Executive Briefings

Does IBM Sale of POS Unit Spell the End of Point-of-Sale Hardware Business?

When IBM announced it was selling its entire POS business to Toshiba TEC for $850m, it was arguably the most explicit sign yet that the retail POS hardware business is on its last legs. Not IBM's POS business, but retail POS activity in general.

Beyond IBM's history of selling out key areas (printers, laptops, disk drives, etc.), it's the popularization of in-store tablets along with the integration of mobile and e-commerce. Retail Columnist Todd Michaud predicted in January that this year would see the death of the traditional POS. IBM apparently agrees.

IBM's move is not solely to abandon POS hardware - Toshiba is expected, more or less transparently, to handle all of IBM's existing POS accounts, including Wal-Mart, Costco and Toys"R"Us - but to focus on its infinitely more profitable software and services effort called Smarter Commerce.

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Keywords: Retail, Business Intelligence & Analytics, Technology, Business Strategy Alignment, Supply Chain Analysis & Consulting, Global Supply Chain Management, Point-Of-Sale Systems, POS Data

Beyond IBM's history of selling out key areas (printers, laptops, disk drives, etc.), it's the popularization of in-store tablets along with the integration of mobile and e-commerce. Retail Columnist Todd Michaud predicted in January that this year would see the death of the traditional POS. IBM apparently agrees.

IBM's move is not solely to abandon POS hardware - Toshiba is expected, more or less transparently, to handle all of IBM's existing POS accounts, including Wal-Mart, Costco and Toys"R"Us - but to focus on its infinitely more profitable software and services effort called Smarter Commerce.

Read Full Article


Keywords: Retail, Business Intelligence & Analytics, Technology, Business Strategy Alignment, Supply Chain Analysis & Consulting, Global Supply Chain Management, Point-Of-Sale Systems, POS Data