Our Product Pick
Zebra (Lincolnshire, IL) has unwrapped its new direct-thermal mobile printer, the 4" ZQ630. In dimensions of 7.3 in. (L) x 6.5 in. (W) x 3.2 in. (D), weighing 2.4 lbs., the ZQ630 has maximum print speed of 4.5 in./115 mm per second at 203 dpi. In clamshell design, the ZQ630 has an easy-to-read color display (288x240), 6800-mAh Lithium-Ion battery, backwards compatibility with accessories of the QLn Series, and Zebra's Print DNA and Link-OS. It also offers read-and-write capacity of UHF EPC Gen 2 RFID. As communications, there's support for 802.11 Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4 Classic and Low Energy, with instant "wake-up." As durability, there's an IP-54 rating and 6-ft./1.8-m drop resistance.
Zebra's ZQ630 Mobile Printer
An Era "Marked" at APG
A truly good guy in our industry, Mark Olson, President and CEO of APG Cash Drawer (Minneapolis, MN), has announced his retirement. In June of this year, APG celebrated its 40th Anniversary, with Olson in charge for 32 (1988 to 2019). During that time, APG has become the most prominent supplier of cash drawers for POS, and now, with its SMARTtill, an innovative supplier of cash management solutions. A very active member, and booster, of the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA), Olson served as its Chairman of the Board in 2012/2013.
As its new President and CEO, APG Cash Drawer has enlisted Paul Griffiths, former CEO of shooting sports company, Birchwood Casey (2018 to 2019). Prior to Birchwood Casey, Griffiths served as GM of office furniture manufacturer, Safco Products Company (2015 to 2018). He has embarked on meetings with many of the customers of APG.
"APG has a history of being a global supplier of world-class products to the retail point-of-sale industry," observed Griffiths. He further noted that "the global retail landscape is changing rapidly, and I look forward to leveraging this strong brand position for the acceleration and development of APG as a leader of global cash management solutions." As for Olson's future intentions, shared with RRN.Com: "My wife has plans to travel a whole lot more . . . maybe she'll let me come along!"
A Transition at APG Cash Drawer: Mark Olson Retires; Introducing New President and CEO, Paul Griffiths
One Step Forza for CRS
CRS, Inc. (St. Paul, MN) has stocked its newest line of POS, designated Forza. Supplied by SAM4S, Forza has four models: Forza 1000 (display: 10.1", 1024x600, 16:9, 180 cd/m2), Forza 1500 (display: 15", 1024x768, 4:3, 350 cd/m2), Forza 1600 (display: 15.6", 1366x768, 16:9, 220 cd/m2), and Forza 1800 (display: 18.5", 1366x768, 16:9, 250 cd/m2). A solid-state design and true-flat projected-capacitive touchscreen enhance performance and reliability, noted CRS, with an offset pedestal accommodating the placing of cube-style receipt printers (such as the SNBC BTP-S80, offered by CRS) in order to save counterspace.
As O/S, Forza supports Microsoft POSReady 7, Windows 7/8 Pro, and Windows 10 IoT. It has choice of processors, such as Intel Celeron J1900 or Intel Core i3 or i5, and 4-GB/8-GB or 4-GB/32-GB RAM (as well as 128-GB 2.5" SSD). A full suite of ports is provided, including Serial x 4, USB x 6, Cash Drawer, Ethernet, Video, and HDMI (with Core i3 or i5). An external power supply and card reader (MSR) are furnished as well as optional customer-facing displays (9", 10", 15" or 2x20 LCD).
"With power and flexibility, Forza serves as an ideal framework for full-service POS," stated CRS, which won the Vendor Award of Excellence for Hardware and Software at the recent Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA) Show in San Antonio, TX. On September 12, in Hasbrouck Heights, NJ, CRS will hold its New Jersey/New York Area CRS Profit Booster Dealer Conference. It will highlight products from the manufacturers distributed by CRS in North America: SAM4S, Shandong New Beiyang Information Technology Co., or SNBC, and Hisense.
