updated 04:20 pm EST, Tue November 3, 2009
Company eliminating Windows CE-based portables
Apple is reportedly developing a new checkout system based on the iPod touch, according to an ifoAppleStore report posted on AppleInsider. The "EasyPay touch" configuration consists of an iPod case integrating a barcode scanner, additional battery cells and a magnetic stripe reader. The hardware is paired with custom point-of-sale (POS) software.
The touchscreen interface can be used by Apple employees to process payments made with credit cards or cash. Credit signatures are entered using a Pogo Sketch stylus. Customers can also make returns without requiring a standard POS machine.
Debit transactions will be completed using a combination of the Touch system and the Hypercom terminal. The terminal serves as an entry pad for PIN numbers, while the rest of the process can be completed from the iPod. The standard POS system will still be used for payments made with multiple credit cards or checks, and while returning products for cash.
The EasyPay scanner allegedly reduces the time associated with iPhone purchases, as each of the four codes on the cellphone box can be scanned and automatically added to the data fields in the order. Apple staff can then configure details of the cellular plan without leaving the iPod interface.
The iPod-based system is said to serve as a replacement for the current Windows CE-based portable computers that have been utilized for several years. Even with the scanner case, the Touch unit is expected to be a fraction of the weight and size of the Samsung devices used in Microsoft's new retail stores.