About Wireless Credit Card Terminals

By Sabah Karimi

  • Overview

    All businesses that accept credit cards can handle the transaction using a credit card swipe machine or other processing terminal that transmits the data instantly to the credit card company. A wireless credit card terminal is connected to a web-based processing management system so that the entire process can be completed electronically. These terminals can be used by retailers, restaurants, gas station attendants and other business entities to make credit card processing more efficient.
  • Function

    Wireless credit card terminals are designed to process cards electronically using a GPRS or GSM network that connects to a web-based transaction interface. These terminals are lightweight and portable, and allow the merchant to process the credit card payment within seconds. Wireless credit card processing units can be used as a front end processor to connect to a credit card processing center within seconds, or be connected to a web-enabled PC or console to serve as a mobile credit card swipe machine.
  • Features

    Most wireless credit card terminals are equipped with a magnetic card reader for easy swiping, a large back-lit display, a programmable key pad, a built-in wireless card or Smart Card interface and rechargeable batteries. Some wireless credit card terminals are equipped with a receipt printer, while others will transmit the data to a printing device that may be configured onto the network. These devices are very lightweight and compact in design, making them well-suited for travel.

  • Types

    Many wireless credit card terminals look like standard counter-based terminals, except they are equipped with a wireless card to connect to the Internet. Others are designed to be clipped onto a cellular phone to pick up signals from the cellular data network. Some of the most widely used wireless credit card terminals include the Nurit 8020 wireless terminal; the MobileSwipe system that accepts credit cards with a Nextel cellular phone; the Way Systems MTT Wireless Terminal that connects to the nearest GSM/GPRS network; and the AirSwipe from Aircharge, that offers wireless credit card processing through a JavaME enabled cellular phone.
  • Benefits

    Companies that need to offer credit card payment services during a trade show, or via sales people who are roaming or traveling, can benefit from the convenience of wireless credit card terminals. Wireless credit card terminals are also valuable for servers at large restaurants who want to process a check without having to use a point of sale register. Wireless credit card terminals make the entire process of completing a credit card transaction easy and efficient, while keeping the credit card data safe and secure.
  • Considerations

    Using a wireless credit card processing unit instead of one that is attached to a point of sale register or terminal can save some companies time and money in business expense over the long-term. Since the entire transaction is processed over the web, there may not be a need to install a second or third phone line. Companies can also save money on the cost of maintaining and installing credit card equipment at a trade show booth or business sales events.
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