Our Product Pick
MobileDemand (Hiawatha, IA) has unveiled its second generation of rugged tablets, the 8" Flex 8A and 10" Flex 10A. As performance, they feature Intel Atom Quad-Core CPU at 2 GHz, 4-GB RAM, 64-GB eMMC, and Windows 10. In weight of 1.4 lbs. for the Flex 8A and 2.4 lbs. for the Flex 10A, they have the company's durable construction, including scratch-proof screen protector, polycarbonate case, rubber bumpers, and MIL-STD-810G. As wireless, Flex 8A has 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.2, Flex 10A has 802.11a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth 4.2. Both carry capacitive touchscreens and five-megapixel rear-facing and two-megapixel front-facing cameras. As base prices: Flex 8A, $495; Flex 10A, $595. "With this launch, MobileDemand has the ability to deliver productivity improvements to an increasingly wide range of customers," noted the company.
Rugged Tablets by MobileDemand
Revel's SF Earthquake
A seismic shift at one of the high-flying promoters of tablet-based POS, Revel Systems (San Francisco, CA), has resulted in the exit of founders Lisa Falzone, CEO and President, and Chris Ciabarra, CTO. It was driven by private equity firm Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe (WCAS), which led an initial investment round of $100 million in 2014, and added $65 million in January, making it the majority shareholder. Subsequently, it hired Scott Betts as the new CEO of Revel Systems. His background includes CEO of Global Cash Access, President of Merchant Services at First Data, and VP and GM of Procter & Gamble. Interestingly, Betts came out of retirement.
"During the past two years, Revel has driven significant product innovation, gained market traction in key industry verticals, recruited terrific talent to the team, and demonstrated strong client traction and growth," commented Eric Lee, General Partner at WCAS. "Looking forward, we believe there is significant market potential for Revel's leading cloud-based POS. As we do, we especially want to welcome Scott Betts as the company's new CEO. With deep technology solutions and global operations experience, he will bring terrific strategic and operational focus as we drive this next phase of growth."
As widely reported in the Silicon Valley press, Revel Systems has experienced some bumpy times of late. In addition to the challenges of today's highly competitive market for POS, several lawsuits have plagued Revel. These have focused on vacation and overtime policies for employees, and have revealed the high-pressure sales environment not uncommon in Silicon Valley. Founded in 2010, Revel Systems had valuation of $500 million in 2015. Before her departure, Falzone had predicted profitability in 2018.
Lisa Falzone, Former CEO, Revel Systems
ScanSource Gets Dynamic
A shoe has dropped, in some sense, with the new distribution agreement between Touch Dynamic (Irvington, NJ) and ScanSource POS and Barcode (Greenville, SC). Since its launch in 2001, Touch Dynamic has become one of the prominent players in channel POS, with its family of Acrobat, Breeze, Pulse, and Saturn All-in-Ones. "We are excited to work with ScanSource," relayed Craig Paritz, President of Touch Dynamic. "A mutually beneficial partnership will ensure we are able to provide more resellers with the rugged tablet and All-in-One solutions required for the industry's changing landscape."
"Demands on our reseller partners continue to evolve--with an ever-growing need to provide more convenient, tablet-based solutions to their end-user customers," observed Paul Constantine, President of ScanSource POS and Barcode, U.S. and Canada. "We are happy to be able to provide our resellers with Touch Dynamic's high-quality products, so that they can expand their solution offering for their customers." Its new distribution pact with Touch Dynamic covers the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.
In addition to ScanSource, Touch Dynamic distributes via BlueStar (Hebron, KY), Metropolitan Sales (Lynbrook, NY), and M-S Cash Drawer (Pasadena, CA). In August, it debuted its Quest II Tablet. In Windows or Android, the Quest II has an Intel Quad-Core Bay Trail CPU at 1.33 GHz, 2-GB RAM, and 32-GB SSD. It comes in 7" and 10" screen sizes (true-flat design, projected-capacitive touch) with Bluetooth, an IP-54 rating, 4-ft./1.2-m drop resistance, eight-hour-shift battery, and MSR/NFC. It added SIM Card, biometric fingerprint reader, more powerful scan engine (Honeywell's N3680), and Level 2 EMV Certification.
