Plus you have to get through the hoops of the credit card processor vetting process and buy specialized (read: pricey) equipment.For some small businesses, this option is just not practical. That’s why we’re here: to help you understand all the intricacies of taking credit card payments with your smartphone or tablet.Credit card processing companies collect small fees from merchants for processing payments.

I finally upgraded from my Windows Phones to an Android device, so it’s ceased to be an issue for me, but it’s not just Windows that you have to worry about.

There are certain smartphones and tablets running both i OS and Android that can’t be used with these card readers, which means you’re going to have to upgrade your device — something that will cost you anywhere between $500 and $1,000 if you get a new flagship device, which is more than most small businesses want to shell out just to give something a try.

Cell signal in these places is also hit-or-miss, and the best carriers vary by region.

Most smartphones these days are capable of becoming Wi-Fi hotspots, so you can create your own Wi-Fi.

So, unsurprisingly, credit card processing is a must for any business that wants to thrive in today’s market where even Girl Scouts take card payments.

However, a credit card terminal, merchant account, and payment gateway can be a pain to deal with, and expensive too.

A friend of mine owns an arts and crafts business and uses Pay Pal Here to accept credit card payments when she’s at conventions and other events.

There’s a pub right by my house that gives its servers credit card swipers rather than having to pay for everything at the bar.

Thanks to mobile payment companies, these days you can turn your smartphone or tablet into a credit card swiper. If you want to cut to the chase, check out our mobile credit card processing comparison chart to see the best option side-by-side.

Or, if you think you need a more robust solution for your larger business, take a look at our merchant account comparison chart. Credit card readers are useful in a variety of industries and for businesses of all sizes.

However, this option relies on your phone’s data plan.