CRS Ships Forza POS Terminals by SAM4S
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NRF 2020 Vision
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A Buzz at Star Micronics
Star Micronics America (Somerset, NJ) has produced an interesting accessory for its mC-Print3 thermal printer, an advanced kitchen buzzer called mC-Sound. Measuring 1.7 in. (L) x 1.7 in. (W) x 0.8 in. (D), and weighing 1.6 oz., the mC-Sound may be installed on the top of, on the back of, or inside the mC-Print3. It features 16 preloaded sounds, as well as custom message recording capability, in order to indicate information on order type, order source, and order urgency level.
Shipped as Model MCS10, the mC-Sound has 89-dB sound quality to work in noisy kitchen environments. It helps kitchen staff to quickly recognize what is being ordered, its source (from in-house or online ordering application), and its priority. Users may choose from the variety of sound types and volumes, assign individual sounds to different order types, and play back sounds sent from the host device. A blue LED adds visual notification of the message.
"We wanted to address the issues of low sound quality, complex installation, and lack of various sounds that the optional BU01 buzzer had," commented Christophe Naasz, Director of Business Development at Star Micronics America. "The mC-Sound offers the perfect solution to meet the needs of the industry and further improve the performance of the mC-Print 3. Now kitchen staff can understand what food is being ordered, and from where--all from a single sound." A full product family of printers, cash drawers, scales, and stands for the m-Collection by Star Micronics.
Star Debuts the mC-Sound Kitchen Buzzer
[Editor's Note: A brace of endorsements from ISVs for Star Micronics: for its mG-S8200 NTEP scale (8200 g/18 lbs.) from Square (San Francisco, CA); for its 3" mC-Print3 thermal printer from Cova Software (Denver, CO); for its mG-S322 NTEP scale (320 g/11.3 oz.) from IndicaOnline (Los Angeles, CA). Both Cova Software and IndicaOnline play in the blossoming cannabis market. Square cited frozen yogurt shops, candy stores, and delicatessens for the Star mG-S8200.]
Gamber-Johnson: Taking A Stand
Always fun to introduce new players in our industry. Such is the case with mounting system supplier Gamber-Johnson (Steven's Point, WI), which has presented its new line of products for the Luxe 8500i payment terminals from Equinox Payments (Scottsdale, AZ). A Low Swivel Stand rotates 120 degrees holding the Luxe 8500i, while the Short Clevis Stand rotates 120 degrees and also tilts up to 45 degrees holding the Luxe 8500i. Both are designed with an open hole base for easy cable management and cable strain relief.
At 7.8 in. (W) x 1.3 in. (H), the Equinox Luxe 8500i Low Swivel Stand weighs 1.6 lbs. At 5.3 in. (W) x 1.6 in. (H), the Equinox Luxe 8500i Short Clevis Stand weighs 1.7 lbs. All of the company's payment terminal mounting solutions are compliant with PCI, according to Gamber-Johnson. A black powder coat finish brings corrosion resistance and long-term durability. A hardware kit is offered for easy assembly.
"We believe that our offering brings the durable construction retail environments desire," expressed Garrett Neta, Product Manager at Gamber-Johnson. "We have extensive experience building products that withstand the harshest conditions, while also providing improved user ergonomics, so the move into the point-of-sale/retail environment is a natural progression to grow our business." A longtime supplier of rugged mounting solutions for fleet vehicles, law enforcement/public safety, and the military, Gamber-Johnson plans future products in POS.
Gamber-Johnson Enters the Market With Stands for Luxe 8500i Payment Terminal by Equinox Payments
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Envysion Butters Toast
Another powerful partner for loss prevention provider Envysion (Superior, CO), in the form of Toast POS (Boston, MA). A Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Envysion offers its Managed Video Solution to bring real-time visibility and side-by-side comparison with data from the front-counter, back-office, and guest-facing systems of Toast POS. It allows access for managers at "any time, from any location, from any device."
"Using video to verify exceptions and transactions, and to identify underperforming elements of the business, brings new clarity and decisiveness to the business operator," remarked Kevin Milner, Director of Audit Programs at Envysion. "Adding Envysion's video solutions to Toast's POS and business management systems gives restaurant leaders confidence in the accuracy and quality of their data to make smarter business decisions faster--all while saving time and money." As markets, Envysion focuses on restaurants, convenience stores, cinemas, and more recently, retailers.
