Card Terminals: A thing of the past?

Card Terminals: A thing of the past?

We’ve talked about mobile commerce and how new ways to pay would have an effect on cards, but maybe the biggest shift we will see in the near term is mobile phones taking on the role of the payment terminal.

Following the success of Square in the US (processing $5bn p.a.) and iZettle in Europe (25k customers in just 6 months) it was only a matter of time before more firms moved into the lucrative small-to-medium business (SMB) acceptance space. PayPal already have huge global SMB customer base by virtue of their e-commerce proposition so it was surely an obvious decision for them to play in this space and the recent launch of ‘PayPal Here’ saw 1,000 sign-ups per hour for the first 24 hours and over 200k sign ups in its first few weeks.

The rapid adoption of mobile acceptance products possibly highlights the lack of an adequate solution being offered to this merchant segment for many years. These new firms are simply responding to their unmet needs: SMBs want a cheap way to accept cards and often operate in places without a suitable infrastructure for a payment terminal, like a market stall for example.

Perhaps in response to their success, Verifone has entered the fray with their ‘SAIL’ product which appears to go a step further than the current “new world” offerings. Is this too much for SMBs or will this kill off the competition? Time will tell but one thing is for sure, paying with a card is now more likely to be an option than ever.

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