The Evolution of the POS System from Cash Register to Modern POS Systems!

The idea of a POS system erupted in 1879, with the creation of cash registers. Since then, it has gone through many technological changes to make it more efficient and quick.

The point of sale (POS) system helps businesses to complete and track daily transactions. There is a vast difference between today’s POS and traditional bookkeeping systems. The advent of technology has prompted business owners to upgrade their checkout processes according to time to reduce the burden on cashiers and simplify it for their customers. Business leaders are in a continuous search for ways to make businesses more efficient and robust. 

In this article, we will go through the evolution of the POS from cash registers to modern POS:

The history:

The whole idea started when James Ritty from Ohio, a saloon owner with his brother, invented a cash register and named it “Ritty’s incorruptible cashier.” The idea popped up when he was on his way to Europe in 1878, and he observed a machine that counts ship’s propellers rotation. Ritty wanted to make a solution that could track the number of sales and prevent employee theft. 

Ritty’s register is a basic model that did not even have a drawer to keep the cash. It was capable of monitoring sales and the amount of each sale. After years of hard work, they started a manufacturing factory of cash registers.

Later he sold the company to Jacob H. Eckert that started the national manufacturing company. Eckert sold his company to John H. Patterson. Patterson post taking over the business; changed the name to National cash register that even exists today. He made vital changes like personal employee drawers and paper receipts of all the necessary transactions. 

Before the 21st century:

Charles F. Kettering, who worked with the National Cash Register, made the first cash register with an electric motor. This invention acted as a catalyst to increase sales and keep an eye on the transactions. He added basic accounting, tailored sales categories, and the first attempt to make an automatic inventory management system. In the mid 20th century, POS solutions became a necessity for every business.

In 1973 IBM developed the first computer-driven cash register. The system had a mainframe that processed and displayed to the mainframe. McDonald’s started using the POS systems invented by William Brobeck in 1984. It was the first microprocessor-controlled cash register that helped the food industry to manage reports and receipts. 

As technology was evolving, Niyst launched the first electronic POS system (ePOS). The same year Martin Goodwin and Bob Henry created and deployed an IT retail POS on windows. 

The start of the 21st century:

Early 2000 was an evolutionary era for POS solutions because of more advanced computers and networks. The availability of superfast internet shifted ePOS to the cloud that convinced more businesses to adopt it because of the features and less expensive availability. 

Cloud-based POS system made businesses more robust because it enabled any device as a POS with an internet connection. The best ones include a bar-code scanner in the smartphone with NFC technology that accepts card payments. The invention of software as a service (SaaS) reduced the burden on business owners to update software and licenses as the POS vendors are responsible for doing that. 

In the last decade;

Since 2010, business owners can streamline their processes because POS software helped them to handle both the front end and back end with ease. The systems can take care of inventory, marketing, staff management, accounting, and customer information; to store, analyze, managed through a single interface. 

THE cloud-based POS software market has grown exponentially in the last decade. Businesses now can store and save sales to customer’s data on the cloud for easy access to data. It is a perfect tool for retailers with multiple outlets to unify their operations in a single platform. 

Cloud POS has emerged new and efficient trends like mobile POS (mPOS). Tablet became the most preferred deployment device for many POS vendors as it is portable and cheap. Restaurant owners can implement mPOS for better communication and avoid mistakes. The deployment of the software on mobile devices has made it easier for employees to search for products, take payments, and complete tasks. Customers now can bill their product themselves using technologies like NFC and blue tooth.

The future of POS:

The paradigms of businesses will change in the near future; the POS software will help your business more than being online and connected. 

Better integration and centralized retail systems:

Online POS software will enable businesses to manage their sales, inventory, customer base across multiple outlets and deliver the same standards of service. Customers choose different modes to shop; the POS system will help businesses uniting online, offline, and many other innovative shopping solutions. 

Strengthen the store:

The best point of sale system will have sensors, touch screens, multiple payment options, and many more features. Business owners can enrich themselves using technologies like RFID, mobile billing, transparent feedback, and traffic analysis. It will prompt POS vendors to give top-notch service to make businesses grow. 

For example, business owners can integrate Store beacons in the POS system and use the data in reports. Few businesses used this trend the potential and market of this will grow in the coming years. 

More payment options:

Cash and credit will always be an essential part of any business. The economy is very volatile; it keeps on evolving with time. The customers will adapt to more payment options in the future. There is a rise in digital payments like; mobile payment wallets and other electronic payments. Any business owner needs to integrate new and secure payment options in the POS systems to continue making revenue. 


Point Of Sale system (POS) has made revolutionary changes and is evolving to make businesses more powerful. There have been eminent progress in the last two decades. The technology will make POS software even more robust to efficiently use, record, and manage data for the best interests of businesses.  

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