Posted: Fri 22nd Feb 2013
The device (left), aimed at businesses that have traditionally relied on payment by cash and cheque, will enable them to securely accept PayPal, debit and credit cards wherever they happen to be trading - whether that's on a market stall or in a shop, restaurant, taxi or even in a customer's home. Businesses will also be able to use the PayPal Here software to log cash and cheques and send invoices and receipts.
Unlike traditional chip and PIN devices, PayPal Here does not require a contract or ongoing fees. Instead, you simply buy the device upfront and then pay a small fee per transaction - in much the same way as you would when using PayPal online. The system will be available to select businesses before being fully launched in the UK in the summer.
PayPal describes its new chip and PIN device as a "game changer" for small businesses. "Cash and cheques have served us well over the years, but businesses that rely on them risk missing valuable sales," said PayPal UK's managing director Cameron McLean. "PayPal Here will let them offer their customers extra ways to pay, while saving them the hassle of taking cash and cheques to the bank. "The arrival of PayPal Here in Britain is the latest example of how we're helping UK businesses make the most of connected commerce: the new opportunities created by the merger of the online world and the high street." Greedy Goat ice cream, trading at London's Borough Market, is a PayPal Here UK launch partner. Owner Mark Thomas said: "Cash is king in the market, but people run out of cash very quickly and we often lose sales because customers can't face the long weekend wait at the ATM. PayPal Here is the perfect solution for us, as it gives our customers the chance to pay by card, backed by the reassurance of the PayPal name on the machine. It means more people will enjoy our goats' milk ice cream this year, which is great for our business."
Though PayPal swipe card devices have been available in the USA, the new device was created by a specialist team in London for markets where chip and PIN is standard. "At PayPal, we spend a huge amount of time talking and listening to small businesses," said PayPal president David Marcus. "We've used that feedback to create what we think is the best payment device ever created." Enterprise Nation founder Emma Jones agreed that the device would give small enterprises more options for making money. "One of the challenges small businesses in the UK face is getting paid," she said. "Cash and cheques seem easy, but soon people start to realise the lack of security, the inconvenience for customers and the Friday afternoon wait in at the bank to pay your money in. "Equally, many people are put off from signing up with a traditional card processing company because of the high fees, long-term contract commitments and bulky handsets. PayPal Here promises to change all that."
If you'd like to register your interest in using PayPal Here when it becomes freely available this summer, you can do so at www.paypal.co.uk/here.