The point-of-sale has undergone something of an identity shift over the past several years, as hard-wired, all-in-one units are being replaced by a variety of mobile devices. For years, hospitality operators have been clamoring for industry-tailored, affordable solutions that allow them to bust lines and break tableside ordering barriers. In October, Motorola released a much-anticipated enterprise tablet for retail, with a design that’s inspired by sleek consumer devices. While it remains to be seen if hospitality operators will pay the price for an enterprise tablet (and in fact this year’s survey suggests that many have grown tired of waiting), the software community has been a bit ahead of the curve, developing a bevy of applications for use on both customer- and employee-facing consumer devices.
In its annual POS Software Trends report, VSR's sister publication Hospitality Technology takes a look at industry-wide innovation priorities for point-of-sale software. The editors talk to leading POS software developers to find out what enhancements they’ve made to their technologies this year, and what R&D they have planned for the year ahead. In 2011, many POS software developers focused on launching new options to help mobilize operators, connect them directly with their customers, and allow more visibility across the enterprise. Social media, cloud computing and mobile solutions dominated this year, and most vendors report these trends only growing stronger in 2012. Their input is covered in the “Vendor Innovations & Predictions” section.