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Poynt, the Perfectly Designed Payment Terminal

Mobile Commerce Insider Featured Article

October 31, 2014

Poynt, the Perfectly Designed Payment Terminal

By Michael Guta
TMCnet Contributing Writer

Human beings are very visual, and whenever we see something we admire, depending on the impact it is having on us, all we can say is ooh, wow and stare with our mouths wide open. This of course doesn’t happen all the time, but there are occasions when you see a perfectly designed product and these reactions are more than appropriate. When I saw the new payment terminal by Poynt, my initial reaction was wow! Followed by another wow! This is a beautifully designed product that should appeal to anyone who appreciates simplicity in design, which Poynt can say it has delivered on all points. So the question now becomes, is its beauty only skin deep or does it have enough substance for merchants to start forming a long-term relationship with it?

Poynt has pedigree, it was established by former head of Google (News - Alert) Wallet and PayPal exec, Osama Bedier. His understanding of the payment ecosystem meant this device will provide at least some of the functions of many of the devices in the market place, but Poynt goes much further.

One of the objectives of the unit, besides looking incredible, was to future-proof the platform so it can support all existing payment technologies as well as have the necessary hardware to accept emerging solutions in an all-in-one device. Poynt supports traditional magstripe cards, EMV (chip and pin), NFC (Google Wallet and Apple (News - Alert) Play), Bluetooth, QR codes, and beacon technology, which is everything but cash.

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The hardware specs are impressive, but the software side of the device is equally notable with a terminal, register and a “co-pilot” app, which provides different data points with insight into purchases, transactions and more. Additionally, the PoyntOS SDK allows merchants to break free from traditional platforms with outdated technology that forced them to integrate propriety systems.

With this SDK, developers can create custom solution previously only available to large companies to anyone using its PoyntOS, an Android (News - Alert)-based application platform and RESTful APIs for integration over cloud.

According to techcrunch, the company has raised Series A round led by Matrix Partners, which includes participation from Webb Investment Network (founded by Visa board member Maynard Webb), Nyca Partners (founded by former Visa VP Hans Morris), and other angels.

Beider went on to tell techcrunch, “For the first in payments infrastructure history, every one of the 16 million terminals in the country will change over to a different device…in the history of payment terminals, that’s never happened before. No one has ever been able to change these things before.”

Some of the features of Poynt include:

  • An Ethernet port,
  • Support for Wi-Fi, 3G and 4G,
  • USB extension for additional hardware such as scales or cash drawers,
  • A docking station and an 8-hour battery so it can be used by employees throughout a store,
  • Built-in Beacon technology to interact with mobile devices,
  • A printer for receipts, and
  • Access to the app on smartphones for remote access to data and more.

The adoption of new technology by merchants has met a lot of resistance, and when Apple announced it will be entering the segment by providing Apple Pay it forever changed the ecosystem. Within the first month of this announcement, Apple had more than 500 banks and hundreds of retailers signed on to use its payment system.

This has made solutions like Poynt, the ideal platform to start accepting payments from solutions such as Apple Pay with a single device that incorporates all existing payment systems with an easy to use, secure and competitively priced ($299) solution.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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