As tablet POS grows, where are the opportunities?

Many small and medium retailers are looking to migrate from traditional Point of Sale (POS) to cloud-based and tablet POS. Why? And what are the opportunities? 

Cloud-enabled ‘as-a-Service’ models have shaken up many sectors, disrupting the traditional way of doing things and establishing a new benchmark of low setup costs and convenient subscription pricing. The latest area of technology to get this treatment is Point of Sale (POS) solutions.

‘The hottest trend’

Forbes recently described cloud POS as ‘one of the hottest trends in POS software’. And according to Hospitality Technology’s 2018 point of sale (POS) Software Trends Report (registration required), 61% of merchants said they want their next POS system to be cloud-based1. This could signal a significant change for POS providers. And, as we’ve learned from various as-a-Service offerings, changes at one end of the market trigger new opportunities in some less obvious places. 

Cloud POS vs traditional POS

Cloud POS looks like good news for retailers and hospitality businesses. It does away with a lot of the inconveniences of traditional POS systems. For example, it eliminates the need for an on-premises POS server. Instead, data is securely held in the cloud, making it accessible from anywhere. No need for the business manager to be on-site to log in. And with no server, there are no more costly engineer visits to maintain and upgrade the system. Updates are pushed live regularly by the provider, so the system is kept up to date and secure.

By using tablet POS, businesses can also do away with traditional POS terminals. Cloud-based solutions have a front-end POS interface that’s created for use on internet-enabled devices including tablets, smartphones and touchscreen monitors. Many businesses already use tablets for multiple tasks, so using them as a POS device and avoiding the cost of a separate POS terminal is another useful saving.

Tablet POS can also enhance the customer experience. Staff have instant access to inventory and product information, and can complete the transaction on the same device. Many restaurants are using tablet POS as it boosts the efficiency of operations and improves interactions with customers. So, it’s easy to see the advantages over a traditional terminal and why tablet POS usage is on the rise.

This is backed up by forecasts for how cloud-based POS is set to grow. The global cloud POS market was valued at US$ 4.95 Bn in 2018 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 21.6% during the forecast period 2019-2027, and reach US$ 27.82 Bn in 20272.

From software to hardware opportunity

With the surge of businesses planning a move to cloud-based POS solutions and tablet POS, it follows that key hardware such as receipt printers will also need to be replaced to complete these new solutions. At the forefront of product innovation in tablet POS printer solutions and accessories is Star – a global manufacturer of POS hardware.

Tablet POS printers that redefine what’s possible

Bringing sophistication and some surprising abilities to the counter, two of Star’s latest receipt printers are perfect for tablet POS – the mC-Print2™ and mC-Print3™. They are super-compact, with high print quality and unique decurl function for perfectly flat receipts, barcodes and graphics. They work with Android, Windows or Apple devices and have a price point that makes them affordable for small and medium businesses. Not only do these sleek, cube-shaped printers look the part, they also have an IPX2 splash-proof rating, ideal for demanding hospitality environments, like restaurants and bars, as well as any retail environment.

Effortless connectivity for cloud or traditional POS

The mC-Print series provides multiple interfaces for effortless connectivity. Ethernet LAN, USB, iOS USB, Bluetooth, Cloud and two host USB ports ensure the mC-Print series gives you all the options you need. It also makes these printers a sensible investment for businesses currently running traditional POS but with ambitions to migrate to cloud POS in the future. Hub functionality, with a single power source, also makes it effortless to create a fully-fledged POS station. Simply attach a USB scanner, customer display, cash drawers and a kitchen buzzer to the printer and you have a complete solution.

Print from anywhere

And, as you’d expect from a solution built for cloud-based POS, Star CloudPRNT ™delivers intelligent printing from a web server on any network to a Star printer anywhere in the world, without the need for a local POS terminal. This enables unparalleled flexibility for remote receipt and order printing using a standard receipt printer.

A printer that promotes your business

But Star’s solution doesn’t stop there. The mC-Print2 and mC-Print3 are also loaded with Star Cloud Services. This transforms the receipt printer into a cloud-connected device, opening up new opportunities for retailers to engage with and activate customers. This includes Star’s Digital Receipting Service with AllReceipts™ customer app which makes it simple to send customers a digital receipt without asking for their email address. This is a clever stepping-stone that enables retailers to send instant customer satisfaction surveys as well as promotional messages through Star’s Engage NOW feature. This means a receipt printer suddenly opens up the potential for increasing sales and boosting customer loyalty. And that’s quite remarkable.

To find out more about Star tablet POS printers and Ingram Micro’s services, get in touch with us on 0371 973 3000 or email dcpos-uk@ingrammicro.com

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SOURCES

1 https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2018/05/25/what-is-cloud-point-of-sale-and-how-is-it-different-from-traditional-pos/#594ee8b81180

2 https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190522005373/en/27-Billion-Cloud-POS-Market-2027-Global

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