In June, Envysion unveiled its new Channel Partner Program. It identifies four categories of participants: Integration, Software, Business Intelligence, and Enterprise & OEM. As part of Software, ISVs and VARs in POS are specifically cited. As benefits, there's account support, sales and technical training, marketing collateral, early access to new product information, preferred pricing, deal registration, web portal, and quarterly or semi-annual business reviews. "By formalizing our channel relationships, we're eliminating the obstacles that often prevent customers from getting the hardware, software, services, and support they need," suggested Howard Finch, VP of Channel Sales at Envysion.
Envysion Brings Video Surveillance to Toast POS
Epson Charts Amazon
A "Quickstart Bundle," available on Amazon, and focusing on the SMB, includes newly launched Lavu 4.0 software for POS and the cube-style 3" TM-m30 thermal receipt printer by Epson America. Also, Lavu has approved use of the Kitchen Display System (KDS) with Epson's 3" OmniLink TM-U220-i dot-matrix printer and KDS Expansion Module with Lavu 4.0. As new features, Lavu 4.0 includes: pre-authorization turned on by default setting, off-line ordering synchronization, date picker with pre-set dates, and kiosk settings with customization.
"Our mission is to ease the burden of day-to-day operations using the latest restaurant technology, and our 4.0 release will be the easiest, fastest, and most reliable platform we have offered to date, allowing our customers to focus their energy where it matters," proclaimed Saleem Khatri, CEO of Lavu (Albuquerque, NM). "It's the result of gathering feedback, listening to our customers, and devoting our time to making the best version of Lavu. Epson's mobile printing solutions have proven to be a great addition for our customers, and we are excited to continue our partnership."
"With the launch of Lavu 4.0, Lavu shows continued dedication to improving its product offering with the latest innovations," reported Tom Kettell, Director, Commercial Channel for North America at Epson America (Long Beach, CA). "We are pleased our companies can continue to collaborate and evolve together to meet the needs of the modern restaurant looking for reliable and innovative POS, KDS, and printing systems that work together seamlessly, leading to improved restaurant management." Also, in August, Epson America's printers were endorsed by hospitality ISV Shiji/Infrasys (Atlanta, GA).
A "Quickstart Bundle" With Lavu 4.0 for the SMB With Epson's TM-m30 Thermal Receipt Printer
Shift4 Opens the Door
A third-party app marketplace has unfolded at Shift4 Payments (Allentown, PA), with an early participant, DoorDash (San Francisco, CA). With this integration, food orders placed for delivery through DoorDash will sync directly with the POS software brands of Shift4, including Harbortouch, Restaurant Manager, POSitouch, and Future POS. As benefits, it saves the restaurant money, frees up counterspace, and streamlines overall operations, according to the two parties.
Shift4's Marketplace is part of the company's Lighthouse Business Management System, an online control panel, debuted in August 2018, which provides customers with reporting capabilities, remote system management, customer engagement, and tools to manage their social media status. Going forward, the Shift4 Marketplace will offer additional third-party solutions (e.g., reservations, employee scheduling, loyalty/marketing, payroll, accounting, web development). A single integration connects app developers to over 100,000 merchants with the Lighthouse Business Management System.
"Our best-in-class secure payments platform serves as the foundation for an entire merchant ecosystem," relayed Jared Isaacman, CEO at Shift4 Payments. "In addition to payment processing services, it delivers seamless integration with leading POS systems and software, powerful business management tools, and access to a wide array of third-party services through our marketplace. DoorDash is one of the leading third-party services, so this integration brings substantial value to our restaurant customers." At present, DoorDash serves 4,000 cities across the U.S. and Canada.
An App Marketplace Debuted by Shift4 Payments
Auto-Star Compusystems (Medicine Hat, AB, Canada) has displayed its new Star-Plus Self-Checkout. It fills the need in the market for independent retailers who want to offer their customers self-checkout capability without renovating their store and spending thousands of dollars, according to Auto-Star Compusystems. In addition to the full extension of its flagship retail management system, Star-Plus, Auto-Star has integrated touchscreens from Elo (Milpitas, CA), printers from Epson America (Long Beach, CA), and barcode scanners from Datalogic (Eugene, OR). "Following a successful roll-out in a large Canadian pharmacy chain, we are excited to launch the Star-Plus Self-Checkout," declared Josh Wintoniak, Sales Manager at Auto-Star Compusystems. "Supported by our industry leading 'You First' Partner Program for resellers, we are confident this will be another successful solution by Auto-Star." A longtime ISV in POS, Auto-Star Compusystems focuses on grocery, health, and pharmacy.