Touch Dynamic's 7" Quest II With 8" Rear Display
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Of C-Store, Code, and Commander
In news of particular interest to the convenience store segment, Code Corporation (Salt Lake City, UT) has certified its barcode readers with the Commander Platform from Verifone (San Francisco, CA). In particular, this involves two models: Code's CR5000 and CR900FD. "With this certification, we can provide retailers an efficient, seamless, and reliable point-of-sale experience for their customers," expressed Garrett Russell, VP of Sales and Marketing at Code.
A two-dimensional presentation imager, the CR5000 measures 6 in. (H) x 3.5 in (W) x 2.8 in. (D), and weighs 11.2 oz. It provides hands-free reading or optional trigger reading. Advanced data handling facilitates system integration, including iOS, with customizable driver license formatting to populate fields for loyalty and credit forms. Also, it allows end-users to store coupons or signatures without specialized software, and offers optional Age Verification. "Designed for robust retail environments," stated Code.
"A light, affordable reader," weighing 3.9 oz., and employable in-stand or out-of-stand, the CR900FD features one-dimensional imaging. Its capability may be upgraded to two-dimensional reading via optional licensing. For increased efficiency, end-users may select continuous scan or motion detection. Both the CR5000 and CR900FD feature robust, omnidirectional reading, and handle less-than-ideal barcodes as well as barcodes from mobile device screens, emphasized Code.
Code Corporation's CR5000 Barcode Scanner
MagTek: Quite the tDynamo
MagTek, Inc. (Seal Beach, CA) has unwrapped its "three-way" secure card reader, designated, fittingly, "tDynamo." As such, it accepts magnetic-stripe, chip card, and contactless payments, with an ability to easily switch between countertop and mobile environments. A long swipe path delivers one of the highest first swipe read rates in the industry, according to MagTek. It has dimensions of 3.9 in. (L) x 3.2 in. (W) x 0.6 in. (D) and weighs 4 oz. (without stand).
Addressing data protection, tDynamo employs end-to-end encryption with 3DES and key management with industry-standard DUKPT. In addition, there's MagTek's MagneSafe Security Architecture for Payment Card Industry (PCI) Level 1 Certification and EMV. It connects via USB, supports iOS, Android, and Windows, and has indicators for Wireless (Blue) and Status LED (Red/Green/Amber). A Li-Ion battery provides 1.5 hours between charges in mobile mode.
"Customers have to ask themselves if they need a countertop or mobile card reader," expounded John Arato, VP and GM for Retail Products at MagTek. "Whether they want a fixed POS by the door, or they want to allow line busting mobile payments on the floor, the tDynamo offers the flexibility for users to create the best payment experience." A charging dock for tDynamo can be simply mounted to the table with screw and nut.
MagTek's tDynamo Credit Card Reader
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On PAR With CRS Texas
A significant new reseller for PAR PixelPoint POS: CRS Texas (Houston, TX). CRS Texas has 10 offices in six states, with plans to expand in Q1 2017. With PAR PixelPoint POS, it will further its efforts in the quick-service restaurant, fast-casual, and full-service dining segments. It also handles Aldelo (Pleasanton, CA), Digital Dining (Springfield, VA), Dinerware (Seattle, WA), and RPower (Scottsdale. AZ). (Both Digital Dining and Dinerware, of course, are now part of processor Heartland Payment Systems.) "PixelPoint can bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table," stated Brian Smith, President of CRS Texas.
"We are pleased to be partnering with CRS Texas, one of the largest POS VARs in the U.S. CRS' strong reputation and success is what attracted us," shared Lee Crook, Senior Director of POS Product Management for ParTech (New Hartford, NY), a subsidiary of PAR. "With newly hired PixelPoint certified technicians on staff, and the training program that is currently taking place within their sales and service teams, we are confident CRS Texas customers will be extremely satisfied with the secure and flexible solutions that can be created with PAR's PixelPoint POS."
