Why is Point of Sale getting harder?1 min read


Like most Canadians my credit card was recently replaced with a Chip Card.  Now my Visa requires a PIN to be entered when the transaction is processed.  This creates some very frustration experiences:

1/ No Remote Machine

Many restaurants only have Visa terminals in one location in the restaurant.  This means that I have to walk with the server to where the terminal is located to process to transaction.  Not the best experience for date night…

2/ Signature Too, Please

Some vendors seem to require a signature, even after I just went through the insert card and PIN dance.  I’m not really why but I think its a legacy issue.

3/ Transfering…

Many of the remote terminals transfer data over a very slow connection, this means I’m waiting while the terminal tells me also sorts of informative stuff like  DNS Established, TCP Enabled, Negotiation Established, Transfering… Transfering… and more Transfering… and finally approved.

4/ Strange Exemptions

Some vendors don’t seem to require my PIN at all, they can just swip and give me a receipt with no signature.  I’m not really sure the pattern here but McDonalds never asks for my PIN and Subway always asks for my PIN at roughly the same value so it must be vendor related.

The one good thing that the chip cards seem to have solved is whole card upside down or right side up issue that most swipe terminals struggled with…