VeriFone announced PAYware Mobile, a payment solution for the iPhone that brings card processing capabilities to small businesses.

According to the company, PAYware puts “mainstream payment processing capabilities” in the hands of small business merchants who need a mobile card acceptance solution for enterprises such as home repair, small cafes, door-to-door sales, or virtually any other type of business.

The solution includes a PA-DSS approved payment app and a card reader that slips over the iPhone to accommodate card swipes and allow merchants to avoid “card-not-present” fees.

The card reader utilizes a secure magnetic stripe read-head and firmware certified to the Federal Information Processing Standard FIPS 140-2. Card details are immediately encrypted during the card swipe process, meaning no sensitive data ever reaches the payment app, eliminating the possibility of compromise either on the iPhone or when information is transmitted over WiFi or cellular wireless.

Transactions initiated by PAYware Mobile will be managed through VeriFone’s PAYware Mobile secure gateway and routed to one of many credit card processors for authorization and settlement.

VeriFone assures that the combined hardware and software provides “the strongest card payment security available for the iPhone”, including the company’s VeriShield Protect encryption solution as a standard feature.

The solution will be available through existing bank acquirer and ISO channels, as well as direct from VeriFone. The company says they also expect to eventually make PAYware Mobile available wherever mobile phone accessories are sold. Customers who sign up directly with VeriFone without existing merchant accounts will be directed to a “variety of payment processor options”.

The hardware and software solution will begin shipping January 15 and is available free to those who sign up for a PAYware Mobile secure gateway service agreement.

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