mPOS-ible To Define? What Mobile Means In Retail
The term mPOS is bandied about our marketplace constantly these days, but ask what it means, and you’ll get some creative answers. As often happens with technology trends, new terms emerge to define the trend, but few people can agree on its definition.
With mPOS, the good news is it can mean what you want it to mean. The bad news is the variety of definitions generates confusion about what the technology really is.
It’s clear that most people associate mPOS with mobile, but what that means can vary. So far, we’ve come across at least four definitions:
- Supplanting the cash register with a smartphone, tablet or dedicated wireless device.
- Accepting payment for consumer goods through “mobile wallet” smartphone apps such as Apple Pay, Tap & Pay, Square or Google Wallet in lieu of swiping a payment card or using cash.
- Accepting payment through a third-party intermediary, such as PayPal or Bitcoin.
- Enabling consumers to complete an in-store purchase no matter where they’re standing because the clerk can bring the checkout to them via a mobile device.
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