Elsewhere, ParTech will deploy its cloud-based Brink POS Software for Mediterranean-focused restaurant chain, Cava. It includes EverServ 8000 POS Terminals, PAR Tablets, and Kitchen Display System (KDS). Cava's 23 locations can be found in its home market of Washington, DC (including Maryland and Virginia), in New York City's Union Square, as well as three locations in the Los Angeles Area. It plans to open at least 10 additional locations in 2017. "Our time with Brink has been centered on honest and open communication, which feels more like a budding relationship rather than a typical forced client-contract negotiation," testified Josh Patchus, Chief Data Scientist and Director of Technology at Cava.
ParTech EverServ 8000 With PixelPoint POS
In Good Company at iPayment
An interesting new partnership for iPayment, Inc., in the form of Company.Com. It enables partners of iPayment to extend the full suite of business services offered by Company.Com. This includes equipment rental, e-mail services, website, tech support, and human resources--as well as, of course, payment processing suits the SMB.
"We're fortunate to service and support over 140,000 small and medium-sized customers, either directly or through our partners, and we understand that the needs of these customers extend far beyond a merchant account and payment processing," reflected O.B. Rawls IV, CEO of iPayment, Inc. "It's core to our value proposition to source qualified partners, like Company.Com, to expand our indirect and direct offerings with a keen focus on delivering meaningful business tools for the SMB marketplace. We are excited to be able to bring a value-based suite, like the one offered by Company.Com, to both our partners and merchant customers."
"We are delighted to serve iPayment and their direct and partner customers with a custom-designed business suite of services to increase the value iPayment brings their merchant clients," added Bill Wade, CEO of Company.Com. "Our program, with over 470,000 registered entities, has shown mutual benefits to all involved: enhanced value to the business customer, reduced attrition, increased share of wallet for our partners, and the opportunity to customize our product offerings resulting in the suite that we offer today through iPayment." Company.Com started in 2008.
O.B. Rawls IV, CEO, iPayment
Datacap Systems (Chalfont, PA) has completed U.S. EMV Level 3 Certification with Vantiv Integrated Payments (Durango, CO) for the L5200 and L5300 terminals by Equinox (Scottsdale, AZ). A popular middleware for integrated payments, NETePay by Datacap Systems now allows VARs and ISVs plug-and-play access to the Equinox L5200 and L5300 via Vantiv IP--in addition to existing EMV-Certified PIN Pads from Ingenico (Alpharetta, GA) and Verifone (San Francisco, CA). Earlier, Datacap completed U.S. EMV Level 3 Certification with Chase Paymentech (Dallas, TX) for the Equinox L5200 and L5300. "We're glad to add the Equinox L5200 and L5300 to our growing list of Certified EMV-enabled devices," indicated Justin Zeigler, Director of Product Strategy at Datacap Systems. "Installation flexibility is paramount for the channel, so the ability to provide options in EMV from leading providers like Equinox, Ingenico, and Verifone, with more devices in the pipeline, puts our partners in a better position to capitalize on sales opportunities." A who's-who of processors are supported by NETePay by Datacap Systems.
Support Your Local Hero
It's an app world, so it's no surprise that associated marketplaces are popping up like mushrooms. As only the latest example, the Retail Management Hero (RMH) Marketplace. As the replacement for Microsoft Dynamics Retail Management System (RMS), which ends life on July 31, 2020, RMH has been co-developed by Retail Hero (Surrey, BC, Canada) and Retail Realm (Napa, CA), and rolled out to the channel for POS. In the manner of RMS, it specifically suits the SMB.
As an online resource, naturally, the RMH Marketplace has add-ons and integrations across the retail business spectrum, including accounting, business intelligence, customer loyalty, e-commerce, mobility, payment processing, vertical-specific functionality, back-end reporting--and POS. At present, it lists vendors such as Aures Technologies, Cayan, Loyal Mark, NitroSell, Posiflex, and Vantiv. "As a software developer, we're eager to see how the RMH Marketplace will allow us to bring our RMH add-on products to the market, but more importantly, as a solution provider, we're eager to see the value it will bring to our clients by allowing us to find tailored, vetted solutions for their particular needs," indicated Rick Feuling, CEO of Retail Information Technology Enterprises (Sartell, MN).
