Hands-On With PayAnywhere's Wireless Credit Card Reader

PayAnywhere today announced that it will begin shipping its wireless credit card reader to retailers. Available for Android, BlackBerry and iOS devices, the card reader functions similarly to Square's credit card reader in that it connects directly to your device's 3.5mm audio jack. Transactions are handled using the PayAnywhere app, and are processed wirelessly via your device's 3G or 4G connection. If you don't have an available connection, transactions can be stored and forwarded when a connection becomes available.

We stopped by PayAnywhere's booth here at CTIA 2012 and tried the card reader and app out for ourselves, and were impressed with how intuitive and easy it was to use. The app features a basic menu from which merchants can input their customer's purchase information. The demo we tried was set up for a food kiosk, so we ran through a standard lunch purchase. We bought a sandwich and drink, and simply tapped credit to pay with our credit card.

PayAnywhere said its card reader is almost twice as long as the competition's in order to improve its reading capabilities, and it certainly worked well. We only ran into a short issue when the reader was seated on a table and we couldn't swipe the card all the way through, but during standard usage (holding the device and swiping), it worked like a dream.

The biggest benefit PayAnywhere has going for it is that it charges clients the lowest transaction fee in the eCommerce space, 2.69 percent per swipe. The company has also chosen to provide its clients with the card reader and app for free. Signing up for the service is free as well, making it an attractive option for small business owners looking for an inexpensive way to begin accepting credit and debit card transactions, something that PayAnywhere says can boost overall sales by as much as 40 percent.

Keep an eye out for PayAnywhere at your favorite food stand in the coming months.

Daniel P. Howley
LAPTOP Senior Writer
A newspaper man at heart, Dan Howley wrote for Greater Media Newspapers before joining Laptopmag.com. He also served as a news editor with ALM Media’s Law Technology News, and he holds a B.A. in English from The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.