Intuit GoPayment: This service offers two tiers--a free service that charges merchants a 2.7-percent fee for each swiped transaction, or a $13-a-month service for high-volume users, which drops the transaction fee to 1.7 percent. (That's if you use the card reader; you can key in a credit card number via your iOS device's touchscreen, but Intuit charges a higher fee for those transactions.) Intuit also offers integration with its QuickBooks small-business software, which might ease a merchant's paperwork hassles. Vendors are promised access to their money within two to three days of the transaction.
LightSpeed: This iPad-based system encourages "upselling" with a feature that shows products related to the one being purchased by the customer. Merchants will need more than a tablet to get started, however. LightSpeed for iPad is part of a broader ecosystem of products that includes a Mac-based point-of-sale system; the service requires the use of a Mac, in fact, to run the LightSpeed for Mac desktop application to administer the service within a store and to process returned and exchanged items. Businesses have to buy one "user license" per tablet. The cost of a single license? $749--though free 30-day demos are available.
PayPal Here: No tiers here; PayPal will simply charge a 2.7 percent fee per swiped transaction. The company is attempting to entice merchants with access to PayPal's existing customer base of more than 100 million people who already use the company for online financial transactions, along with the promise of round-the-clock tech support--and immediate access to funds in their PayPal account.
Square Register: Like PayPal, it charges one rate: 2.75 percent. Like NCR Silver, the Square Register app expands the company's services beyond mere card-reading to all aspects of a retail sale, even offering cloud-based business analytics that a business owner can check remotely. The company promises next-day deposit of funds into a merchant's bank account.