New Apple Mac Pro - Episode 2

Comments

Rob Franks wrote on 1/20/2014, 9:35 PM
"I wonder if this is due to pressure from the customers not wanting to part with it. On the other hand, there are two places i go to semi-regularly that don't have customer-accessible checkout counters at all, claiming that it causes too much congestion with whole dining parties queuing up and blocking the doorway while one person stands there to pay."

There is no reason in the world why a business can't supply a machine at the table. We have pizza delivery people supply the machines on our doorstep when we want to pay by debit/credit card. It does cost money to upgrade though which may have something to do with their (slow) speed at the wheel, and there is a charge to these services. At first the stores here were trying to pass the charge onto the consumer, but these debit machines became such a big thing in Canada and so fast that soon if you were a store owner who didn't have one, you were going to lose business. Now it's totally free for the consumer and I don't know anybody who actually pays cash for anything anymore here
GeeBax wrote on 1/20/2014, 10:52 PM
Speaking for Australia:

[I]Do you have self checkout in some of your stores?[/I]

Virtually all supermarkets feature self-checkout here, and it is now happening in other stores.

Can you pay all your bills (water, hydro, cable... etc) on line (that includes through your smart phone)?

Yes, been able to do that for many years, and I can also send money to you if you like via the same banking facility, via my phone.

Can you deposit checks through your smartphone?

What are checks? :-) Seriously, who uses them?

Can you use debit cards everywhere or just some places which have the machines?

No-one would try to do business without a machine these days here. I have one I carry with me to shows. Even my local tradesmen carry them, plumbers, electricians and the pizza delivery boy.

And it was not a swipe at you or the US about cutting up cards, but the US is the only place in the world where I encountered it. I used to travel with only one international credit card until mine got cut up by a hotel in LA. I had been travelling a fair bit and each hotel I stayed at would take a chunk out of the card when I checked in, but several did not return the credit after the bill was settled, so that when I arrived in LA it was well over the limit, so the idiot behind the counter simply took a pair of scissors to it. That left me with no card for the rest of my trip.
TheHappyFriar wrote on 1/20/2014, 11:40 PM
In the Apple store you buy one to five products. In Lowes/Home Depot/Sears/Target/Walmart/etc I can easily buy a cart full, and a lot of odd shaped objects. Get 15 people who have 30 things they're buying and then you've got virtual lines everywhere vs organized lines in a dedicated line section.

Anyway... Apple store, we wanted firewire, they offer for extra $$. We wanted SATA plater drives, we were told no we don't. We wanted to burn DVD videos, we were told no we don't but we have to pay more $$. Apple's selling to NYC, LA, SanFran, etc. They're not selling to the other 90% of the USA. They just know if you sell to those tend setter places you'll bring the rest of the sheep to the sheers and fleece them easily.

I've never seen/heard of a CC cut up in the US. They just ramp up your interest rate. And in Canada, you may like the convince of paying be credit (really, what moron pays interest on a PIZZA?) but a cash tip ensures prompt delivery every time. :) If your card is being cut up it's your card company's idea, not theirs.

Besides, why complain about a hotel cutting up your card when, with all the fancy ways to check/pay your balance, you didn't KNOW you've go above your limit BEFORE you payed it? Come on, it takes ~60 second to check your balance and pay part of it off BEFORE you hand them the card.

We've been 100% cash/debit/check for ~3 years now and it's pretty nice to not worry about a bill showing up at the end of the month for a card. People I've encountered liked being handed $100 bills for $600 of work. :) Nobody was EVER impressed I could whip out a piece of plastic, which every moron can easily do!

EDIT: depending on who I'm dealing with, they like the cash enough they give me discounts/free work because of the convenience of them not having to deal with CC companies, banks, etc.
Kim Nance wrote on 1/21/2014, 1:45 AM
Hey GeeBax

Just curious. What would you say, if I said Armstrongs or AAV?

