Many retailers today are looking at using cloud based solutions for their POS software. It is actually our favourite solution from large retailers, and we have installed a few such sites, for small to medium-sized businesses. We can do it, but we do not recommend it.
Since we have a lot experience in the cloud, let me explain as any system you adopt including cloud will have it own strengths and weaknesses.
The big problem in the cloud is the user experiences an occasional slow downs and stoppages. Since it is not regular its hard to track down because everything works fine until it does not.
Most likely its the Internet, as a cloud depends on having a top-quality Internet connection which adds to your cost. What Optus suggests for good reason that every cloud user have in addition an emergency backup that goes through the mobile network, the cost of this is about $25 to $45/month per site. Then if the Internet goes down; the mobile network takes over. Otherwise, what will happen is that you will occasionally experience these sudden slow-downs and short stoppages due to problems with the Internet.
The next problem is the hosting. If it's in the cloud, then its not your computer, if the hosting is causing a problem, you have to ring them up, and the hosting company has to check, which takes time. What the hosting company will probably do is say its your Internet connection, your computer, your router, your setup, etc. Then if you convince them its not and they cannot fix it what often they will do is reboot that hosting computer, this is not recommended in point of sale software.
The other problem which we have had with hosting is that the hosting company works to its own agenda. Suddenly, they say we are upgrading your hosting computers, and they have checked and there will be not a problem with you. Subsequently they upgrade and sometimes you go down. Then they then claim, well we are sure you understand, the need for the upgrade. The problem was of course unavoidable as the upgrade had to happen sooner or later.
Lastly with us you own the software in your shop, you can run our software as long as you want AS IS. We have people still using our DOS system version L, which is 27 years old. With cloud based system, the cloud hosting company will run your retail software are long as its profitable. Once the number of users drops off, soon you will get a message from the hosting company to say that you need to upgrade, and all support for your software will stop on this date. Whether you want the upgrade or not on that date, your system stops without an upgrade.
Finally let me say with us, if you want cloud based we have it and it works.