Ingenico Gets EDGE-y for Partners
A new marketing platform for partners has been formed by payments player, Ingenico Group, entitled Marketing EDGE. It features syndicated social media posts, supplemental marketing collateral, and ready-to-deploy marketing campaigns. No previous marketing training or expertise is required, emphasized Ingenico. In addition, partners may use the platform, and its full suite of analytics, to easily track results.
"Ingenico values the success of our partners and understands the importance of providing the tools necessary to connect and engage with their audiences," indicated Bradford Giles, SVP of Marketing and Sales Enablement at Ingenico North America (Alpharetta, GA). "Through Marketing EDGE, partners gain access to a toolkit of marketing resources to expand their reach and effectively communicate with the merchants they serve, regardless of their marketing expertise, resources, or budgets. We are excited to roll out this initiative and work with our partners as they benefit from this robust platform."
"Our goal is to support partners as they grow their business," continued Giles. "Ingenico has taken the time to develop thoughtful content that delivers on thought leadership, sales enablement strategies, and demand generation assets so partners employing the platform can focus on other aspects of growing their business rather than dedicating time and resources to marketing efforts." At the recent Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA) Show in San Antonio, TX, Ingenico demonstrated Marketing EDGE for VARs and ISVs in POS.
Bradford Giles, SVP of Marketing and Sales Enablement, Ingenico
MagTek Spins iDynamo 6
MagTek (Seal Beach, CA) has showcased its new, versatile mobile card reader, dubbed iDynamo 6. With support for iOS, Android, and Windows O/S, iDynamo 6 accepts MSR, EMV Chip/Contactless, and NFC. Also, it offers four separate connection options, including Lightning, USB Type C (Male), USB Type C (Female), and Micro USB.
In small form factor of 2.7 in. (L) x 2 in. (W) x 0.7 in. (D), iDynamo 6 has an optional battery pack (400-mAh Lithium Polymer) in addition to its universal mounting system of suction cup and stabilizing bracket. If contactless transactions are not required, you can use the iDynamo 6 without the battery pack, and the device runs on the power of its host device. An operating temperature range of 32 to 113 Degrees F (0 to 45 Degrees C) facilitates mobile payments in various field environments.
"As the mobile landscape broadens and opportunities to accept payments increase, solution providers need a card reader they can easily integrate into their applications," recommended John Arato, VP and GM of Retail Solutions for MagTek. "iDynamo 6 is designed to satisfy that requirement, with affordability, flexibility, and security." It runs the MagnaSafe Security Architecture--with encryption, tokenization, real-time authentication, and dynamic payment card data--by MagTek.
MagTek's iDynamo 6 Mobile Card Reader
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Elo at Play (Google)
Elo (Milpitas, CA) has received certification by Google for its new 3.0 generation of Android-based products. It includes the popular I-Series, PayPoint, PayPoint Plus, and Backpack. As such, it brings access to the latest Google Mobile Services, including Google Chrome, YouTube, Play Store, as well as Google Play Services' WebView, Firebase Messaging, and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). In addition, Elo's Android solutions, including the new 3.0 products, all come ready for deployment and network management by "EloView," running Android 8 on Qualcomm's Snapdragon Octa-Core CPU.
"We saw a need from our customers invested in the Google ecosystem to have access to these features," reflected Craig Witsoe, CEO of Elo. "This certification enables businesses to utilize the standardization and integration capabilities of Google Managed Services to optimize solutions in their physical locations. Thanks to our strong partnership with Google, our customers can now choose Google Play Services for the full range of interactive products for virtually any use case."
Available in 10", 15", and 22" sizes, Elo's I-Series 3.0 for Android can be configured with any combination of peripherals in "Elo Edge Connect." As All-in-One POS, Elo's PayPoint 3.0 for Android and PayPoint Plus 3.0 for Android include touchscreen, cash drawer, thermal printer, and barcode scanner. A computer engine, Elo's Backpack 3.0 for Android enables the company's touchscreen monitors, open-frame displays, and digital signage to run audio and video content, interactive HTML webpages, and apps with Android.
