A point-of-sale (POS) system is a computerized replacement for a cash register. The system has the ability to record and process customer orders, process credit and debit card swipes, and manage inventory. Generally, a POS system has a personal computer as its core, which is provided with specialized Input/output devices and application specific programs. At the POS, merchants calculate the amount of purchase by customers and prepare invoices. It is the point where customers make payments for the goods they have purchased. After the payment is completed, customers are issued printed receipts of the transaction. Cloud-based POS allows for greater flexibility, improved information management, and greater data security.
A cloud-based POS market offers maximum flexibility for a variety of POS environments and the ability to communicate with all POS locations at a single instance. Generally, cloud-based systems operate on client-side hardware while using Internet infrastructure to move data back and forth with a remote server. Furthermore, cloud-based POS market helps in providing real-time transaction processing, sales, returns, and exchanges, with the flexibility to adapt to ever-changing business requirements. In addition, its failover system, Resilient POS, ensures business continuity even in the event of a dropped connection or outage.
A major driver of the cloud-based POS market is technological development in cloud computing. Clouds provide numerous computing resources that can aid organizations, whereas content management systems (CMSs) can provide the right content for the right user. Cloud-based solutions help in reducing the complexity of managing access controls and content classification and retention policies while providing monitoring, auditing, and reporting capabilities of information.
Moreover, Software as a Service (SaaS) content management systems offer a cost effective set of tools for content or document management for large as well as small and medium enterprises. Since a SaaS CMS is based on the cloud computing model, the capital expenses that are associated with traditional content management systems are eliminated. Large enterprises as well as SMEs prefer to operate their services on the cloud. Thus, the retail industry has also been enhancing POS systems using cloud computing. Moreover, many traditional POS suppliers are engaged in developing cloud-based POS software. For instance, global technology company NCR Inc., based in Duluth, launched a cloud-based POS software solution. Th software will be used on touchscreen POS and Apple mobile devices such as the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
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Advancements in technology have resulted in a rise in demand for POS terminal solutions. Increase in the adoption of credit and debit cards in transactions is further fueling demand for POS terminals. This, in turn, is driving the cloud-based POS market. The ease of use and high return on investment associated with POS terminals has increased demand for them across various industries such as retail, distribution, health care, and hospitality. However, data security concerns and the probability of card data breaches pose significant challenges to the market.
The cloud-based POS market can be segmented based on component, application, enterprise size, and region. Based on component, the market can be classified into solutions and services. The services segment can be further divided into professional and managed services. In terms of enterprise size, the Cloud-based POS Market can be categorized into small and medium enterprise (SMEs) and large enterprise. Based on application, the cloud-based POS market can be segmented into health care, retail & consumer goods, travel & hospitality, media & entertainment, and transport & logistics.
In terms of region, the cloud-based POS market can be segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa, and South America. North America is projected to hold a significant share of the cloud-based POS market, due to the invention of various cloud technologies in the region. Asia Pacific is estimated to be a lucrative region of the market due to new developments in cloud computing and significant penetration of the Internet in the region.
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Major vendors operating in the cloud-based POS market are Square Inc., Cegid, UTC RETAIL, Shop Keep, PAR Technology, Shopify, B2B Soft, Intuit, Lightspeed, Oracle Corporation, SalonTarget, RetailOps, Celerant Technology, and TouchSuite among others. Leading players in the market are focusing on the introduction of advanced services and solutions in order to strengthen their position and expand their customer base. Companies are extensively investing in R&D operations and are focusing on providing customized services to their customers.