Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is introducing a new technology into its EasyPay POS system which will replace the current iPod touch and its card reader used in Apple retail stores.
The new system will run on the iPhone 5s and include an updated credit card reader attached to the devices with RFID functionality. The new system will also be able to read chip-and-PIN cards, which are equipped with both an embedded chip and a traditional magnetic stripe. Cardholders must enter their PIN or sign for each transaction to be approved. If the card is stolen, the embedded microchip makes the card extremely difficult to counterfeit or copy.
Analysts are considering Apple's move to the new POS system a preventive strike against the low security that magnetic-stripe credit cards provide, a concern that has been top of mind for merchants following a string of retail data breaches that began over the holiday season.
Apple's new system reportedly uses an iPhone 5s shell made by VeriFone Systems. The new shell has an area above the PIN pad that could later allow the system to enable NFC contactless payments, reports Forbes. Apple has long been expected to equip the iPhone with NFC, which can also be used for sharing photos, documents and other data.
Apple's EasyPay system has been used in its retail stores since 2009 and allows shoppers to check out via the fourth-generation iPod touch from anywhere on the sales floor without having to ever visit a register. Employees can email customers their receipts directly from the device.
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