Global: Existing POS Systems Can Support Digital Pound, Says Bank of England

Existing POS Systems Can Support Digital Pound, Says Bank of England
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The Bank of England (BoE) has announced that existing point-of-sale (POS) terminals in the UK could be utilized to process digital pound payments, according to recent research conducted by the central bank.

This year, the BoE progressed from the research and exploration phase of its digital pound initiative to the design phase, focusing on practical implementation. The UK has determined that any potential central bank digital currency (CBDC) must be viable for everyday in-store transactions. Consequently, the BoE conducted a feasibility study to assess whether current POS systems could facilitate digital pound payments, thereby sparing merchants the expense of acquiring new hardware.

The study revealed that existing POS terminals in the UK could, in principle, handle online digital pound transactions. Additionally, researchers discovered that enabling offline payments using current POS systems is technically feasible, though it would require some modifications.

Specifically, to support offline payments, POS terminals might need an application update to store offline balances. This update would allow the terminals to process transactions even when not connected to the internet, ensuring seamless functionality for both online and offline payments.

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