Former Google Wallet head Osama Bedier is set to change the payments landscape again with his latest startup Poynt.
Poynt is launching a complete “point of sale” (POS) machine that works with every type of payment a customer could wish to use – NFC, chip and pin, swipe card and Bluetooth, to name a few.
In 2011, Bedier left a long career at PayPal to oversee the launch of Google Wallet. But by 2012, he was forced to admit defeat, as the service failed to reinvent point-of-sale purchases. Within another year, Bedier had left the company.
“Nobody today is delivering any solution that will get scale, including me,” he admitted at the time.
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Now that American retailers are obliged to supply EMV terminals before the end of 2015, as the US finally rolls out chip and pin cards, the time might just be right to change the terminal itself.
The payment terminal is still in the dark ages, Bedier says. No one payment terminal works with all payment services, and this disparity has led to the failure of every promising effort to revamp the way payments work, including Google Wallet.
While Apple Pay and CurrentC duke it out, and Google Wallet tries to clamber back onto the mobile payments bandwagon using Apple Pay’s media storm, the Poynt terminal will be ready for them all. Even cards, new and old, will be taken care of.
Poynt will support magnetic stripe, EMV, NFC (Apple Pay), QR code (Starbucks), and Beacon (Bluetooth, when the technology for this payment process finally arrives).
But rather than convincing consumers, Poynt has to convince banks it is worth the investment. Bedier says that talks are ongoing with the country’s largest banks, who have the distributing power to buy millions of Poynts and deliver them to retailers.
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