Payment disruption hits the enterprise as Revel launches its latest iteration, Atlas

Revel systems ipadIn case you haven’t noticed, the retail payment industry is ripe for disruption. In fact, said disruption in manifesting itself in a variety of ways. Square has its sights set on local vendors, and has amped up outreach by putting its units on shelves at Walgreen’s, Stapes, and FedEx. New app Paydragon has targeted the food cart line with user-friendly QR codes. Belly offers rewards systems — as well as iPads — to small retailers.

So what do all of these applications have in common? They’re aiming for the small, local, mom-and-pop types that are best suited for opening an iPad and setting up shop. Which means that the enterprise point-of-sale client is still up for grabs, and Revel Systems has staked its claims here. “We’re not going after the street vendors or people buying couches off of Craigslist – we’re going after the enterprise level POS system,” co-founder and CEO Lisa Falzone tells me.

If that weren’t already clear, its latest iteration, Atlas, makes certain Revel’s market intentions. The updated version includes a slew of capabilities for large chain, multi-location businesses that not only replace traditional cash registers but offer fully-featured management software (which includes payroll and employee scheduling services). The biggest upgrade, perhaps, is Atlas’ offline mode, which means that shoddy Internet service can’t keep the POS application down. “Everything is based in the cloud,” co-founder and CTO Chris Ciabarra says. “All the data gets downloaded immediately. With Atlas, it won’t go down. You won’t lose access.”

Also included in Atlas is multi-location support, which will handle sales tax depending on location — as well as, perhaps more importantly, the ability to handle the load. “This is very heavy duty cloud-based computer,” says Ciabarra. “We have multiple data centers. If one goes down, we bring one up automatically. And everything runs locally so users won’t even know the system went down. It’s a multiple failover process — in the cloud and in the iPad app. It’s engineered so that there’s no downtime.”

Revel Systems is a relatively young company, but has been able to put 500 Revel terminals out into the market. And that’s thanks to this surprisingly wide open playing field. When asked what their main competition is, Falzone tells me its the old-fashioned cash register. Businesses interested in making the POS solution switch find themselves heading toward Revel once they need a stronger service. A few months ago, she told me that she “didn’t want to name names” but that customers have come to Revel saying they need a better system. Revel partners with Geek Squad and supplies the hardware so the setup and installation are a smooth process. 

The Revel API means that the system will continue to grow. Falzone previously told me that there’s plenty of developer interest, saying LivingSocial, Opentable, and Groupon would be great applications to incorporate.

“There’s just so much demand for this system,” says Falzone. “Everyone in this industry has been working with touch surfaces their whole life with these systems, and they are looking for this product.”

Emerging Tech

Death from above? How we’re preparing for a future filled with weaponized drones

Drones are beginning to enable everything from search & rescue, to the delivery of medicines to hard-to-reach places. But they are also being used as cheap, and deadly flying bombs. How can we defend ourselves?
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in October, from 'The Witch’ to ‘Black Panther’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, subdued humor, or anything in between.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Photography

Adobe Premiere Rush CC is the cloud-based video editing app you've been waiting for

On stage at Adobe MAX 2018, Adobe announced its cloud-centric, social video-editing application, Adobe Premiere Rush CC. We took some time to put it through its paces to see what it offers, how it works, and what's missing.
Wearables

Skydio’s self-flying drone now has an Apple Watch app for flight prep

Skydio's clever R1 autonomous drone now has its own Apple Watch app, making flight preparations simpler than ever. The $2,000 flying machine is now also selling at its first retail outlet — Apple Stores in North America.
Emerging Tech

Light-swallowing room promises Call of Duty fans the blackest of ops

What's it like to be in a room fully painted with the world's darkest material, Vantablack? The makers of one of the year's top video games teamed up with Vantablack scientists to find out.
Emerging Tech

Scientists created a condom that self-lubricates during sex. You’re welcome

Researchers from Boston University have invented a special coating for condoms which make them respond to bodily fluids by becoming more slippery. Here's how their new breakthrough works.
Emerging Tech

Are e-cigarettes safe? Here’s what the most recent science says

Ecigarettes are widely regarded and advertised as a healthier alternative to cigarettes for people who are trying to kick the smoking habit. How safe are these cigarette alternatives? We went deep into the recent scientific literature to…
Emerging Tech

You’re so vein: Palm-based biometric system could help confirm your identity

Move over, Face ID! The next biometric security systems could rely on analyzing the unique vein patterns in your palm print. Here are some of the ways the technology could prove useful.
Emerging Tech

For only $4,950, you can get jetpack lessons from the world’s only instructor

Have you ever dreamed of flying using a jetpack? JetPack Aviation founder -- and the world's only qualified jetpack teacher -- David Mayman is now offering a day of flight instruction.
Emerging Tech

Biologists have found a hormone that could make space farming possible

Researchers have shown how space farming may be possible. By encouraging plants to excrete a certain hormone, they’ve demonstrated that crops can thrive despite challenging conditions, such as low-nutrient soil and microgravity.
Emerging Tech

Keep your holiday gift list high tech and under budget with these gadgets

Modern technology doesn't always come cheap, but there plenty of premium devices that don't carry a premium price. Whether you're looking for a streaming device or a means of capturing photos from above, our list of the best tech under $50…
Emerging Tech

When tech goes wrong: Banksy’s shredder was meant to totally destroy his artwork

Banksy's recent auction stunt was meant to totally destroy one of his most famous pieces of work, but a fault with the shredder has left the buyer with something almost certainly worth far more than the $1 million she bid for it.
Emerging Tech

The best drone photos from around the world

Most of today's drones come equipped with high-end cameras, which are quickly revolutionizing the world of aerial photography as we know it. Here are some of the best drone photos from around the world.