pair the iPhone with a credit card reader
  1. The Helcim Blog
  2. Merchant Guides

Take Payments On-the-go With the iPhone Credit Card Reader

Author Image

Labib Ahmad | August 30, 2023

“Start accepting credit and debit cards without spending any money on bulky equipment - start utilizing the iPhone credit card reader.”
8 min read
  • Content

    Is your business ready to start accepting in-person payments? Not sure which POS setup is right for you? Trying to cut costs while you're just starting out? Need a mobile and pocket-friendly way to accept payments? These are all good questions that might lead you to wonder if an iPhone credit card reader is the best point of sale (POS) solution for you and your business needs.

    When it comes to (POS) systems, an iPhone is ideal for being mobile, simple, and affordable. The iPhone credit card reader is the best of both worlds, combining the functionality of a payment gateway with the simplicity and mobility of an iPhone. Plus, if you need something a little more robust but still mobile, you can still skip the clunky POS system and simply pair your iPhone with a traditional card reader to take physical card payments (as opposed to punching in credit card details.)

    What is an iPhone credit card reader

    An iPhone credit card reader can be just your phone. Or, you can use it in conjunction with a credit card reader to accept card payments using Chip & PIN or Tap. It combines the power of an iPhone, a payment app, and a mobile credit card reader, making it simple for you to accept payments.

    Pair your iPhone device with a card reader to seamlessly accept mobile payments

    It's perfect for small businesses wanting to take in-person payments at their stores, clinics, or on the go. This setup is the most affordable and lets merchants start accepting payments instantly. This kind of POS system works anywhere with a Wi-Fi connection (if you're using it in conjunction with a card reader; otherwise, you can punch in transactions using your cellular data) and helps you serve customers quickly and easily— wherever they are.

    Advantages of pairing an iPhone with a card reader

    • Unmatched portability: Nothing can compare to the portability of an iPhone credit card reader. Think about it: you already bring it with you everywhere anyways! With it, you're able to accept credit card payments anywhere your business takes you.
    • Streamlined setup: Say goodbye to bulky equipment. The minimalist nature of an iPhone-based POS system means you only need the essentials, saving you space, time, and money.
    • Wire-free experience: Ditch the cords and cables. An iPhone is like a wireless credit card reader. It lets you start accepting contactless payments seamlessly without wires getting in your way.
    • Limitless connectivity: The freedom to connect wirelessly using Wi-Fi, data, or — if you're pairing it with a card reader— a hotspot connection means you can cater to your customers wherever they are.

    Will your business benefit from mobile credit card processing?

    If your business requires quick payment processing without a hefty equipment investment and you're looking for a fully mobile solution, an iPhone credit card reader is the optimal choice.

    Let's say you're a new business looking for a way to start accepting in-person payments. If you already have an iPhone (you most likely do), then you are able to start accepting payments right away. Your first option is to utilize the Helcim virtual terminal. With this, you are able to accept payments by sending invoices and accepting over-the-phone payments.

    Or, you can start utilizing the Helcim card reader, which, when paired with an iPhone, is the cheapest way to accept tap-to-pay and chip-and-pin payments. You no longer have to manually send invoices or enter customer credit card information. All you need to do is present the card reader while the customers taps their card. It's as simple as that!

    What type of business needs an iPhone card reader

    Here are a few types of businesses that can benefit from using an iPhone credit card reader:

    • Retail stores: In a retail setting, an iPhone credit card reader replaces the bulky POS system in exchange for portability. 
    • Food trucks: Food trucks and street vendors are always on the move, so it makes sense to have a way to take payments that's also as mobile as them.
    • Restaurants: Servers in a restaurant are able to bring the iPhone credit card reader directly to the customers, allowing them to pay on the spot and avoid lines.
    • Events: Trade shows and events are great places to utilize an on-the-go way to accept payments, avoiding the need to carry heavy POS equipment.
    • Personal trainers: Trainers need a payment system that's as flexible as them. The iPhone credit card reader allows them to accept payments wherever they offer their services.
    • Pop-up shops: A temporary retail space needs a quick and portable solution to take payments. An iPhone credit card reader is perfect for this.
    • Home services: Home-based services like gardening and painting can utilize the iPhone credit card reader to accept payments on the spot.

    These are just a few examples, but as long as your business needs to accept payments, the possibilities are endless.

    The best way to accept contactless payments

    According to a global consumer study by Mastercard, nearly 80% of respondents revealed they use contactless payments. And it's no wonder, mobile wallets like Apple Pay and Google Pay account for almost 50% of all global transactions. To account for all that demand for contactless payments, using an iPhone is a great way to punch in credit card details for your customers. Or, paired with a credit card reader, is a great and affordable option for your business to start accepting credit and debit cards, whether it's chip-and-pin or tap-to-pay.

