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Top 7 Mobile Payment Devices

Mobile payment technology has made it easier than ever for charities and not-for-profit organisations in the UK to accept card payments almost anywhere. No more hassle, no more expensive PDQ machine rental or merchant contracts. Just mobile payment devices that make card payments quick and simple, even when you haven’t got access to a hardwired connection.  

Here you’ll find a summary of the top 7 mobile payment devices available in the UK.

Fancy skipping to the most relevant bit for you? Here’s our quick round-up:

  • iZettle: The one for you if you just need a card machine.
  • Square: If you need more than just a card machine then this could be the one for you.
  • SumUp: A good choice for if you are just getting started.
  • PayPal Here: If you use PayPal then this is the best integration with that.
  • WorldPay Zinc: If you need to accept phone payments then this is one to look at.
  • SmartTrade App: This could be the best option if you don’t want a card reader and don’t want to pay a fee.

1. iZettle Card Reader

One of the most popular mobile credit card machines for small businesses in the UK is the iZettle card reader

Features

  • The iZettle card reader accepts chip and PIN and contactless card payments. It also takes popular mobile payments such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay. Plenty of options if taking donations!
  • Works alongside the iZettle App.
  • Uses a Low Energy Bluetooth connection.
  • When compared with other mobile credit card machines, this was up to 25% faster.
  • Contactless transactions of less than £30 are approved within seconds.
  • You can charge the device either via a USB cable, or through a dock which can be purchased separately. It takes between 1 and 2 hours to charge.
  • Good battery life – A fully charged device can last for 100 transactions or 8 hours.
  • If you sell or take donations online, you can use iZettle Ecommerce.

If you are looking to just get started taking card payments, then overall the iZettle credit card machine is great option. If you are a charitable organisation, then do look at the fees as they’re not the lowest you’ll find out there, however they are very straightforward and transparent. The great is that they will start to drop as the volume of payments increase.

Another big plus is that you don’t need to take out a contract to get started – The only ongoing costs are the transaction fees. It’s a popular choice for small businesses, and could be a great way to help you start taking donations via mobile payments.

You can find out more on the iZettle website here.

2. Square

Whilst Square is relatively new to the UK market, in America it’s pretty big – they are the largest provider of mobile credit card machines and readers in the world. Over here they are quickly becoming a popular option among small businesses and frequently pop up in online searches.

Interestingly, it was co-founded by a co-founder of Twitter and currently handles a whopping £40 billion worth of payments each year from across the globe.

Features:

  • If you use Square, you’ll be able to take chip and PIN cards, contactless cards and other mobile payments.
  • For one low rate, you can accept Visa, Mastercard and American Express payments.
  • You’ll be able to see deposits in your bank account from as soon as the next business day after taking payments.
  • With Square you get a free point-of-sale app which is compatible with Apple and Android devices, Smartphones and Tablets).
  • You have the option to save cards on file for people who need to make multiple payments.
  • As well as mobile card payments, you can also take payments online, over the phone and via invoices

The Square Reader is the payment processing product at the core but there is much more to them than just a card machine. The great thing about Square is that you could use it to manage payments across your entire business, from face to face payments, to online, over the phone and via invoice. If you are a charitable organisation, this could give you several different options for taking donations.

Price wise their fees are the same as iZettle so it may come down to the additional features that each offer, and which ones better match your organisational needs. iZettle and Square are pretty evenly matched if all you need is a card reader, but if you need more than that then the additional features, including their Square Terminal, that Square offers could put this one out in front.

You can find out more about Square on their website here.

3. SumUp

Similar to iZettle, SumUp is a dedicated, standalone credit card machine provider. The fact that they offer a simple, flat transaction fee is probably their major selling point. If you process low volumes of card transaction, perhaps if you are just starting to try and take donations this way, then this could be a great option. It might however not be the right one if you foresee a big volume of card payments, or plan to take a lot of donations this way.

Features:

  • SumUp accept all debit and credit cards.
  • People can pay with a tap of their card or phone via contactless, through Chip & PIN or a goold old fashioned magnetic swipe.
  • There are no fixed monthly costs with this one.
  • Very hassle free with no contract, no paperwork and all done via an online application.
  • The card reader is compatible with iOS and Android smartphones or tablets, and connects via Bluetooth.  

SumUp might be without the bells and whistles but it also comes with lower transaction fees. It is  a strong alternative to iZettle and Square for organisations that don’t take high volumes of card transactions.

Visit their website here to find out more.

