Six years after launching its ‘Albert’ series of payment terminals, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) has rolled out its replacement, called ‘Smart’.

The immediate advantage for retailers is a boost to connectivity options, according to CBA, as the new terminals offer dual SIM functionality, plus Wi-Fi.

While an outage from one telco, or on one SIM will not make the device automatically shift to the back-up sim, or Wi-Fi, anyone within the store can quickly make the change if needed.

CBA general manager of merchant solutions, Karen Last tells Retailbiz, “Functionality is important in retail context. If you have a sales assistant working, without the owner being in the store, they have control over the management of the terminal in the store.”

Last also points out that different connectivity options are important for merchants in Australia: some may have more reliable Wi-Fi than a 4G/3G connection or vice-versa.

Based on the Android system, the Smart terminals also introduce an ‘app marketplace’, with built in features for split payments, surcharging, tipping, and email receipts, along with a ‘Lite POS’ app for ‘key retailers’.

Unlike the Albert terminals, the Smart system will allow for custom-built apps, provided they meet the strict cybersecurity demands of banking systems, says Last.

CBA is also releasing a pocket-sized payment terminal (a secure card reader) that can pair to businesses’ tablets or phones to take chip and contactless payments.

The Smart Mini is being piloted pre-Christmas, with Last telling RetailBiz that the bank expects to roll them out to merchants next year.

For businesses still using the Albert terminals that want to upgrade, Last says there is no cost involved.

“Albert owners just need to call in to get switched out. There’s no pricing difference, no upgrade fee, and we can get them switched out within a couple of hours from the request.

“It’s been six years since we went live with Albert. Our objective is to take them all out and replace them with these. We want to make sure everyone has access to that reliability,” Last says.