Payment firm Square has launched a new all-in-one payment terminal device it says makes credit and debit card payments fairer and more accessible for businesses.
The £199 Square Terminal combines a point of sale device with a payment machine which can accept all types of credit and debit card and contactless payments as well as print receipts or send them digitally.
The device uses a touchscreen and has built-in software which also enables business owners to view and manage previous transactions and manage inventory lists.
The US-based payments firm, co-founded by Twitter boss Jack Dorsey, says the new device has been designed to replace the current keypad-based payment terminals, which the company says can come with a range of extra fees and limited functionality beyond taking payment.
It said it believed it could benefit businesses of all sizes by placing all their payment-related tasks in a single, mobile unit.
“Many UK businesses today are using outdated keypad card terminals that come with unfair fees and long-term contracts,” Square’s head of hardware Jesse Dorogusker said.
“Designed to feel familiar but new, Square Terminal offers a modern solution with dynamic software, so businesses can do more than just take payments.
“Square Terminal is for sellers, often larger, who need a portable, all-in-one payment terminal that staff can use for point of sale, taking payments and receipts.”
Mr Dorogusker said that the device had to be designed in such a way that would allow businesses to “run their entire business from this”, explaining that as well as dealing with needs such as payments and invoicing, users can edit their inventory library – removing items or changing prices for example.
The company said the Terminal had a flat-rate 1.75% fee per in-person transaction made and 2.5% for those made over the phone, but would “never” ask businesses to pay additional fees such as those around set-up or account creation, monthly add-ons, contactless payment fees or refund and reward card fees.
“Only about half of the businesses in the UK accept credit cards today,” Mr Dorogusker said.
“And with this giant global trend from cash to cards, that’s still pretty tragic.”
He said it was more typical currently for business owners to be expected to sign a contract to get a device and then pay a number of other fees to keep using it, adding that “expanding card acceptance” was a founding principle of the company.
Earlier this year the company announced a scheme to provide refugee entrepreneurs with payment equipment to help them grow their small businesses.
At the time of that launch in London, Square chief executive Mr Dorsey said: “Enabling people to compete on a level playing field instead of being disadvantaged because they don’t have access to technology is our goal.
“We’re always looking for ways to build new technologies and increase the access for the number of people who can actually participate, but also enable them to grow their business in a way that is better than most big businesses have today.”