There are people who believe that cash and coins are obsolete — someday, futurists claim, all money will be virtual. Some companies are already preparing for a transition by replacing retail cash registers with mobile devices.
Handhelds with credit card readers, running Microsoft Windows CE and often based on rugged devices from Intermec and Motorola, are described as mobile point-of-sale products and have been available for years. There are even Research In Motion BlackBerry options. But then the Apple iPhone came out, and that’s changing the game.
Checkout devices built on iPhone or iPod Touch units are smaller, cheaper, and more adaptable than their Windows ancestors. Several small companies are joining this trend and they’ll soon be followed by an 800-pound gorilla — hello, Oracle.
Big or small, these companies deliver three major benefits to retailers. The technology differentiates the shopping experience, eliminates lines at checkout counters, and minimizes the chances of customers changing their minds.Read More