The adoption of mobile devices for POS transactions is exploding worldwide as retailers and consumers alike get more accustomed to retailers asking for payment on mobile devices. According to IHL Group, a Franklin, Tennessee-based retail market resea rch firm, growth of new mobile POS device shipments is expected to be over 95% worldwide and will surpass 108% growth in North America in 2014.
“The move to mobile POS in certain segments is radically changing the face of retail and hospitality, particularly mall-based retailers,” says Greg Buzek, president of IHL Group. “The number of devices used by department stores, apparel and shoe stores in particular will nearly triple this year.”
Mobile POS began as a smaller retailer phenomenon in widespread adoption but has quickly been adopted by large enterprise organisations according to IHL. In addition, the impact on traditional POS installs locations varies widely by retail segment – greater in the markets that sell clothing and less in those markets with high volume consumer goods.
“Apple had first mover advantage particularly when Square provided an easy to use credit card reader that would work with any iPhone or iPad,” adds Buzek. “But the larger enterprises predominantly use Windows for the POS and thus Microsoft Windows 8 and also more ruggedized devices have a much greater opportunity against Apple as the devices are adopted across hundreds or thousands of stores and must integrate with existing systems.”
According to IHL’s Mobile POS Vendor Database, 47% of total mobile POS shipments in 2013 worldwide were iOS devices, with Android at 33% and Windows 8 at 12%. The differences are in growth rates. iOS is expected to grow slower than the overall market for 2014 (due to tough comparisons), while Android (+104.6%) and Windows 8 (128.4%) are expected to grow at a much higher rate worldwide. Further, in North America, Windows 8 devices are projected to grow 183.9%.