    It's time to feel good about your payments

    Using a Credit card reader for iPhone

    The Helcim credit card reader is a sleek and affordable wireless credit and debit card reader that's easy to set up and even easier to use. Paired with the iPhone, it creates a portable POS system that easily fits in your pocket and has a battery life that lasts all day long. There are also no monthly fees, no contracts and no hidden fees. With interchange plus pricing, you get access to the lowest possible interchange rate for each transaction, meaning there are no surprises; you only pay for what you process, and that's it!

    What you need to have a working iPhone credit card reader

    The point of a system like this is that you don't need much to start taking payments. Here's all you need:

    • iPhone: You can use any iPhone as long as it runs iOS 13.0 and higher.
    • Credit card reader (optional but necessary for taking physical card payments): The Helcim credit card reader is the go-to choice to pair with an iPhone.
    • Internet connection: You will need a Wi-Fi connection or hotspot for the card reader to wirelessly accept payments anywhere in your store. However, you can access the virtual terminal through cellular data to process invoices or punch in transaction details.
    • Merchant account: You will need to create a Helcim account to start accepting payments. Don't worry; it's easy and free (and there are no contracts!)
    • Payments app: Lastly, you will need to download the Helcim Payments app on your iPhone. This app is an all-in-one point-of-sale system that lets you process payments wherever your business takes you.

    Why use an iPhone to take payments?

    There is a high chance your personal mobile device is already an iPhone. You can utilize what you already have at your disposal without spending any more money on bulky equipment. As long as your iPhone runs iOS 13.0 and higher, accepting payments with the Helcim Payments app and the Helcim credit card reader should be smooth sailing.

    3 simple steps to get set up and running

    We've taken the stress of setting up away from you; there are just 3 steps to be up and running:

    1. Download the Helcim Payments app onto your iPhone.
    2. Log into the Helcim Payments app.
    3. Connect your iPhone to the Helcim card reader.

    And It's as simple as that; you're set to start accepting payments!

    How to use the iPhone and credit card reader to accept payments

    Using your iPhone with the Helcim credit card reader is really easy! Here are the steps:

    1. Tap on the new payments tab on the iPhone
    2. Select the items or enter the amount of the transaction manually on the iPhone as per the customer's order
    3. Tap Process payment on the iPhone - the card reader should receive the command to take payment
    4. Pass the card reader to the customer - the customer can pay via tap or by inserting their card
    5. Once the payment has been processed, a confirmation page on the iPhone will appear
    6. Select the receipt option here - you have the option to print the receipt or send an email copy

    Final thoughts

    Equipping your business with the capability to accept contactless payments wherever an iPhone can be taken allows you to take mobile payments, ditch lengthy lines at the checkout counter, and minimize hardware expenses.

    If you want to have a system that better fits your payment needs and don't feel the need to spend more money on a limited and expensive countertop setup that you can't take anywhere, then an iPhone credit card reader is your best bet!

    Looking for a bigger screen instead? Try an iPad credit card reader system.


    How much do mobile credit card readers cost?

    If you already have an iPhone (which you most likely do), the Helcim Payment app is free. You can purchase the Helcim Card Reader outright for $129 CAD.

    With interchange plus pricing, you pay for only what you process. Small businesses save an average of 25% with Helcim, all with no contract, no monthly fee, and no hidden charges.

    Can I accept credit cards with an iPhone?

    Yes, you can process credit card payments through the virtual terminal or paired with a Helcim credit card reader.

    How do I connect a card reader to an iPhone?

    The Helcim card reader is Bluetooth enabled, meaning pairing with an iPhone is quick and simple. To learn more, read our step-by-step instructions.

    Is credit card information stored on an iPhone?

    You can securely save and store customer payment details through the customer credit card vault for future payments, which is not stored on the iPhone itself but on the cloud via the Helcim app, which can only be accessed with your secure login information. Your Helcim account is fortified with security measures like tokenization, encryption, and two-factor authentication to keep your account secure and your customer credit card details safe.

    It's time to feel good about your payments.

    Sign up instantly with no paperwork or commitments.

    Call to action background version 2 image

    We're always
    here to help.

    New to accepting card payments? We take the time to help you understand how it all works so you can make the best decisions for your business.

    • Speak to a real person, fast
    • Experts you can trust
    • No commission = no pressure
    Show more

    Have us contact you.

    Contact name cannot be blank
    Business name cannot be blank
    Please provide a valid email address
    Phone number cannot be blank

    The form was sent successfully!