Point of Sale

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Chapter 2: Review of Related Literature

This chapter tackles about the related literature of this certain system and also the theory of the author about her system.

Related Literature
The hardware of a POS system is also distinctive and important. A typical system includes a display screen for the clerk, a customer display, a cash drawer, a credit card swiping system, a printer, and a bar code scanner, along with the computer loaded with the POS software. Custom features may be added or removed, depending on the industry. A restaurant POS system, for example, may have a feature which prints order tickets directly in the kitchen, or a grocery store may have an integrated scale for weighing goods. Early electronic cash registers (ECR) were controlled with proprietary software and were very limited in function and communications capability. In August 1973 IBM announced the IBM 3650 and 3660 Store Systems that were, in essence, a mainframe computer packaged as a store controller that could control 128 IBM 3653/3663 point of sale registers. This system was the first commercial use of client-server technology, peer to peer communications, Local Area Network (LAN) simultaneous backup and remote initialization. By mid-1974, it was installed in Pathmark Stores in New Jersey and Dillard's Department Stores. Programmability allowed retailers to be more creative. In 1979 Gene Mosher's Old Canal Cafe in Syracuse, New York was using POS software written by Mosher that ran on an Apple II to take customer orders at the restaurant's front entrance and print complete preparation details in the restaurant's kitchen. In that novel context, customers would often proceed to their tables to find their food waiting for them already. This software included real time labour and food cost reports. In 1986 Mosher used the Atari ST and bundled NeoChrome paint to create and market the first graphical touch screen POS software.

In 1990, A wide range of POS applications have been developed on platforms such as Windows and Unix. The availability of local processing power, local data storage, networking, and graphical user interface made it possible to develop flexible and highly functional POS systems. Cost of such systems has also declined, as all the components can now be purchased off-the-shelf. The key requirements that must be met by modern POS systems include: high and consistent operating speed, reliability, ease of use, remote supportability, low cost, and rich functionality. Retailers can reasonably expect to acquire such systems (including hardware) for about $4000 US (2009) per lane.

There are also nearly as many proprietary protocols as there are companies making POS peripherals. EMAX, used by EMAX International, was a combination of AEDEX and IBM dumb terminal. Most POS peripherals, such as displays and printers, support several of these command protocols in order to work with many different brands of POS terminals and computers. The retailing industry is one of the predominant users of POS terminals. A Retail Point of Sales system typically includes a computer, monitor, cash drawer, receipt printer, customer display and a barcode scanner. It can also include a weight scale, integrated credit card processing system, a signature capture device and a customer pin pad device. More and more POS monitors use touch-screen technology for ease of use and a computer is built in to the monitor chassis for what is referred to as an all-in-one unit. All-in-one POS units save valuable counter space for the retailer. The POS system software can typically handle a myriad of customer based functions such as sales, returns, exchanges, layaways, gift cards, gift registries, and customer loyalty programs, BOGO (buy one get one), quantity discounts and much more. POS software can also allow for functions such as pre-planned promotional sales, manufacturer coupon validation, foreign currency handling and...
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