POS Technology At The Nat Restaurant Show Part 2 – EMV at the table?

square apple pay

(continued from part one) –  

So, the NRA show was great!   One area that I had hoped to see and hear about new improvements was EMV / pay-at-the-table

Perhaps, like me, you eat out a lot. You wave and flag your waiter down to get the check,  hopefully they get it to you in only five minutes or so.  Then  you look at it and see your credit card disappear with the waiter and wait another five or ten minutes to get it back.   Gosh.  That’s a lot of wasted time. 

Waiters who hustle to turn their tables are pleasant to work with, but that is more the exception than the rule.  An EMV device brought to the table for payment would be a timesaver, as well as a relief.   In the last month, the lack of availability has been the number one concern voiced to me by restaurant owners and operators.  Very few hospitality software companies are offering it yet.   I asked about it at every booth I visited at NRA.

About nine out of ten software companies said they were not ready yet – and it would either be available in late 2016, or sometime in 2017.  A few companies did have it available – mostly it was the companies who were selling hospitality software outside the United States, where EMV and pay at the table has been the standard for over a decade.  

Companies like Squirrel Systems and Touch Bistro had it available.  They are both based in Canada.   For US based companies, only NCR Silver and Square said it was available.  Square had a portable device for Apple Pay (see image). 

(The NCR device was shown in part one of this article.)

The NRA show offered a new twist on the traditional keynote address, “Signature ’16: Turn the Tables,” which resulted in an inspiring and engaging conversation on Sunday. 

The Association’s President and CEO Dawn Sweeney hosted three of the restaurant industry’s game-changers, who are turning the tables on conventional thinking, and answered provocative questions gathered from social media ahead of time.

Sweeney faced the future of local food with The Kitchen’s Kimbal Musk; talked the evolution of guest experience with Red Robin’s Denny Marie Post; and addressed the benefits of conveniently connecting diners and restaurants with Uber Everything’s Jason Droege.

Throughout the 90-minute keynote panel discussion, each trailblazing executive discussed with the NRA Show’s audience how the business of hospitality is evolving and continuing to cater toward a multitude of customers and age groups through brand revitalization, technology, sourcing, and more. Each session produced social media-worthy snippets on topics ranging from restaurants creating dishes that are made to go viral, implementing technology to enhance diner choices, and striving to source local on a larger scale.

If you didn’t make it to Chicago this year – put it on the schedule now.  The show is affordable, informative and you’ll walk away with more enthusiasm and perspective for the hospitality industry than you can imagine. 


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Let’s talk about the minimum wage.