If you've ever been in Apple's own retail stores, you may have noticed the use of iPod Touch and iPad devices for use as queue expediting, store floor PoS transactions and information lookup -- and that's about the limit and extent that we've seen iOS being used for retail applications in public.
But now a new company, Revel Systems, based out of Northern California, has introduced a Point-of-Sale solution that combines the portability and flexibility and ease-of-use of the the iPad with Cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS) for restaurant and retail applications.
Revel has designed three separate products around the iPad for Point-of-Sale. The first is a mobile credit card swipe plus PoS software that can be used by small vendors in street/mall kiosks and farmers markets and trade shows, or even by flight attendants on aircraft.
The second product, Revel Quick Service, includes the PoS software and credit card swipe with an integrated cash register and printer for Quick Service Restaurants (QSR's). This is currently being used in production by Lappert's at their 817 Broadway, Sausalito, CA Fish and Chips restaurant location.
The third product, Revel Table Service, allows multiple iPads running the PoS system to be detached from the cash register by table servers and used in larger restaurant settings, and includes full reporting capabilities, such as for time cards, gift cards, employee analytics, inventory management and customer relationship management.
Since the back-end of Revel iPad PoS system is implemented as SaaS and is cloud-based, there's no need for an on-premises server running the usual required databases and transaction reporting for a typical PoS. All that's needed is an Internet connection.
Revel Systems' iPad solution can conduct transactions over a Wi-Fi connection or via 3G, and credit card information is not stored on the units, making for a secure solution. Revel's iPad-based registers are also much smaller than their PC counterparts, allowing for greater flexibility in tight restaurant locations.
According to Revel, their iPad/SaaS solution also costs about half of what a typical single-register PoS solution sells for as well.
Have you seen iPads being deployed in other retail and vertical solutions? Talk Back and Let Me Know.