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At the time of this writing, it does not appear that First Data has any plans to discontinue the Clover Mobile, which seems to perform the same functions as the Flex and is likewise portable. However, the Flex is a little smaller, with a 5” screen and weighing in at just one pound.
In this Clover Flex review, we’ll go over the features and specifications, costs, and differences between the Flex and other Clover devices.
The Clover Flex is somewhere between a countertop credit card terminal and a POS system. The core function is payment acceptance, allowing you to take credit and debit cards or contactless payments. You can use the terminal at a fixed location, carry it with you for line-busting, or bring it to a dining table for a tableside payment. The touchscreen display lets customers sign for purchases right on the device.
In addition to payments, the Flex offers inventory management, barcode scanning with built-in scanner, and receipt printing with the built-in printer. First Data offers this video introducing the Flex:
The Flex integrates with other Clover devices, so you can use it in conjunction with a stationary system if you’d like.
It’s true that the Clover family includes three different small credit card terminals (in addition to the smartphone/tablet reader and the full Clover Station POS system) so it may seem a little confusing trying to choose the right one. The Clover Mini is the largest and heaviest of the three small systems, as is not intended to be portable. The Mini is designed as a smaller footprint POS system and can be wall-mounted.
The Clover Mobile is closest to the Flex, as it’s designed for portability and includes many of the same features. The primary difference between the Flex and the Mobile is the built-in printer offered with the Flex. While the Mobile can connect to the Bluetooth-capable Clover printer, it’s not included and not built in to the Mobile device. Another difference is the access to the App market. Not all apps can be added to the Clover Flex.
All three models can accept traditional magnetic stripe cards, EMV chip cards, and contactless (NFC) technologies like Apple Pay. Additionally, all three can be customized with apps available through the Clover App Market.
This chart shows how the three models compare:
The full Clover Station offers store and forward, and the Mini, Mobile, and Flex are able to accept transactions when offline if you’ve enabled offline transactions. The Flex does not have the ability to connect to a kitchen printer, so if that’s important to you, you’ll want to consider another model.
Costs to purchase the Clover Flex vary depending on where you buy it, but the machine starts around $400. That is just the purchase price – you will also pay a processing fee for each transaction you accept. Processing fees are set by the credit card processing company that you work with for your business.
Additionally, Clover devices are required to use First Data’s TransArmor security suite, which typically adds a monthly fee of $19.95. You also need to purchase a software plan. Software plans start at $9/month. Details of what’s included in the plans can be found in the screenschot below.
If you want even more details on what's included and how to choose the right fit, check out our article on choosing a Clover software plan.
You can get a free quote for your cost to purchase and use the Clover Flex here at CardFellow. Get started.
TSYS Merchant Solutions answer:
We don't support this device and not able to answer your question.
Dharma Merchant Services answer:
No, these devices are "tied" to the provider who sold them unfortunately. So if you leave Wells, your Flex will not be able to be reused somewhere else :(
I own a busy food truck outside Boston where people tend to move quickly. I switched from my old card reader to the Clover Flex after I friend showed me his and how fast it worked. The only downfall is it wont work if there’s no WiFi or cellphone service. Thumbs up!!
I have used Flex few times (my monthly guest artist brings to use for his transactions), Fast processing, great looking, haven't had any problems nor had to make clients wait for transaction to go through, it's almost instant.
Sent initial machine with wrong password for set up. Couldn't be fixed over the phone so I had to pay to ship it back. Received new machine and set up was pretty easy. Processed 4 transactions and the machine flat out died! Waiting until morning to call support staff which I know from previous experience is a long, drawn out ordeal. So disappointed in Clover. Avoid!!
Processes payments offline even though I pay for a cell network. So if someone gets declined I won't know til 4am the next day. My ATT service I pay for hardly ever stays connected. It takes 6:30 to turn on after it randomly turns itself on multiple times throughout the work day. Sometimes freezes on the "processing" screen causing reboot while customers wait. Receipts print 50% of the time it fails and has to be opened and repositioned. It's 2018 and their App Store has no messaging apps. The scheduling apps are archaic. All in all, this device will embarrass you in front of your customers every day.
The Clover Flex is somewhere between a countertop terminal and a POS system, offering portability and features in a small package.