Swedish mPOS firm iZettle is introducing the world's first free-of-charge Chip & PIN reader for merchant customers across Europe.
The new iZettle Card Reader Lite connects to tablets and smartphones via cable. The company says it will continue to offer its Card Reader Pro model, which comes with a $75 price tag, a built-in display and wireless connectivity.
The Swedish firm is moving in the opposite direction of US innovator Square, which in November last year announced plans for a new chip card reader that will retail with a $29 price tag to replace its current free-of-charge mag-strip-only dongle.
“This is one of the boldest moves we have ever made,” says Jacob de Geer, iZettle’s co-founder and CEO. “Four years ago we upended the market with the world’s first mini chip card reader. We’re now embarking on the next step in our journey, with yet another ground-breaking offer that will cement our position as Europe’s leading mobile payments company.”
IZettle more than doubled its transaction volumes in 2014, and is now running at a total annual transaction rate of €2 billion. It remains bullish about the opportunities for growth, pointing out that some 20 million European small businesses don’t take card payments or have access to other decent payment tools.
“The Lite is a first of its kind," says de Geer. "Not only will it tear down the barriers small merchants face when setting up their businesses, it also raises the stakes for Europe’s payments industry."