Google Certification for Elo's 3.0 Android Solutions
Qu Flips the Burgers
Qu (Bethesda, MD) will deploy its software for POS for Back Yard Burgers (Nashville, TN). As the replacement for legacy systems, Qu will first roll out across 28 locations. After successfully retrofitting the corporate stores in 2019, Qu will be offered to franchisees of Back Yard Burgers in 2020. In all, Back Yard Burgers has 50 locations in the Southeast U.S. (As readers may recall, Qu was formerly Gusto POS.)
Driven by the upcoming launch of its new prototype and recent capital investment, Back Yard Burgers needs the faster ordering speeds for QSR. Its first priority will be to integrate omnichannels of web, mobile, and kiosks, reportedly. Back Yard Burgers also has selected Synergy Suite (Lehi, UT) for back-office functions such as inventory control and payroll, which Qu will link to directly, according to the participants.
"We evaluated multiple enterprise POS platforms during the selection process conducted by ConStrata Technology Solutions (Potomac, MD), but Qu stood out for its open integrations, conversational ordering interface, and optional hardware choices, as well as the team's strong vision for the future of restaurant technology," recounted Scott Shotter, CEO of Back Yard Burgers. ". . . One source of truth, as well as a built-in 'data scientist' to give us predictive data points. That's the North Star we are aiming for with Qu by our side."
Back Yard Burgers Deploys Qu POS Software
Channel FactoidWhat Apocalypse?
-More than five retail chains (+5.2) are opening stores for every retailer that is closing stores in 2019, according to new research from the IHL Group. This is up from +3.7 in 2018.
-Overall, the number of retail chains adding stores in 2019 has increased 56%, while the number of closing stores has decreased by 66% in the past year.
-In 2018, 20 retail chains represented 52% of all stores closed. In 2019, the 20 announcing the most closures represent 75% of all closures.
-Since 2017, apparel and department store chains have seen the net closure of 9,651 stores. During this same period, all other segments represented 18,226 net new openings. A gain of 8,575.
-As totals: 64% of retailers are increasing the number of stores in 2019, 12% are decreasing, and 24% report no change in store counts. This compares to 2018 with 41% increasing store counts, 37% decreasing, and 22% with no change.
-Here's ratio of chains opening stores, versus chains closing stores, by segment: Food, Drug, Convenience, Mass Merchants +9.5; Apparel, Hard Goods, Department Stores +3.7; Restaurants, Fast Food, Table Service +6.3.
-In its research, the IHL Group reviewed 1,660 retail chains with 50 or more locations in the U.S. across nine industry segments. For each retailer, the company measured the total store counts at the end of 2016, 2017, 2018, and year-end plans for 2019.
-"U.S. retail has increased $565 billion in sales since January of 2017, fed not just by online sales growth but net store sales growth," summarized Lee Holman, VP of Research for the IHL Group. "Clearly there is significant pressure in apparel and department stores, however, in every single retail segment there are more chains that are expanding their number of stores than closing stores."
Source:"Retail Renaissance - True Story of Store Openings/Closings" by the IHL Group (Franklin, TN).
An Increase in Stores, Says IHL Group
Linda Takes the Prize
A kudos for Linda Sudderth, North American Sales Manager, Business Systems, at Epson America, who has been chosen as the Women to Women (W2W) Leader of the Year by the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA). Announced at the recent RSPA Show in San Antonio, TX, the W2W Leader of the Year Award recognizes female pacesetters in retail IT. With responsibility for the OEM, VAR, and ISV Channels, Sudderth joined Epson America (Long Beach, CA) in 1997.
"We are very proud to be associated with Linda and benefit from her insight and professional approach," cited John Kirk, President and CEO of RSPA (Charlotte, NC). "Linda and the Epson team positively impact our community every day. Her stellar track record, strategic vision, and mentorship, as well as her great enthusiasm and passion for people and the industry, all contributed to her win."
