E-commerce giant Amazon has made its widely anticipated move into the burgeoning mPOS market by launching a dongle and app-based solution with a pricing strategy that undercuts rivals Square and PayPal.
Amazon Local Register consists of an app and a $10 card swipe reader that plugs into mobile phones and tablets. The system works with iOS devices, some Android handsets and Amazon’s own Fire hardware. Retailers that sign up by the end of October will pay 1.75% per swipe until the end of 2015, after which the price goes up to 2.5%, less than the 2.75% charged by Square and 2.7% charged by PayPal Here.
At the same time, Amazon is also developing its own wallet app to offer card-based mobile payments via mPOS. Speaking to PCM, Sascha Breite, head of future payments at SIX Payment Services, said: “An exact date for the launch of the mobile credit card reader in the US is not yet clear. And for small and medium-sized traders in particular, it could still be easier to accept card payments on site rather than use this new technology.
Due to Amazon’s existing global market penetration, it is expected that this new solution will be rolled out in other countries over the next year. Indeed, if this new product is able to take advantage of the current popularity that Square and other mobile payment providers are experiencing in the US, then Amazon’s expansion will be ever more likely.”