Regards

Kim Nance
Armadillo Post
GeeBax wrote on 1/21/2014, 1:47 AM
Besides, why complain about a hotel cutting up your card when, with all the fancy ways to check/pay your balance, you didn't KNOW you've go above your limit BEFORE you payed it? Come on, it takes ~60 second to check your balance and pay part of it off BEFORE you hand them the card.

Come on, think about it, when this happened we barely had mobile phones, much less the ability to check out anything on-line.

React less, comprehend more, and be friendly.
GeeBax wrote on 1/21/2014, 1:48 AM
Just curious. What would you say, if I said Armstrongs or AAV?

Ha, I would say you were very perceptive. And right on the money.
Terje wrote on 1/21/2014, 3:07 AM
>> may like the convince of paying be credit (really, what moron pays interest on a PIZZA

You could just as well ask what moron pays interest on a credit card? If you don't want to pay the pizza delivery guy using a credit card, you use your debit card. No issue. The terminal he carries handles just about any plastic method of paying there is.

Seriously, the US, with cheques no less, is a decade or two, at least, behind the developed world when it comes to financial transactions. My wife and I have our checking accounts in different banks. I need to transfer some money to her I go online (or on my phone) enter her account number and the money is in her account, depending on the time of day, from instantly to a couple of hours later. I could barely do that in the US when we both had our checking accounts in the same bank.

>> why complain about a hotel cutting up your card when, with all the fancy ways to check/pay your balance

Did you not read his post? He had already paid his balance. The problem is that when you check into a hotel they take a "hold" on your credit card for the expected amount. That amount doesn't show up on your credit card until they actually bill you. US hotels can be a week or more before they turn the "hold" into a purchase. The "hold" counts towards your limit but as I said, does not show up on your current balance. When I traveled the most back in the mid 2000's I had to have a 20K or it might have been 30K limit on my card to handle this (I traveled A LOT to Asia and flights etc were charged to my card, we were allowed to book business for all flights more than six hours - a business class ticket from LA to Bangalore is expensive).

>> it's pretty nice to not worry about a bill showing up at the end of the month

Sorry if this is nasty, but people who worry about CC bills are not managing their money. I use CCs all the time (I have been a compulsive miles horder since I crossed a million miles on AA) and I never pay interest.
Rob Franks wrote on 1/21/2014, 5:30 AM
"And in Canada, you may like the convince of paying be credit (really, what moron pays interest on a PIZZA?) but a cash tip ensures prompt delivery every time. :) If your card is being cut up it's your card company's idea, not theirs."
These are credit/DEBIT machines. I pay by debit all the time. Not sure why one would buy a pizza on a credit card when you can simply use debit.

"In the Apple store you buy one to five products. In Lowes/Home Depot/Sears/Target/Walmart/etc I can easily buy a cart full, and a lot of odd shaped objects. Get 15 people who have 30 things they're buying and then you've got virtual lines everywhere vs organized lines in a dedicated line section. "
Yeah... that's what I can't figure out. Apple sells maybe 5 or 6 major products. When I walked into that Apple store the other day it looked really bad. All this floor space for very little product. Anyway... I guess the lines are long when a new product is unveiled, but I'm having a hard time seeing long lines on a normal day. It certainly wasn't crowded when I was there.

"they like the cash enough they give me discounts/free work because of the convenience of them not having to deal with CC companies, banks, etc. "
The stores here in Canada resisted debit at first, but now love it. It lowers their risk with less cash hanging around.

drmathprog wrote on 1/21/2014, 6:33 AM
Perhaps Apple Stores have "on-the-spot" credit card check out because for some products (I'm specifically thinking of a fully tricked out Mac Pro here), it is no longer physically possible for the average adult to manhandle the cash required for such a transaction. ;-)

Perhaps even as I write this Apple is anxiously awaiting a response from the U. S. Federal Government to their request to begin reissuing "James Madisons" and "Salmon P. Chases". ;-)

Note: This is intended as humor.
deusx wrote on 1/21/2014, 6:43 AM
>>>> I guess the lines are long when a new product is unveiled<<<

Not even then. Those lines are mostly people Apple pays to be in line. It's just a PR/marketing stunt.
Rob Franks wrote on 1/21/2014, 7:28 AM
"Not even then. Those lines are mostly people Apple pays to be in line. It's just a PR/marketing stunt. "
Funny. That never occurred to me. I guess I thought Apple was beyond that but obviously not. A bit of googling turns up a fight of all things, with some homeless people over a dispute in pay from "a businessman" for standing in line.

