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iPad POS Software Reviews

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  • ShopKeep Review

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    Highlights: Simple, reasonable pricing Great for small businesses Intuitive design User-friendly Robust back-office features Highly functional register Raw ingredient tracking MailChimp integration Excellent customer service Overview: ShopKeep is a simple, elegant piece of software. It is aimed squarely at small businesses and has carved out a space catering to food and beverage sellers. That said, […]

  • Vend Review

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    Overview In 2010, Vend was revolutionary; it was a powerful POS system operating completely in the cloud, making it possible for your business to still function through an internet outage. Since then, Vend has stayed on top of current trends and remains one of the most user-friendly systems on the market. Vend is constantly updating its […]

  • Lavu Review

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    Overview: Imagine you’ve started a new company. You’ve created what you think is a killer product and you’re ready to launch, but you haven’t settled on a name yet. There are all kinds of things to consider: it should sound pleasant and be easy to remember; if it’s a recognizable word, it needs to evoke […]

  • Hike POS Review

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    Looking for a terrific, innovative POS system to help run your business? Check out our review of HIke POS to see what they can provide.

  • Ring It Up Review

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    Overview: Despite its incredibly low price, Ring It Up is a powerful, versatile, and mobile point of sale that can be an invaluable resource for virtually any type of small business. Ideal for trade shows, flea markets, craft shows, and festivals, Ring It Up is primarily marketed for merchants who take their businesses on the […]

  • LivePOS Review

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    Overview: Self-proclaimed the “cloud point of sale system for Chains and Franchises,” LivePOS is a system designed for the retail industry. Back in 2006, LivePOS became the first software company to ever release a cloud-based point of sale system. Even though the POS market has become inundated with cloud providers in recent years, LivePOS has […]

  • ERPLY Review

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    Overview: Do you know what holds the title of unlikeliest locale for the future of software development? The correct answer is Estonia, a small European nation whose official language doesn’t even have a future tense. Skype was Estonia’s first major export, and venture capitalist/ERPLY board member Saul Klein believes that “ERPLY can do for business software what Skype did for […]

  • NCR Silver Review

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    Overview: NCR Silver is a cloud-based iPad POS system made by the first point-of-sale company in the world, 130-years-old electronics giant NCR Corporation. This software sets itself apart in a handful of ways and should be a serious consideration for small to medium-size business owners. For some, the sheer size of NCR might be enough […]

  • iConnect Review

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    Overview: iConnect has only been around since 2011, but founder Subodh Gupta is already planning for a future retail environment that looks nothing like what we’ve seen so far. iConnect can’t sell you anything in an augmented reality just yet, but it does have some interesting features I haven’t come across in most point of […]

  • SalesVu Review

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    Overview: Nestled in the tech-hub of Austin, TX, SalesVu is a cloud-based, all-inclusive POS interface and payment processing package with an ambitious reach; in fact, it is intended to work as a successful POS regardless of whether you’re selling hamburgers, books, or cleaning services. SalesVu’s strength is in its broad flexibility. More than just a […]

Overview of iPad Based POS Systems

When the server arrives at the table of your favorite restaurant, she’s carrying an iPad instead of a pen and pad. As the members of your party place their orders, she navigates the touchscreen and sends the order directly to the kitchen from right there at your table. You notice the efficiency of the process and resume conversation with your colleagues.

When it comes time to settle the tab, you hand the server your credit card. Instead of walking away or saying that she’ll be “right back with your receipt”, she completes the entire transaction on the iPad and asks you to sign the touchscreen. Then she offers to email the receipt to you. The entire process saved paper, time, and energy. (If you’ve ever waited tables, you know the value of saving steps whenever you can.)

Scenarios like these have led to the increased popularity of iPad based POS systems among all kinds of retailers. This article will discuss the pros and cons of such systems as well as the costs and hardware requirements necessary for implementation at your business.

Pros

  • Easy deployment. You only have to purchase an iPad and download an app.
  • Easy to use. Because touchscreens and iOS are so common, your employees’ learning curve will be minimal. Chances are they already know how to navigate an iPad.
  • Integrations with ancillary software. Most of these iPad based POS systems integrate with other software that works to support business marketing and operations. Such software includes loyalty software, accounting software, booking software, shopping cart software, shipping software, inventory software, and payroll. Older systems usually don’t have these types of integrations.
  • Lower maintenance. Since iPad based POS systems are based in the cloud, all of the updates happen there, too. You don’t have to worry about updating your onsite servers if you don’t use onsite servers.
  • Accessibility. Look over sales reports or inventory from anywhere there’s Internet access. Everything’s on the web so you don’t have to be at work to have the information.
  • Increased mobility. Like the server in the introduction, your employees can be where your customers are. Use the iPad POS at a food truck park or an auto repair shop, a hair salon or a trade show. You’re not tied down to the checkout counter. Anywhere can be the checkout counter.
  • Low upfront costs. For a single user situation, the costs involve an iPad and an app. Obviously, those costs increase when you have to buy more than one iPad.

Cons

  • No offline mode in some cases. While some vendors offer an offline mode, most rely on Internet connectivity to operate properly. So if the Internet is out, you’re out of luck. Of course, that’s the case with most business operations anyway. The Internet is second only to electricity when it comes to business essentials. If either gets knocked out, head to the golf course.
  • Security concerns. Because hackers use their genius for evil rather than good, there is always the risk that business, employee, and customer information can be breached. If it’s accessible to you anywhere there’s an Internet connection, it’s accessible to hackers, too. Many vendors work to encrypt information, but there is still a risk.
  • Monthly fees. You have to pay for the service just like you pay for other merchant services. Everybody’s trying to make money.

Costs

  • Low upfront costs. Depending on how many terminals you want and the hardware your business requires, you can start up for anywhere between $1,000 and $3,500.
  • Monthly fees. Fees vary from vendor to vendor accordingly to the features they offer.
  • Hardware costs. The more hardware you buy, the more it will cost. Think about what you’ll use consistently and what you won’t. The food service industry probably won’t need a barcode scanner.

Implementation and Deployment

  • Easy to deploy. In some cases all you have to do is download and install the app. In other cases, it’s all web-based and you just have to access the Internet.
  • Quick hardware setup. When you buy iPad compatible hardware, it’s just a matter of downloading the required software.

Hardware Requirements

  • To use an iPad POS, you need to have a tablet that is iOS compatible. That means an iPad, an iPad mini, or an iPad touch. These tablets cost anywhere from $200 to $500.
  • Stands and/or mounts. If you’re thinking, “I don’t need a stand. We can just carry the tablet or lay it on the counter,” think again. Stands and mounts protect the iPad from spills, drops, and other travesties that shatter screens or ruin devices.
  • Cash drawer. You want to have somewhere secure to keep cash. You can purchase a cash drawer for $100 to $300.
  • Receipt printer. Not everybody is forthright with their email address. Some people still want hard copies of everything. You can pay anywhere from $300 to $479 for an iPad compatible receipt printer.
  • Barcode scanner. If you plan to use barcodes to keep track of inventory or during purchase, you’ll want a barcode scanner. The camera on the iPad will suffice for infrequent use. Otherwise a scanner will cost you between $170 and $529.
  • Card reader. Most of the iPad POS software packages come with a credit card reader. For those that don’t, expect to shell out as little as $10 or as much as $100.
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