by Ty Hardison

Google launches Eddystone, an open-source Bluetooth LE beacon

Google is launching a new, open-source Bluetooth Low Energy beacon format.

The world of beacons has just gotten more convenient. Ars Technica reports that Google will now be launching a new, cross platform, open-source format for Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacons, called Eddystone. It was created to combat the problems in existing beacon services and unlike its predecessors, it is easily compatible with both iOS and Android devices.  

This new beacon technology will be able to support multiple frame types, which will perform a wide array of functions. Google stated that existing beacons can be tailored to fit the Eddystone format, which will mean that different beacon vendors will be able to use the same system for varying purposes. NFC World reports that Bluetooth beacons are one-way communications, where the goal is to provide a means … more

Government fees demand flexible payment option

Managing a city, town or county is no small task, particularly when it comes to collecting fees.

Managing a city, town or county is no small task, particularly when it comes to collecting fees. Residents may accrue traffic violations, parking tickets and other debts that penalize irresponsible conduct and help maintain the efficiency of the community's revenue cycle. This is to say nothing of taxes, license fees and other sources of revenue. Having the ability to collect on these payments effectively is critical to keeping the community's finances healthy. 

However, this is easier said than done in places where paper systems are still dominant. The long lines and red tape that many consider synonymous with government can make it challenging for administrators to manage the volume of payments they're due to receive. One of the best ways to accelerate the revenue cycle for a … more

With LoopPay, Samsung could take early lead in mobile payments

 Samsung stands to take what observers call an

One of the hurdles to implementation for mobile payment technology is the cost of adopting new physical systems compatible with methods like Apple Pay. Samsung stands to take what observers call an "early lead" on the marketplace due to its acquisition of LoopPay. 

"LoopPay developed a technology called Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) which will be integrated into new Samsung phones," reports John Heggesteun of Business Insider. "The technology will allow mobile users to pass their phones over a typical credit card reader to make a payment. In addition, Samsung Pay users will also be able to pay by presenting a barcode to be scanned at checkout."

This means that a higher number of merchants should be able to accept Samsung Pay payments sooner than its competitors, as the … more

Is your business ready for cloud POS?

Vantage can help you determine the optimal POS solution to meet your needs.

Whether you've just signed the lease on your first store or you are considering expanding to new locations, its worth taking the time to consider your current and future point-of-sale (POS) system needs now. In your market research, you have likely already stumbled upon how retailers and restaurants are moving away from bulky cash registers and replacing them with sleek tablet mobile payment systems. 

Thanks to advances in mobile devices and cloud technology, cash registers have become increasingly rare, and for good reason. A smartphone or tablet can provide the same functionality, in a more streamlined manner that improves the customer experience. Customers gain the option to have receipts emailed to them instead of printed, can clearly view … more

New York State Department of Labor to issue new paycard guidelines

Paycards have grown in popularity as a means of compensating employees and as such, have courted the attention of regulators. The New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL) has proposed guidelines for paycard implementation to make the process as fair to workers as possible. 

"For several years at least, many employers with a large non-exempt workforce – particularly in the retail and hospitality industries – have moved towards pay cards as a means to reduce payroll administration costs," explains JD Supra, business advisor. "Most states either regulate pay card systems lightly (with fairly minimal disclosure and free withdrawal requirements) or not at all."

Some of the NYSDOL-proposed regulations include:

A description, in plain language, of all employee … more

Samsung Pay delay reminds merchants: Easy does it

As the original rollout date approached, some observers were surprised to hear that Samsung delayed the launch of Samsung Pay until later this year.

As the original rollout date approached, some observers were surprised to hear that Samsung delayed the launch of Samsung Pay until later this year. The platform will be available to merchants in September and leaders at the company said the delay will allow Samsung to fine-tune some details about the service. 

"If anything, we think that by the time we launch (in September), that we will have significant announcements associated with which banks, which networks are participating with Samsung Pay and even which merchants and which programs attached to merchants will all be a part of Samsung Pay," Will Graylin, global Co-GM of Samsung Pay, told PYMNTS. "And that's just a slight hint into what will be coming. Samsung Pay is in a great position."

Aligning partners is one of the … more

How complex are your payment interface needs?

One of the benefits of technological innovation is that in stores and restaurants, a point-of-sale system often performs other functions.

One of the benefits of technological innovation is that in stores and restaurants, a point-of-sale system often performs other functions. From workforce management to ordering and timekeeping, many different services can be integrated into a single, unified system. Moreover, many companies have expanded to multiple locations, so consistent platforms across those outlets is a priority. 

While this has streamlined digital transactions across multiple channels of a business model, it presents potential hurdles to upgrading old card reading devices. As the October EMV migration deadline nears, studies have shown that many businesses will take their time to get compatible with the new chip-and-pin system. The bigger and more complex an enterprise and the more heavily dependent it … more

Web-based processing models help churches and other nonprofits

Online payment platforms give nonprofits a new way to fundraise.

Nonprofits face a special set of hurdles when it comes to generating donations. The traditional development model, which relies heavily on paper mailings and requests for pledges over the phone, doesn't integrate itself into the lives of patrons the way an online interface can. At Vantage, we provide service to enterprises seeking donations on their website. This produces a steady revenue stream for organizations that depend on the generosity of supporters and provides those patrons with an easy and convenient platform to give. 

At Vantage, our solutions for similar organizations enhance an individual's ability to give, reduce the administrative time dedicated to accounting and are fully customizable to the needs of the organization. Your organization can pay a small processing … more

Slowly transitioning to mobile payments?

Here are three reasons why retailers may currently be hesitating to get compatible with a systems like Apple Pay and Google Wallet.

In the natural evolution of payment processing, mobile payments look to some like a final frontier. However, adoption will be slower than the media hype over mobile payment platforms over the next several years.

Satisfaction with payment cards will wane over time. Most businesses have had long and fruitful experiences with traditional payment platforms. Since estimates of mobile payment usership are low, many entrepreneurs are taking a wait and see approach to adopting new mobile payments by monitoring their own customer base and inquiries which they understand are unique to them and their market.

Yet, as these same businesses look to adopt EMV standards in face-to-face payment environments, adding the ability to accept mobile will certainly be top of mind. 

For card-not-present … more

How do your unbanked employees access funds?

Instead of depending on check cashers to access funds, paycard users enjoy the fluidity of a debit account to make purchases online, pay bills and take cash out from ATMs as needed.

Your company might have had spotty luck with its direct-deposit program. Some employees enrolled right away, while others forgot to complete all the necessary forms. Some may prefer to cash a physical paycheck while others fall into the "unbanked" category, effectively operating outside the financial system. According to the FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households, nearly one-third of American households fall under that last category, making it challenging for employers and employees to exchange funds. 

Paycards set up a clear solution to the problem: Mandating direct deposit. This allows employees with checking accounts to link their information to your payroll system, and those who are "unbanked" to enroll in a paycard program that provides them an easy way … more