February 5, 2014
Amazon plans to offer brick-and-mortar retailers a new checkout system using its Kindle tablets, expected to be available as early as this summer. The development stems from Amazon’s acquisition last year of certain tech and engineers from GoPago, a startup known for its cloud-based mobile payment platform. The move could provide Amazon with a significant growth opportunity. However, it also faces numerous competitors in the checkout system space.
Traditional checkout systems from companies such as VeriFone Systems and NCR are currently leading the industry while startups are beginning to gain more traction. Square is the most successful, with its credit card reader that syncs with smartphones and tablets. PayPal is also looking for ways to bring its online payment system to physical retail stores.
“Because many of the largest physical retailers have extensive, complicated checkout systems that may be difficult or costly to give up, Amazon is likely to focus on smaller retailers,” reports The Wall Street Journal.
“In one scenario, the Seattle company would give merchants Kindle tablets and credit card readers,” explained people briefed on the company’s plans, as noted by WSJ. “Amazon also might offer retailers other services, such as website development and data analysis, the people said.”
Amazon may have an advantage because it already holds 230 million users’ credit card information, and is planning on offering small businesses discounts or promotions through Amazon’s website.