2% for purchases as well as bonus "IONs." ION Rewards and "Shop2Give" (for non-profit fund-raising) are offered as free apps for iOS and Android, with 50,000 participating locations in the U.S., reportedly. Ronald Herman serves as CEO of Sionic Mobile.
Spencer White, COO and EVP Business Development, Sionic Mobile
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