For home-based travel agents whose “office” often means the local Starbucks or outdoor café, having a way to swipe a client’s credit card and sealing the deal in just about any location could be a revolutionary development. Well, for those agents with iPhones, the revolution has begun!
Business software specialist Intuit is bringing an entire credit-card payment solution to the iPhone, an addition that will help boost the device's presence among small-business users.
According to TGDaily, Intuit has teamed up with Mophie to launch a credit-card reading peripheral for the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G (no support for iPhone 4 yet). It's targeted at on-the-go professionals who need to accept credit-card payments but are not necessarily wired to a credit card terminal. With the new system, a travel agent can conceivably start accepting credit cards in as few as 15 minutes.
With Mophie, there is a clip-on card reader, where a business owner can swipe a card and the customer will sign on the iPhone screen. This is important since credit-card processing fees tend to be lower (as compared to entering the credit-card number).
Similar software options already exist across mobile platforms—Intuit already has an app called GoPayment—but they require the user to manually type in all the credit-card information. This solution would make the process much easier by incorporating an actual card reader.
Apple, which has been trying to convince people that the iPhone is a good device for business consumers, will even devote shelf space to the new product at its retail locations across the country.
The Complete Card Solution system will retail for $180. Intuit's credit-card processing software costs an additional $13 per month.