No cashiers? Hema trials payment with employees’ mobiles
Hema is set to become the first retail chain in the Netherlands to test a new app that turns any phone into a payment terminal, making it possible to pay for purchases anywhere in its stores.
App developers ING and European payment provider CCV claim they are the first to put such a payment scheme into practice with a large retailer, making paying easier for consumers.
‘At peak times, when there are many people queuing at the cash registers, every store employee can help with the mobile they already have with them,’ ING’s Laurens Schretlen told the Telegraaf.
The makers say their app provides more convenience for customers and makes retailers, who don’t need to purchase any additional devices, more flexible. The device will reportedly take normal Dutch debit cards, some credit cards and Apple Pay and Google Pay.
Shorter lines are another hoped-for benefit, as all employees will virtually become mobile checkout units.
The trial will begin later this month in three of Hema’s 550 branches. Less space for checkout counters could translate into more space for displays, the company suggested. But Hema says it is not doing away with traditional checkout counters just yet. ‘A normal cash register is and remains necessary today. We see this as an extra service,’ said a spokesperson.
App developers say there is already interest from other large retail chains.
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