"RSPA is a very influential organization and plays an important role in enabling businesses to take it to the next level," contributed Sudderth. "I am particularly pleased with the creation of the W2W Committee as it provides the perfect opportunity to bring together women integral to retail technology and POS, and, further, sets the tone to help them reshape the industry. I am honored to have been nominated by my peers and to receive this prestigious award."
Linda Sudderth, of Epson America, Named W2W Leader of the Year by Members of the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA)
Now Appearing: Chad & Jeremy
Custom Business Solutions (Irvine, CA) has engaged Chad Waite as its new Pre-Sales Engineer and Account Manager. With 17 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Waite most recently served as West Coast National Sales Executive for HotSchedules (2018-2019). Other roles have included National Sales Manager for QSR Automations (2013 to 2018), Senior Solution Sales Executive for Radiant Systems (2008 to 2010), and Senior System Sales Executive for Jadeon (2006 to 2007).
"For me, the decision to join Custom Business Solutions was simple, having known Art and Jeremy Julian for many years, and knowing their reputation and name in the POS industry," enthused Waite. "Their experience and trusted relationships in the industry provides the foundation for longevity, and the close family environment adds that unique touch in providing stellar customer service and true partnerships. I am grateful and excited to contribute to the ongoing success of this organization."
"Hiring someone like Chad is only going to help improve our client relationships and drive the growth of our product offerings to serve even more clients," related Jeremy Julian, COO of Custom Business Solutions. (Art Julian is CEO.) A reseller for more than two decades (of POSitouch), Custom Business Solutions offers its flagship restaurant software, NorthStar. It features an omnichannel touchpoint capability.
Chad Waite, Pre-Sales Engineer and Account Manager, Custom Business Solutions
Barcoding, Inc.: O Canada
Barcoding, Inc. (Baltimore, MD) has hired Bertrand Martelle as its Country Manager for Canada. As such, he will oversee the company's offices in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver. His resume includes roles as VP of Sales for OCR Canada/QSG (2011 to 2019), VP of Sales and Marketing for the CIS Group (2009 to 2011), Canadian Country Manager for Psion Teklogix (2005 to 2009), and Eastern Canadian Sales Manager for Intermec (1990 to 2005).
"Bertrand Martelle has joined Barcoding at a time of significant growth in critical new markets and new technical offerings," espoused Shane Snyder, President of Barcoding, Inc. "His extensive experience in the industry and intimate knowledge of the Canadian market and culture will allow us to provide an unparalleled level of expertise to our customers while growing new business and expanding our horizons."
"Barcoding, Inc. is a well-established leader in the data capture industry, so I was humbled to have the opportunity to lead its growth into the Canadian marketplace," commented Martelle. "There is a market need for a Canadian organization to help companies improve their supply chain performance, and it's a challenge my growing team is eager to help support." Barcoding, Inc. is searching for additional local talent in Canada.
Bertrand Martelle, Country Manager, Canada, Barcoding, Inc.
An ETA for Jodie
As its new CEO, the Electronic Transactions Association (Washington, DC) has crowned Jodie Kelley. Currently SVP and General Counsel of BSA, The Software Alliance (2009 to 2019), Kelley will assume her new role as CEO of ETA in September. Prior to BSA, The Software Alliance, she served as VP and Deputy General Counsel of Fannie May (2003 to 2009), and Partner at law firm, Jenner & Block (1992 to 2003).
"Our board and I are thrilled to announce an exceptional new CEO to lead and grow ETA as we approach our 30th Anniversary next year," shared Kevin Jones, President and Chairman of ETA and CEO of Celero Commerce (Nashville, TN). "The payments technology industry is dynamic and expanding, and ETA has a vital role to play during this period of growth and innovation. Jodie is the right person to guide ETA to significant growth that provides enhanced value and unified voice for our industry."
"I am extremely gratified to join the Electronic Transactions Association," relayed Kelley. "As the payments technology industry grows in both size and importance, ETA must grow along with it. I am committed to further expanding ETA's already significant advocacy efforts, increasing our member-education programs and providing more networking opportunities. The payments technology industry is dynamic and so is its trade association. I am eager to work with ETA's talented staff to advance the goals of this important industry."
Jodie Kelley, CEO, Electronic Transactions Association
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