There are others as well. No DIRECT link to Apple mind you, but I can't think of who else would pay for such a thing. Pretty greasy and pathetic though either way.

riredale wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:57 AM
I view handing my CC to a server as a convenience to me, meaning that I don't have to stand in line when leaving. There is only one place where the servers decline to run the bill over to the register, and I assume they have that rule because it slows them down (It's an extremely busy place).

As for the USA and the Dark Ages:

--self-checkout in the big-box stores and many supermarkets

--utility bills via automatic deduction, so I never tried doing it online

--smartphone check deposit, yup

--CC and debit cards accepted pretty much everywhere.


I can easily transfer money from one account to another within the same bank. I can easily transfer money from bank to bank but it takes a day or so to clear unless I am willing to pay a small fee. Large amounts (>$10K) may require a several-day hold. The bank says this is because there is a lot of "trust" implicit between institutions in the financial industry, and scammers are always trying to find ways to game the system. So, for example, a cashier's check is no longer considered cash, since they can be faked. If you sell your car to someone, tell them to bring cash.
[r]Evolution wrote on 1/21/2014, 2:29 PM
2014 Mac Pro is NOT in the budget at the moment... but I do have my eyes on a 2010 Mac Pro.
Rob Franks wrote on 1/21/2014, 7:39 PM
[i]"As for the USA and the Dark Ages"[/I]

Yeah... I was sort of wondering if the USA was actually that far back into the dark ages... or.....errrr.... just some of its citizens (sorry!)
I guess I have the answer.

I think the only real difference is that debit/interac method of payment has become more of a standard in Canada than in the USA
From Wiki:
" Since its national launch in 1994, Interac Direct Payment has become so widespread that, as of 2001, more transactions in Canada were completed using debit cards than cash."
[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debit_card]

Soooo.... what was this about apple cash registers and if I can't use it at Sobey's then what good is it?!
:)
JohnnyRoy wrote on 1/21/2014, 8:54 PM
> Reply by: riredale "As for the USA and the Dark Ages"

Actually, I was explicitly referring to Credit Cards not other electronic forms of payment. The rest of the world, (e.g., Canada, Europe, etc.) have credit cards with Chips and PIN's. The US still uses 30 year old magnetic strips and signatures (that nobody checks). These are far less secure. Anyone can steal a card and forge the signature that's on it. It's much harder to steal a card and guess the PIN.

If you research the topic you'll find that the primary reason the US hasn't changed yet is the cost to banks which is which I said it's probably cheaper to pay for misuse than to upgrade the system. If you ask the banks they will hide behind the excuse that their customers are use to using a signature and that's how they like it. Pretty lame.

~jr
Chienworks wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:00 PM
Few years back someone in Ontario owed me $20 for hosting his website. I suggested paypal, but he flatly refused because it was too "American". He used some sort of digital money transfer system in Canada, but that system was only open to Canadian citizens so i couldn't access it. He got incensed when i told him and took it that i was simply refusing to use something Canadian, so he withdrew the transfer, and said he'd look for a real webhost that didn't hate his beloved country.

OK, that had very little to do with anything, and his attitude was unrealistic and counter-productive. Still though, i guess i related it because it shows that online money systems are still not universal.

Oh, and he doesn't use a Mac Pro either. There, back on topic!
Chienworks wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:04 PM
"The US still uses 30 year old magnetic strips and signatures (that nobody checks). These are far less secure. Anyone can steal a card and forge the signature that's on it. It's much harder to steal a card and guess the PIN."