Earlier, Tony Winters, Director of Products and Projects for Retail Realm, shared some details of RMH with RRN.Com: "It includes all of the features that retailers love in RMS. Many of the hot keys, for example, are the same in RMH as RMS. In completely rewriting the interface, we've made major improvements in the back office, especially to purchase order processing, inventory control, and accounts receivable, as well as user-defined color schemes. A fully compatible, seamless database structure maintains all master data [for RMS and RMH]."
Retail Management Hero Marketplace
ENCOR Takes Bow at NCR
NCR Corporation (Duluth, GA) has launched its new solution for retailers in the SMB, dubbed NCR ENCOR. Available exclusively through the NCR Interact Partner Program in North America, NCR ENCOR encompasses point-of-sale, front office, and back-office functionality. In addition, it leverages the vendor's commerce hub, NCR Retail ONE, which includes an ecosystem of third-party solutions.
"We saw the need in the small to mid-sized market to develop an end-to-end, future-ready solution that provides complete, best-in-class functionality, while reducing the complexity and cost associated with using multiple products," relayed Ron Allcock, Channel Leader of Global Sales at NCR Retail Solutions. "So we converged the best DNA of our industry-leading products, added innovative functionality, and topped it off with an intuitive, modern user interface. The result is a single solution that addresses the current needs of independent grocers, protects their investment as those needs continue to evolve, and positions them to not react to--but lead--unified commerce initiatives."
Aimed at single stores and scalable to the enterprise, NCR ENCOR has been designed to support omnichannel demands. Its functionality may be expanded to include Connected Services, an enterprise reporting, electronic journal, and cashier analysis solution, as well as Connected Payments, the vendor's specified payments gateway. As hardware, NCR recommends its compact, feature-rich RealPOS XR4 or RealPOS XR8.
Screen of NCR ENCOR for the SMB Retailer
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Dumac Emboldens RORCv6
Dumac Business Systems (Syracuse, NY), one of the longstanding VARs for POS, has added two new integrations to its software for independent grocers, entitled "RORCv6." Built upon the Retailer Owned Research Company (or RORC), which Dumac purchased in 2015, RORCv6 (for Version 6) now ties to BRdata (Melville, NY) and Index (San Francisco, CA). Its new partnerships were demonstrated at this week's National Grocers Association (NGA) Show in Las Vegas, NV.
With BRdata, customers of RORCv6 gain functions such as digital couponing, customer loyalty, reporting of data, and e-commerce capability, according to Dumac. It's delivered as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). With Index, which provides hosted gateway and semi-integrated payments, RORCv6 customers have access to EMV with "Quick Chip," point-to-point encryption (P2PE), processing flexibility, and remote management of PIN Pads. Its hosted gateway holds Payment Card Industry (PCI) Level 1 Certification. Also, Dumac has redesigned the user screens of RORCv6, allowing choice of color for branding purposes.
"We understand that a one-size-fits-all model for managing and implementing various capabilities through a POS system doesn't really work for independent groups," declared Phil McCarthy, VP of Dumac Business Systems. "In order to manage, market, and grow their business, they need technology solutions developed specifically with their store's needs in mind. That's why we're particularly excited about these new integrations with BRdata and Index. Independently owned supermarkets now have more choices when it comes to the software and solutions they use to run their business operations."
A Pair of Integrations for RORCv6 for Grocery
Symphony in a Fishbowl
If you walk any trade show in retail or hospitality, you're likely struck by the overwhelming interest in data analytics. Along such lines, one of the up-and-comers, Fishbowl (Alexandria, VA), has attracted the interest of the private equity folks. With its acquisition by the Symphony Technology Group (STG), it adds Marc Bala, STG Managing Director, and Adam Hendricks, STG VP, to its Board of Directors. A partner of Epson America (Long Beach, CA), Fishbowl offers its customer engagement platform for restaurants, which draws upon data collected from the point-of-sale, loyalty programs, and reservations.
