Apple stores finally begin upgrading from Windows CE-based to iPod touch checkout systems

“Multiple sources have noted that Apple will be transitioning its retail store EasyPay handheld checkout systems from Windows-based PDA devices to iPod touch hardware for the 2009 holiday season,” Prince McLean reports for AppleInsider. “Tipsters have all confirmed that Apple is already in the final stages of rolling out new EasyPay terminals based on the iPod touch combined with a credit card reader and barcode scanner.”

“One reader reported that the new devices are already being used to ring up sales at Apple’s Valley Fair Mall store in Santa Clara, California, the closest retail outlet to the company’s corporate headquarters in Cupertino,” McLean reports. “‘These things look really cool, much smaller than the Windows-based ones and faster too. They seem to be running a trial at that store, Palo [Alto] did not have them,’ the reader said.”

McLean reports, “Developing a custom solution based on the iPhone would have been an expensive project just to create a dozen or two devices for each of the company’s 225 retail stores. However, with the move to iPhone 3.0 and third party support for point of sale software and devices, there’s now little reason for Apple to stick with its slow, problematic Windows CE devices, which retail employees reported little satisfaction in using.”

McLean reports, “Like other Windows Mobile/Pocket PC devices, the EasyPay systems require a stylus to operate, they look clunky, and they’re susceptible to crashing or losing WiFi connectivity, all of which impact Apple’s ability to do business in a professional manner. Problems with EasyPay systems were blamed for helping to create long lines at the launch of the iPhone 3G last year.”

Read more in the full article here.

37 Comments

  1. It was just the matter of time. Once hardware APIs were open, it became much easier to build an attachable portable barcode scanner / credit card reader / thermal printer. I’m sure the same hardware company that had been building WinCE solutions has just re-worked their hardware to connect via dock connector, and software should have been easy to whip up (or port).

    Hopefully, others will follow, once they see the reliability and coolness of these devices.

  2. “I’m sure the same hardware company that had been building WinCE solutions has just re-worked their hardware to connect via dock connector, and software should have been easy to whip up (or port).”

    Um. No. Eww.

    This must be a total custom re-write designed for mobile OS X. Even the hardware I doubt is Symbol anymore. We’ll see soon. We’ll soon see. Whichever. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  3. > iPod touch? barcode scanner? I thought that required a camera.

    There is probably some device designed for scanning bar codes and swiping credit cards attached to the Dock connector.

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