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Nedbank seems to be on a bit of a mobile and digital banking innovation streak at the moment. Friday 8 February marked the launch of PocketPOS, Africa and the Middle East’s first live EMV–certified mobile point of sale (POS) solution, specifically targeting small to medium-sized businesses.
PocketPOS™ uses ‘CHIP & PIN’ technology to process debit and credit card transactions via a smartphone connected to a secure card reader.
According to Sydney Gericke, Managing Executive of Nedbank Card and Payments people including “plumbers, electricians or delivery services” will find PocketPOS appealing, as it gives them the ability to minimise cash acceptance during sales of products and service transactions.
Nedbank claims that the tool could save merchants as much as up to 50% on their existing card acceptance costs.
In light of the high penetration of mobile internet-usage in Africa and the Middle East, Nedbank is clearly reacting to the practicalities of conducting business transactions in emerging markets.
PocketPOS comes in the form of two different secure card readers:
- A small device with a secure PIN pad that requires the merchant to capture an email address into a smartphone application and, on acceptance of the transaction amount, send a digital receipt to the captured email address
- An alternative device that provides the ability to print out a physical receipt, much like in the case of a traditional POS.
The ability to choose between a digital or physical receipt is a smart move on Nedbank’s part, recognising that not all companies are tech-savvy, and nor are all consumers comfortable with digital receipts.
Ingrid Johnson, Group Managing Executive of Nedbank Retail and Business Banking, stresses that the device caters to the needs of small to medium-sized businesses, affording them a way to receive payments that are ‘safe, convenient, mobile and cost-effective… as an alternative to cash.’
Both card readers utilize a secure number pad to accept PINs and use Bluetooth technology to connect to the smartphone. At the moment any iDevice running iOS6.0 or later can run the application, with Android 2.2/API Level 8 and BlackBerry® support on the way. Any further operating systems will be determined by client demand.
Businesses can purchase PocketPOS through a variety of bundles (that include the device), with the added flexibility to upgrade from one bundle to another should their transaction volume increase.
PocketPOS is initially available to a select group of existing Nedbank clients, but will be rolled out across the latter half of 2013, and eventually make its way into supported app stores. Anyone interested in PocketPOS can visit the SimplyBiz website for additional information and to log their contact details.