Smartphone credit-card reader expands transaction options

Summary:NetSecure's Kudos payment kit retails for less than $100; transactions cost the merchant 2.7 percent plus 20 cents per transaction.

It never ceases to amaze me when small-business owners who have taken the time to travel to some sort of off-site event -- like a craft fair or a trade show where they might be able to sell their wares -- have limited payment options available to make it easy for impulsive would-be customers to buy their wares.

Enter a new generation of gadgets that allow people to use their credit-card in conjunction with a smartphone or handheld device. The latest one to come to my attention is the Kudos credit-card acceptance kit from NetSecure Payments.

Kudos caters to small-business merchants that would like to add credit cards as a payment option. It actually doesn't really matter whether or not the transaction takes place inside their store location or off site. They fact is that many smaller companies don't have the wherewithal to invest in special terminals. This technology gets around that by working with a smartphone and offering merchant accounts that charge a flat rate of 2.7 percent plus 20 cents per transaction, with no other ongoing charges.

Said NetSecure Payments President and founder Daniel McCann:

"Terminals and merchant accounts are cost-prohibitive for small and micro businesses. Small merchants like electricians, taxi drivers, home-based businesses, and even Girl Scouts need the flexibility to accept all forms of payment."

The Kudos payment kit can be bought directly for $99.99; however, Office Depot is offering the technology at a price of $79.99 at its U.S. locations and on its Web site.

The technology works with desktop systems, notebook computers, tablet computers and smartphone platforms including those running Apple iOS, Google Android or Blackberry.

Topics: Banking, Enterprise Software, Mobility


Heather Clancy is an award-winning business journalist specializing in transformative technology and innovation. Her articles have appeared in Entrepreneur, Fortune Small Business, The International Herald Tribune and The New York Times. In a past corporate life, Heather was editor of Computer Reseller News. She started her journalism lif... Full Bio

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