Mobile and Wireless Card Machines

By Rob Binns | Senior Writer

This article will give you an overview of the different wireless card machines available in the UK, and provide some of the most popular models on the market today.

What is a Wireless Card Machine?

Wireless card machines allow businesses to take card payments, without the restriction of static models. This can be useful for restaurants, bars and any outdoor vendors such as markets and festivals. Even taxi cab companies can now benefit from having a portable card machine. It allows for payments on the go and diminishes the risk of lost sales due to accepting solely cash.

The Leading Wireless Card Machines

Barclays1-2-1Portable & mobile + contactless payments + 700 transactions on a single charge
EthnetMPT510 – Wi-Fi PDQBattery-based + web-based reporting programme
EthnetMPT500 GRSConnects via Vodafone SIM card + Bluetooth integration
CardsaveMobile IWL25Lightweight design + 650 transactions per charge
IngenicoEFT 930GContactless payments
IngenicoBluetooth iWL220Bluetooth integration + cheaper model for flexibility indoors
Worldpay/IngenicoPortable iWL250Contactless payment + fastest printer in any payment device

Benefits of Wireless Card Machines

Wireless card machines are a valuable asset for businesses in today's evolving payment market. They offer flexible options, allowing retailers to take payments from any location, unrestricted by wires or the need to be connected to a telephone line.

Wireless PDQ machines have a number of benefits for businesses, with one of the most important being the ability to process payments without a landline or wired internet connection. A portable PDQ terminal delivers the same secure payment facilities as a static machine but without the hassle of a wired connection.

Being able to process payments anywhere is ideal for businesses without a fixed location, who need to be able to take payments on the move and for those who operate at events, markets and conferences etc.

Amongst the businesses who can benefit the most from wireless card machines are restaurants, shops, hairdressers and beauty salons, builders, plumbers to give their customers more flexible payment options.

wireless card machine

Best Wireless Card Machines

1-2-1 Mobile GPRS Terminal

Offered by Barclays, the 1-2-1 Mobile GPRS Terminal is feature packed to make processing payments easier for businesses, including the latest contactless payment features to process payments of up to £30 in an instant.

Featuring a roaming sim card that allows payments to be processed anywhere, a single charge can process up to 700 transactions and it only takes an hour to recharge. Accepting all major card types, it is a great all-round machine. Prices can be obtained directly from Barclays.

MPT510-Wi-fi PDQ


Distributed through Ethnet it is is a great option for all traders and businesses where flexible payment is a priority. The battery-based module has been designed to deliver complete mobility for the processing of sales transactions and offers excellent functionality in any location which can provide a wireless broadband capability.

It has a raft of effective features including the ability to provide either integrated or standalone application to best suit user requirements, full access to a web-based transaction reporting programme if needed and secure PIN entry with Chip and PIN verification as standard.

To ensure the delivery of speedy transactions, the terminal is very easy to use with a simple printer re-load operation and a charging dock which will guarantee that the machine is always ready to process transactions.


Sharing many of the same features as the MPT510, this terminal can be used in any location which has the provision of mobile phone coverage. The processing of transactions is completed over a secure line with connection through a Vodaphone Sim card, providing the operator with total flexibility and mobility to trade in the most remote locations.

In addition to a fully certified Chip and PIN facility and secure PED (PIN entry device) the MPT500 also features a 32 bit ARM processor and has the option of Bluetooth integration for PDA integration. The user also has the flexibility of choosing from a number of mobile network providers to supply the services for the operation. As with its companion device; the MPT500 has been constructed to provide an ergonomically designed, lightweight device which is easily portable and suitable for use in any location.

Mobile iWL25

The CardSave Mobile IWL251 allows easy processing on the move or in store, with a lightweight design and powerful battery capable of processing up to 650 transactions a charge. It has the latest processing technology to ensure fast payments and supports chip and pin payments from all major debit and credit card providers.

Easy to use for both the customer and the owner, it is a great, flexible payment machine. Quotes for machines can be obtained from CardSave.

Ingenico EFT 930G

A popularly used model by Ingenico, the EFT 930g is a state of the art model which offers contactless technology as well as standard chip and pin payments.

Giving businesses flexible options for accepting payments, the Ingenico EFT 930g accepts a wide range of credit cards and features in built security to protect your business and your customers. Quotes are available from Ingenico as well as from specialist PDQ hire companies.

Ingenico Bluetooth iWL220

Whilst this model can’t offer you complete wireless connection access from wherever and whenever, it can use Bluetooth access in order to free you from wires and give you more mobility in your location.

Providing businesses with the ability to take payments to their customers rather than having to set up at a till, it is an ideal model for businesses such as bars and restaurants looking for easier payment solutions. Fees vary according to rental agreements.

Worldpay/Ingenico Portable iWL250

Worldpay / Ingenico’s own mobile payment system offers flexible solutions for businesses, using mobile network coverage to take payments anywhere.

Using chip and pin and contactless technology, the terminal can process 650 transactions a charge and processes payments from all major card providers. Easy to use, with set up and maintenance included, quotes can be obtained from Worldpay direct.

The products reviewed above are just a selection of the available wireless card machines offered by providers as well as merchant account providers.

Purchase and Maintenance Costs

All traders who want to benefit from the flexible sales potential offered by using a mobile or portable PDQ terminal must ensure that they have a registered Merchant Account which should be secured through their bank. The average fee is currently in the range of £100-£150 and will take 4-6 weeks to process.

Get Merchant Account Quotes Tailored To Your Business – Start Here

What type of merchant account do you need?

Prices for wireless machines vary by supplier and features required. Generally speaking prices start at £500 to buy or rental rates starting at around £20 per month per terminal.

For traders who require a terminal for a short period of time, some models can be hired for a minimum of 3 days at costs starting from £75.00 + VAT. A fully refundable deposit of £250.00 is also requested with additional delivery and configuration fees applying.

Choosing the right portable card machine for your small business is essential to ensure that you get the best value for your investment and choose a product which works well for your business.

Rob Binns Expert Market
Rob Binns Senior Writer

Rob writes mainly about the payments industry, but also brings industry-specific knowledge of CRM software, social media monitoring, and invoice finance. When not exasperating his editor with bad puns, he can be found relaxing in a sunny corner, with a beer and a battered copy of Dostoevsky.

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