4. MyPOS

Offering a much wider range of readers than the companies above, MyPOS is the newest entrant to the UK card machine market.

Features:

  • A variety of options through their range of machines, from the GO to the N5.
  • For those that are passionate about doing their bit to protect the planet, it’s good to know that they are Eco-friendly and paper-free.
  • Their card readers have a colorful LCD display.
  • Their devices have a powerful battery life.
  • They come with a 1 year warranty and 30 Days money-back guarantee.
  • When you join you get a myPOS Account, myPOS Business Debit Card and a free DATA card.

This offering is slightly different to the ones we’ve spoken about so far. MyPOS have a wider range of features as well as an account that works almost like a bank account. They could be a great all-in-one solution to your payments needs. At 1.75%, their feeds are inline with both iZettle and Square. They have a wide range of machines with plenty of unique accessories so you can really customise your machine to suit your organisation. They are certainly worth a look.

Learn more on their website here.

5. PayPal Here

Here’s a name that we’ve all heard before! But have you come across their mobile credit card payment machine offering? Paypal Here is PayPal’s mobile credit card machine solution. They’re not as competitively priced as the likes of iZettle, but the ability to integrate directly with PayPal is a pretty big plus.

Features:

  • You are able to accept card and contactless payments without any monthly fees.
  • You don’t have to wait days to see the money – Payments reach your PayPal account in a matter of seconds.
  • You can take payments via Apple Pay and Android Pay.
  • Their customer support team are based in the UK.
  • There is no fixed term commitment with PayPal Here.

Overall, the main selling points of PayPal Here over iZettle are that it integrates with your PayPal Business account. The great thing about this is how quick you can get up and running – You can apply and pay for your PayPal Here reader using a PayPal Business account. You can also manage online and offline payments all in one place.

Features wise, the credit card machines of PayPal Here and iZettle are very similar. The difference may come when you look at fees as iZettle’s are likely to be lower than PayPal Here at most transaction levels. If you are only looking at taking in-person card payments, then the diversity of add-on products and lower initial machine costs from iZettle may set that one out in front.

For more information on PayPal Here look at their website here.

6. WorldPay Zinc

WorldPay Zinc is WorldPay’s mobile credit card machine solution for small businesses. Whilst WorldPay might be the UK’s largest credit card processing company, one major drawback is that this keypad doesn’t accept contactless payments at the moment. They do however offer a range of other credit card machines and merchant services which enable both offline and online payment processing. You can also use it for phone payments.

You would be able to process contactless payments with WorldPay, but you would have to choose one of their full priced card machines.

Features:

  • They are the UK’s leading card payment system with a secure Chip & PIN solution.
  • It is compatible with iPhone, iPad, Android phones & tablets.
  • You can take payments face-to-face or over the telephone.
  • It enables instant issue receipts by email or SMS text message.
  • The keypad comes with a 12-month warranty.

As WorldPay offer a higher margin traditional PDQ machine, their Zinc offering is a very stripped-down mobile credit card machine solution so as not to compete with their other products.

If your organisation is processing less than £5,000 per month in card transactions, and if you don’t need to accept contactless payments, then WorldPay Zinc could be a reasonable solution for you. Another plus would be if you take in-person and phone payments, but nothing online.

7. SmartTrade App

This one is a bit different to all of the above and is aimed at trades people. The SmartTrade App doesn’t require a card reader, and instead scans a customers credit or debit card with a smartphone. It comes with 3 payment options – Face to face, over the phone, or through emailed paylinks. Perhaps the most interesting element to this, is that you can pass the card fees onto your customer so you don’t end up paying anything. Their fees are however a bit higher than what we’ve mentioned above.

Features:

  • You don’t need a credit card reader.
  • By rolling onto the customer’s bull, you can benefit from a 0% per card transaction option.
  • Use it to create professional customised invoices for your organisation.
  • Go paperless and send online quotes to customers and get them accepted in one click.
  • You can accept Visa, Mastercard and Amex, as well as all major foreign cards.

If your organisation process few but high value transactions then this could be a useful option for you. It does seem to make sense for tradespeople who don’t want to have the hassle of a credit card machine, but who want to be able to accept payment by phone. The zero fee card payment option is also probably rather tempting. However, their per transaction fee and monthly plans might mean that it’s not quite right for all merchants.

To learn more about SmartTrade App visit their website here.

Hope you enjoyed this round up of UK mobile payment devices! Follow along @Donaterapp for more useful info about mobile payment technology.