Phoneswipe by North American Bancard review

Review of Phone Swipe, by North American Bancard (NAB),  a proprietary mobile payment application for merchants using NAB merchant services.

phone swipeFEATURES:

  • Application supports both cash and credit cards
  • Works on Android and Apple iPad, iPhone, Blackberry
  • Tax, tip, and discount options
  • Email or print receipts
  • Add inventory including photos
  • Receipts can be printed directly though AirPrint-enabled printers or Star thermal printers (Apple only) or emailed
  • Can be connected to a compatible cash drawer
  • Multiple readers can be linked to one merchant account

PRICING:

  • Swipe 2.69% flat rate
  • keyed 3.49% plus $.19 per transaction.
  • reader is free.
  • no monthly fees
  • The fine print: There are a ton of rules in the fine print. “Transactions that do not clear as priced are subject to MID or non-qualified surcharges (MID/NQS) that are billed back to you on your monthly statement.” Merchants will likely pay more than the quoted 2.69% on at least half of their transactions.

PROS:

  • Good video tutorials
  • See features

CONS:

  • Merchant cannot search history by cardholder name.
  • Does nothing to help merchants qualify for better rates; high penalties if you don’t.
  • Mobile requires NAB merchant account; if you change processors, the entire operation is impacted
  • NAB merchant account is typically a 3 year agreement with early termination penalties.

North American Bancard is a registered Independent Sales Organization/Merchant Service Provider for HSBC Bank USA, National Association, Buffalo, NY.

EDITOR SPEEDY COMMENTS:

  • I like some of the functionality of this device. If you’re already an NAB user, give it a try.
  • The distinguishing functionality of this app is the cash drawer. If you have limited space, and special needs, then this may be a solution. Note, it has very limited functions so would only be viable for very small businesses.
  • If you’re not an existing customer, then buyer beware. Merchants change processors on average every 2-3 years. It may be very disruptive to business operations when you change processors later since the mobile app is proprietary to North American Bancard. 
  • There are other options for mobile payments, including a different set of merchant benefits without tying you to specific processor.

DISCLAIMER: This review uses publicly available information posted on the product web site as of 5/25/2012. The review does not include the processor, just the product.