Computerized point of sale is not only quicker and easier but also safer for the consumer. Most items that are purchased nowadays are bar coded and these are simply scanned over a device that will read the bar code and charge the amount into the system. These are totaled at the end of the sale.
The consumer can either pay by cash or credit card. If the payment is made by credit card the money will be deducted from the bank almost immediately.
Before point of sale (POS) systems became computerized, the retailer would enter the prices into a cash register manually.
This whole process was slower and more errors were made in keying in the wrong prices. If paying by cash, mistakes were quite often made and people were sometimes short changed.
Taking payment from a credit card was a lot slower too and fraud was a lot easier to commit. When purchasing goods or services, the credit card was handed over to the retail assistant, placed into a device and an imprint of the card was printed onto a piece of carbonated paper - the paper was then signed by the cardholder and the signature was compared with the signature on the back of the card.
Nothing else was checked, so even if the card had been stolen, was over the limit or in arrears, the sale still was able to go ahead. The transaction was then sent to the bank for processing and all of this could have taken up to 7 -10 days.
Nowadays, with the computerized system in place, the whole process takes minutes and the funds are taken from the bank immediately. The consumer simply places their credit card into a terminal then enters their pin (personal identification number) providing the pin number matches and if there are sufficient available funds, the sale is complete.
The funds will be deducted from the credit limit immediately, so if the card is stolen or over its limit the sale will not go through. Not only is it quicker and easier, it is also much safer.