Theatermania: Integrating with Magtek Card Reader
Softjourn

Theatermania: Integrating with Magtek Reader

March 21, 2018
TheaterMania
TheaterMania

Founded in 1999, TheaterMania connects the theater and performing arts industry with a mass consumer audience, comprehensive listings, news, reviews, features, interviews, and video content covering live theater and the performing arts across the United States and in London.

Background

Total card payments value reached almost 6 trillion U.S. dollars in 20161 and is continuously growing. According to ReportLinker2, card payments value will exceed 7.3 trillion U.S. dollars in 2020. The growth of card transaction volume is significant comparing with Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) withdrawals and checks (Fig. 1). It’s not surprising that card information is a highly attractive target for those engaged in fraud. Companies whose services include card data processing are now paying heightened attention to some new ways of guaranteeing greater security of sensitive data.

Figure 1 Growth in Volume by Payment Type. US 2016–2017, Source: Business Insider Intelligence

The Need

Softjourn’s client, TheaterMania (in 2017 acquired by AudienceView), connects theaters and performing arts with a mass consumer audience that often sells tickets via bank cards. When they turned to us, their ticketing service, OvationTix, already offered great functionality, including the option of selling tickets at the door. However, they were looking to add to their set of services the ability to process credit cards on mobile devices – the capability which they didn’t previously have. TheaterMania.com decided to launch a mobile application with an embedded browser component and integrate it with a MagTek mobile card reader—and that’s how the collaboration started!

The Solution

Based on our knowledge and experience in these domains and technologies, we were able to assist TheaterMania in integrating their ticket selling solution with a MagTek card reader.

The first step in the service integration with the MagTek device was to wrap the OvationTix website into a mobile view, so the system could display and function in the same way as the original website on all mobile devices, especially on iOS and Android tablets. The principle is simple: the manager launches the OvationTix system on a mobile device via a special browser and sells theater tickets at offsite events or anywhere outside of their normal venue quickly scanning the attendee’s magnetic card chips, saving considerable time versus manual entry.

TheaterMania decided to go ahead with a MagTek uDynamo card reader, which can be attached to mobile devices through an audio jack. They chose this device because it works across a wide range of mobile devices and allows for 1,000,000 swipes over the device’s lifetime. Another important reason for using MagTek was the security feature of having the card data encrypted within the hardware device and passing the encrypted data directly to the payment gateway.

Although Softjourn’s team had developed quite a few bank card scanning solutions in the past, we hadn’t had a chance to work with this particular device before. After some research and a review of user-guide documentation, we were able to integrate the system with MagTek and even added a few options: warnings about scanner battery level (when there is 30% or less left), a custom error page in case there is no Internet connection and the option to “swipe to reload.”

It was Softjourn`s first experience integrating MagTek device with the mobile scanning solution and it`s a great feeling to see the value which OvationTix system can now bring to their customers! It`s also a great feeling to be a part of that team!

Lyubomyr N., PM at Softjourn  

1Fed (2017). The Federal Reserve Payments Study – 2017 Annual Supplement [Report].
2ReportLinker (2018). Card Payments in the US, Forecast 2016–2020 [Data].

Partnership & Recognition

Top 100
Intix
Microsoft Gold Partner
Xamarin
Monax
Inc 5000

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