Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

We would appreciate your suggestions on buying a tablet for taking credit cards with a new square chip reader

~Also we want to go pre-paid with no contract. your suggestions will be appreciated! Thanks so much. Kathleen Smith & Steven Hedstrom

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Comment by Stella Hofstedt on November 8, 2016 at 12:24am

I bought a used ipad off ebay.  $100.00 and it is doing well even with the current updates.  I was lucky an found one with a lifeproof brand case, so I don't worry so much about customers dropping it.

Comment by Barry Bernstein on November 7, 2016 at 4:22pm

I meant personally not peronally. I'm not a fan of public networks. It's a favorite of hackers world wide to steal your private info. I used to use my phone to purchase coffee at Starbucks. One day I got a message thanking me for putting $50 into my Starbucks account. That was nice of them except that I didn't put any money into my account. I went to my account on line and saw that there was a $0 balance in my Starbucks account. It turns out that the common thing for crooks to do is to sit in Starbucks and from their laptops, with a simple application and a $10 device, they can read the Starbucks card reader and access your account. I'm not sure why they put money into the account first, but, after doing so, they transfered the total amount into another account. Fortunately, I did not ever put more than $10 into my Starbucks account and I never linked any credit or debit cards to my Starbucks account. They could only take what was in the account. Starbucks gave me my money back and a $10 gift card to make up for the inconvenience. A quick search on line revealed that this has happened many times, mostly when people use a gift card given to them by someone else as a present or whatever. This didn't happen is some poor neighborhood, too. It happened at the Starbucks in downtown Birmingham Michigan.

Comment by Barry Bernstein on November 7, 2016 at 4:07pm

I think some of you have a hard time understanding the technical concepts. You do not live in the ether. To use the square or any other CC device, you need to connect to a network. Each telephone company that you connect to is it's own network. That's why you can connect to the internet with your phone without having an internet connection. If you refuse to have a smart phone, you still have to have connect to a network to take CC's. If you have a device that has wifi, you still need a network to connect to. Personally, I would never rely on having a booth that needs to be near a network, even the few shows that provide wifi connections. You are connected to their network. Also, there is no guarantee that the connection you are being provided is secure, meaning it would be easy for someone with a $10 device to access your CC and customers CC info. Those of you who buy a tablet at ATT or Verizon or any of the other phone companies gives you access to their network because you are paying for it. If you have a CC machine from some merchant services company, you still are paying a monthly fee to access their network except you get none of the benefits of connecting through your phone connection. Creating a hotspot is redundant because you are just broadcasting your network connection that your phone is hooked up to.

I can see using a tablet that is connected to your phone network to take CC's because of the bigger screen. It isn't anything special anymore. It's commonplace. You can use a stylus with your I-phone as easy as a tablet. Some Android phones come with a stylus.

You do not connect the internet through bluetooth. Bluetooth is just a protocal that lets you connect two devices. Bluetooth does not connect to the internet. It connects to the network, like your phone network. Your phone network connects to the internet. You are just connecting your I-pad to your phone network using your bluetooth connection. Bluetooth is much slower than wifi. So, you are better off connecting your I-phone directly to your I-pad. No need for bluetooth. The bluetooth has other functions like connecting your gps to the cars screen, or broadcasting hands free telephone calls from smart phone with a bluetooth connection, or, music from your car radio that is equipped with bluetooth. Many of today's new vehicles come with a wifi connection to a network provided by the car company. This allows you to broadcast Pandora or other internet radio, podcasts, gps, to your car speakers and dashboard monitor through bluetooth. I'm not sure if they allow a direct connection.

Peronally, when I'm at a show with no wifi close by, like 95% of the shows I do, I prefer to have a reliable connection. I prefer Verizon.

Comment by Bobby Weiss on November 7, 2016 at 3:56pm

I use a large screen cell phone 5.5", which is nice, but I will be trying a Samsung tablet shortly with data. I personally think the big screen will be a nice luxury. The people I talk to over the last 6 months or so seem to really praise Samsung (BUT none had the recalled stuff that was catching on fire??? that's a deal breaker!) and even many were apple converts. The price on Andriod devices, as mentioned, is also quite a bit less.

Comment by A. Denise Rollings-Martin on November 7, 2016 at 3:52pm

I have a 6S and use it to process with Square at shows. You don't need WiFi, just use your cellular mode to process payments. It's worked great for me.

Comment by A. Denise Rollings-Martin on November 7, 2016 at 3:51pm

Comment by Lisa SantaMaria on November 7, 2016 at 3:15pm
I am about to do my first show and just got the PayPal card reader. I have an iPhone 6s and an older (2012) large iPad. When there is no wifi, like in the car, I often connect the iPad to the phone using Bluetooth for Internet. What I'm getting to is...I'm guessing I'll have to use the phone for sales, right?
Comment by Kaytee Sumida on November 7, 2016 at 2:40pm

I got a Motorola "E" on Amazon for $20, without phone service. It uses WiFi, and does whatever  "outdated" smart phones do, except get phone/text mss. Square works with it, including the separate chip reader.

I also have a flip phone-- voice only. 

Comment by Paula Decker Haynes on November 7, 2016 at 2:31pm

I use my I phone for the most part. Also use the ipad but I am always afraid of breaking it, so have not taken it with me at all this year and the phone works great.

Comment by Mckenna Hallett on November 7, 2016 at 2:09pm

Hey Larry... Airplane mode turns off the wifi too. They wouldn't be able to "process" until they turned off that mode. And Murphy's Law will strike (apparently) no matter when they turn the phone back to receiving mode. They need a tablet. They just don't need a mobile plan.

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