A recent article in the Boston Globe describes the growing uses for vending machines that card payments are enabling. As machines are equipped to process credit and debit transactions, the move from under-$1 items to higher priced items opens up. In one trial, Staples is deploying machines that sell office supplies (e.g. power cords, computer mice, pens) in airports and on college campuses. I spoke with Jim Turner of USA Technogolgies at the NACAS conference last year and he mentioned that they were investigating integration of campus card systems into their credit card accepting vending devices. This potential to sell items from supplies to food and video rentals to CDs on campus could open many new opportunities.
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