EFTPOS is a pervasive part of New Zealand society. Compared to the rest of the world, we are the leading users of EFTPOS – approximately two thirds of all our transactions are made through electronic payments. It’s also not uncommon to hear the word ‘EFTPOS’ being spoken at least once or twice on an average Kiwi day. Whether you’re buying coffee, paying for groceries or even making 25cent gum purchases at the dairy, we Kiwis use EFTPOS for pretty much everything.
But when and where did EFTPOS start, and where could it take us in the future?
A Quick History
EFTPOS, or electronic funds transfer point of sale, started its humble beginnings in NZ in 1985 at petrol stations. Four years later in 1989, it was officially launched across the country and quickly ramped up in popularity. By 1990, Paymark reports processing 1 million transactions per month, and four years after that in 1994, their processing volumes were exceeding 10 million per month.
The rising trend of EFTPOS use over time hasn’t changed – it’s only magnified. As the more time passed and as the population grew, Kiwis have become more and more reliant on EFTPOS when paying for products and services instead of cash or any other payment method. Today, every Kiwi has an average of 1.5 EFTPOS/debit/credit cards – that’s around 7 million plastics in the entire country, give or take.
The most recent numbers from Stats NZ reports that Kiwi cardholders made 143 million transactions across all industries in October 2017, totalling at a whopping $6.9 billion. Additionally, Paymark reveals that on Boxing Day 2017 alone, $139.0 million worth of transactions went through their network.
The Future of EFTPOS
Due to our rampant use of EFTPOS, providers are always seeking new ways to improve the technology by making it more convenient and expanding its scope of use. Below are some prospects of where EFTPOS technology might be in the future:
- Mobile Pay – Many EFTPOS terminals now offer mobile pay. Mobile pay allows users to store their card details in their smartphones and then simply use those smartphones to pay for transactions. Similar to payWave or contactless payment methods, mobile pay is enabled through Near Field Communication (NFC) technology with mobile apps such as Apple Pay or Google Wallet. Mobile Pay still hasn’t quite caught traction in the NZ market yet, but it won’t be long before people can simply hover their phones over a terminal (as we would for chip cards), making POS transactions even faster.
- Online EFTPOS – Online EFTPOS isn’t necessarily new, but it’s still in its very early stages. Paymark, with ASB and Cooperative Bank, allows customers to purchase online by using their mobile banking application. This means you don’t need to enter in your personal details or your card details (and its related security information) when you shop online – your phone is your EFTPOS card. The whole process is faster, simpler and, most importantly, more secure.
- Biometric EFTPOS – This one is a bit sketchier than its counterparts, but it’s definitely in the works. Making purchases using only our fingertips or even facial scans is a possible future, and is already the present for some countries including the UK, England and Japan.
With all that’s in store for EFTPOS and its strong presence in our society, perhaps it’s about time your business gets a point of sale system upgrade. POS Technology is one of the best EFTPOS providers NZ wide, providing only the latest in cutting edge EFTPOS technology.
Talk to us today at 0508 2 POS TECH to get access to New Zealand’s largest POS service, support and sales organisation.