Are you saying that credit card transactions in other countries require PINs? Here in the US PINs are only used for debit transactions. But, i still don't see that mag stripe vs. chip has anything to do with this. PINs can be implemented with mag strip credit card purchases just as easily, as evidenced by the fact that we do have that for debit. You don't *need* a chip for that.

I do agree though that the signature is a poor method.
JohnnyRoy wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:13 PM
> Posted by: Chienworks "But, i still don't see that mag stripe vs. chip has anything to do with this."

The chip makes your stolen credit card a lot harder to copy. Thieves have pretty much master making copies of mag strips. They have mag card writers with stacks of blank mag cards and copy your data into them and sell them. Chips are harder to duplicate and thus more secure until thieves figure out how to copy them.

Also, if you travel to Europe, you may encounter chip readers that don't support mag stripes which means you can't use your credit card at that particular establishment unless someone is willing to copy your information onto a piece of paper (which is really secure) NOT!

~jr
Chienworks wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:35 PM
True enough. But if the argument against using PINs for credit transactions is the lack of a chip, it's an invalid argument. It could be easily implemented with very minor software changes and still keep on using the same cards everyone already has in their wallets.

Heck, all the cards in my wallet are both "credit" and debit. If i swipe them as credit, the charge actually does go through Visa, requires a signature rather than a PIN, and shows up in my account as a credit charge. The only difference between that and an actual "credit" card is that Visa then charges my bank immediately and is paid within a few hours, rather than maintaining a credit balance for me. To change this system to use PINs instead of signatures would be near trivial.
Rob Franks wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:39 PM
"OK, that had very little to do with anything, and his attitude was unrealistic and counter-productive. Still though, i guess i related it because it shows that online money systems are still not universal."

LOL!
Well.. even though a bit counter productive, I can understand his frustration. The last American I spoke to wanted to know who our PRESIDENT was right now. (We have a Prime Minister, not a President). I view American news almost every night before I watch the Canadian news, but how many Americans watch the Canadian news first in USA.... err... do you even get Canadian stations in the USA?

Annnyway...


"Are you saying that credit card transactions in other countries require PINs? Here in the US PINs are only used for debit transactions"
YES. (In Canada anyway)
A credit card is handled exactly the same way as a debit card now. The machines in fact are one and the same. You insert (chip first) what ever card you wish to use. The machine senses the card type (Debit, visa, master card... etc), then asks for your pin.
Chienworks wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:49 PM
They're all the same single card reader machines here too, and every one accepts both credit & debit. Unfortunately they don't sense the type automatically. Some of them have buttons for "payment type", Credit/Debit/EBT/ATM,etc. while others the cashier will ask. There are a very few that process debit cards as a credit purchase no matter what the card is. It's probably been over 10 years since i've seen a card reader that didn't accept all kinds.

I stopped at a gas station in the wild northern wilderness of New York a month ago that actually still uses those mechanical card swipers with the carbon paper receipts. The owner said he'll have to upgrade as many of his regular customers are now getting cards that don't have raised digits anymore. At the moment he's now writing the number on the receipt by hand, but his bank has said they will stop accepting that soon.

I suppose there are some Canadian stations available in the US. I wouldn't know as i've got a below-basic cable package and only get about a dozen channels.
Rob Franks wrote on 1/21/2014, 9:54 PM
"Also, if you travel to Europe, you may encounter chip readers that don't support mag stripes which means you can't use your credit card at that particular establishment unless someone is willing to copy your information onto a piece of paper (which is really secure) NOT!"

Not sure about Europe, but the machines here in Canada can do BOTH the mag strips and the chips.
ushere wrote on 1/22/2014, 12:58 AM
ditto aus.....
GeeBax wrote on 1/22/2014, 2:04 AM
And it was announced on the news this evening here in Australia that signatures will not longer be used with credit/debit cards. I was also advised by my bank that all credit card transactions must now include the 3 digit security number.

However there is nowhere near enough in my account to buy a New Mac Pro.....