First Data introduces the reinvented credit card machine. The Clover Mini, designed as a POS system, but in the size of a credit card terminal.
With fierce competition in the payments industry First Data needed to break away from the crowded marketplace. In doing so, they have reinvented the credit card terminal and created a marketplace of their own. First with the Clover Station, a cloud based point of sale system which is based on the Android operating system. For about the same price of a traditional credit card machine merchants can now get a complete POS system and cash register. It’s MarketPlace is an open source app store, where merchants can find and download apps designed for their businesses.
First Data has been known as the largest credit card processor on the planet. First Data is now moving strategy into being a technology company. They want to lead in technology products and solutions and not just processing payments.
Recently they have launched their latest tablet-based system: the Clover Mini. The Clover Mini is a small point-of-sale system that will accept NFC-based payments from mobile wallets like Apple Pay, Android Pay, and even Samsung Pay. It also has a card slot for EMV chip and PIN credit cards. The tablet-sized terminal has a PIN pad, several USB ports, and Wi-Fi capabilities, as well as an input for an Ethernet cable. The Mobile Mini rounds out Clover’s suite of products geared at small, medium, and large businesses, which include a mobile unit for in-the-field sales and a counter-style point-of-sale. Clover Mini is being targeted at small businesses with a smaller budget.
For about the same cost of a traditional credit card machine, merchants will now be able to purchase a pos system the size of a tablet instead of buying what feels like a brick. Clover Mini that allows you to install apps designed just for your business though the Clover Marketplace.
When CEO Guy Chiarello joined First Data in 2013, he knew things needed to change.“The company lost its way, and other players got into the marketplace. First Data had recently acquired Clover, a mobile payments app that allowed users to quickly check out. After the acquisition it pivoted it into a sleek white terminal complete with an app store, so merchants could tailor their own experience.Point-of-sale terminals are no longer just about a simple transaction, they’re about being the entire backend of a business.
How much does it cost?
First Data has a network of banks ISO’s and agents that sell units on its behalf and the price can fluctuate, but prices will be in the $300 range. Even at that price, which is far below what First Data terminals ordinarily sell for.
While it may be hard times for payment terminal providers, this burst of innovation around mobile payments means that more and more merchants are likely to accept mobile payments. After all, even as competitors continue to encroach on its space, First Data still boasts six million customers worldwide. If the company is able to upgrade those customers from the old payment terminals to a new Apple Pay-enabled POS, it would be a major boost to the overall mobile payments space.As Apple Pay and Android Pay-accepting terminals become more ubiquitous, the more likely people are to use them.