"We found immediate alignment in terms of our long-term vision and strategic synergies with STG. They have a tremendous track record of delivering innovation and scale in the analytics and CRM space," enthused Dev Ganesan, CEO of Fishbowl. "STG's investment and strategic support will allow us to scale our platform, empower restaurant brands to deliver successful customer experience and engagement, and revolutionize the restaurant industry."
"Fishbowl is an established leader in the restaurant industry with an excellent track record of providing innovative and mission-critical solutions that serve the needs of more than 250 of the world's leading brands and restaurant chains," emphasized Bala. "We are thrilled to partner with Dev and the Fishbowl team to help accelerate the growth of the company's next-generation customer engagement platform and to drive even more value for the leading brands that rely on Fishbowl daily to increase traffic and sales. We are looking forward to the journey ahead."
Site of Fishbowl's New Dallas Office
A number of factors are driving the rapid shift to unified commerce, according to the "2017 POS/Customer Engagement Benchmarking Survey" from Boston Retail Partners. A quartet of key pillars were identified: personal, mobile, seamless, and secure. In the area of personalization, 75% of retailers plan to use Wi-Fi to identify customers with their mobile devices in the store by the end of 2019. In the same time-frame, 80% will suggestive-sell based on previous purchases. Addressing another pillar, 89% of retailers will offer mobile solutions for associates within three years. Another 84% will offer mobile POS. A desire for seamless and personalized customer experiences will drive 71% of retailers to have a unified commerce platform by the end of three years, and within two years, 60% plan to have centralized POS. Of security, 96% of retailers will have end-to-end encryption by the end of three years, while 73% will offer a single token solution across the enterprise by the end of 2019. "Unified commerce goes beyond omnichannel, putting the customer experience first, breaking down the walls between internal channel silos, and leveraging one common platform," advised Brian Brunk, Principal at Boston Retail Partners.
Barcoding, Inc.: Practice Makes Perfect
Barcoding, Inc. (Baltimore, MD) has enlisted Patrick Richgels as its Field Engineer for RFID. He comes from Monsanto Company, with more than 10 years of experience as IT Specialist in Passive UHF RFID. A leading developer and reseller of Auto ID, Barcoding. Inc. formalized its RFID Practice in 2014. Tom O'Boyle, veteran of Miles Technology (1998 to 2013) and Zebra Technologies (1987 to 1998), serves as Director of RFID for Barcoding, Inc.
"I've had the pleasure of working with Barcoding, Inc. on many projects through my previous company," recounted Richgels. "I look forward to joining the Barcoding team full-time in order to focus solely on implementing unique solutions for RFID." As near-term trends in this area, Barcoding, Inc. sees expansion of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and Wide Area RFID Systems.
Also, Barcoding, Inc. has established its Enterprise Mobility Services. As elements, it features evaluation of existing systems, setting metrics for new platforms, training of staff, and deployment support. "A true partner for our clients," in the words of Martin Jack, CTO of Barcoding, Inc., "we look to make sure they have the most up-to-date solutions in place that enables them to be successful in their daily operations."
Patrick Richgels, Field Engineer for RFID, Barcoding, Inc.
A Pair of Thumbs on Detecto's Scales
Detecto (Webb City, MO), part of the Cardinal Scale Manufacturing Co., has beefed up its sales force. After six months as Foodservice National Sales Rep, Brad Testerman has been promoted to Foodservice and Retail POS National Sales Manager. At the same time, Detecto has engaged Dustin Moreland as its new Foodservice National Sales Rep.
"Brad brings a world-class level of professionalism and salesmanship to Detecto foodservice management," reported Jonathan Sabo, VP of Marketing for Detecto. "He is highly respected by our customers within the foodservice industry and has a strategic vision of sales leadership to continue Detecto's growth into the future."
Both Testerman and Moreland bring experience in the pharmaceutical and IT industries. Interestingly, Testerman also has owned two Sonic restaurant franchises, one of them being the largest at the time in the U.S. Of particular interest to our channel: Enterprise APS Series Retail POS Scales by Detecto.
New Sales Duo at Detecto: Brad Testerman and Dustin Moreland
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