Founding and the early years for MYPOS
A lunch conversation between two friends, Jonathan Cranford and Paul Leach led to the start of what would become MYPOS Connect and all the other services we provide. It was 2001 and Paul Leach, owner of a chain of cafes and bakeries in Worthing, Sussex, UK was telling Jonathan of the problems he faced with his current EPOS system and the lack of support to get the problems fixed. Jonathan offered to go in the next day to look, not knowing anything about EPOS systems but knowing hardware and software felt it would be at the very least interesting.
That next day Jonathan fixed Paul’s issue and had his first crash course into the world of EPOS, kitchen prep printers, cash drawers and receipts. Jonathan was looking for a new venture and after a few days of reflection he felt he could offer Paul a better solution. The plan would be that in the quiet months of January 2002 Paul would switch to Jonathan’s system and would be a suitable first client that could handle any issues that arose. The vision would be to offer a suitable EPOS software package that would be modern and fast.
A couple of weeks of requirements gathering then ensued, followed by the initial plan and design before Jonathan started working on the first MYPOS system with a live date planned for 20th January 2002. Code and testing begun, with regular feedback from Paul and his key managers before the live date.
Evolution of Products and Services
2002 through 2003 saw the first period of rapid development and change to MYPOS. From that first install lessons in multiple stores, stock control issues and table management all arose, and new solutions were required. Credit card systems were totally unintegrated back then and the MYPOS customer base was still predominantly taking cash, and even cheques as payment. Some of the early years included working with cheque printing machines. 2004 to 2005 saw a consolidation of all the changes, support was over dial up modem in many cases, where the customer would typically unplug their fax machine and plug in the modem so a painfully slow dial in was possible.
2006 to 2007 saw the first major change to MYPOS. Version 7 was released to the first client in September 2007 and was the first of our cloud-based offerings. It was not referred to as cloud based then, and the first servers were traditional server PC boxes in our offices in Worthing under a table. Where we now host servers and Azure SQL Server Cloud instances all around the world it makes the sentence above difficult to relate to. With MYPOS7 clients could still also host a SQL server themselves in their own offices and this was preferable to many. This was also our first chance for the cloud version at least to start our first web “portal” where the users could access live data and see reports real time. MYPOS7 in 2006 was when we first started to offer our first integrated credit card systems with companies such as Comms XL.
2008 through 2013 included the expansion in to our first markets abroad. Portugal being the first with a simple two store retail operation and a local server. We now offer MYPOS across twenty-one countries and this looks set to increase in 2024. The Operations team under Chris provides global coverage around the clock.
MYPOS8 officially launched in December 2013. The major change was a move on how we held the local databases for clients in case the cloud was not available. There are many reasons for this from not paying the bills to go old cables becoming unplugged. MYPOS from the very beginning has been written to continue working even if all is not well. Of course you lose certain functionality, such as loyalty point redeeming, when there is no internet, but the core features continue to work.
MYPOS9 was our project to move to Xamarin, but after nearly eighteen months of development we decided to scrap 9 and move in favour to Microsoft .NET MAUI for MYPOS10. By developing in .NET MAUI we now have a unified codebase for efficiency that will take us along for the next part of our journey. In layman’s terms MAUI means we can develop apps that can run on Android, iOS, macOS, and Windows from a single shared codebase. If we make a change for example on how discounts and promotions work, then this translates across MYPOS10 running on an iPad or on Windows. Currently we only target Windows and iOS as our preferred hardware for our end users. MYPOS10 allows a mix of both in any store, and MYPOS10 has been designed to allow store A to run 10 whilst store B is still on version 8.
Today MYPOS10 is our key offering to new clients. We still support MYPOS8 with a large and diverse customer base. The biggest change for both MYPOS8 and 10 is the payment systems and how we integrate with them. Pay By Link software, Click and collect, click and ship, QR payment codes and other forms of remote payment have been a major area of development.