Tyl by NatWest Review: Modern Card Machines from a High Street Bank

Tyl by NatWest is a payment provider offering card machines for small businesses. Launched by the British bank NatWest to compete with other card machine solutions, Tyl aims to provide a straightforward and competitive service. But does it stand out from the alternatives? 

Highs: 

  • User-friendly payment terminals 
  • Tailored fees 
  • Next-day payouts 
  • Expandable POS features on Flex 

Lows: 

  • One-year contract lock-in 
  • Non-transparent fees 
  • Hourly (not real-time) reporting portal 
  • No EPOS integration 
  • Limited service 

Best For: 

Businesses already banking with NatWest, looking to streamline payments with one provider. 

Overview 

How It Works 

NatWest, one of the few UK banks with a card machine offering, launched Tyl in 2020. The service includes card payment machines for rent, a virtual terminal, payment links, and an online payment gateway. 

Background 

Developed by the software company Pollinate using Android-based Clover hardware, Tyl was created for NatWest to serve small business payments. NatWest acts as the reseller of this solution. 

Merchants get free access to the Tyl Portal, a browser dashboard to track sales, chargebacks, and more, updated hourly. There is no smartphone app for the portal, only a customer loyalty app for consumers shopping at your store. 

To sign up, businesses and sole traders fill in an online form, receive a call, get a quote, and sign a contract. After processing, which may take a few days, the chosen card machine is delivered within 48 hours. 

Card Machines 

Tyl offers three types of card machines, with the Clover Flex being the standout option. 

Clover Flex 

A portable, touchscreen terminal with built-in POS software, Clover Flex offers: 

  • WiFi and 3G connectivity 
  • 8-hour battery life with fast charging 
  • 5” glass touchscreen 
  • Built-in receipt printer 
  • Access to the Clover App Marketplace for additional apps 

Clover Flex is designed for ease of use, much like a smartphone, with apps for reporting, the register, and receipt editing. Additional features can be added through the Clover App Marketplace, expanding the terminal’s capabilities. 

Ingenico Move/3500 

A more conventional portable machine, available in WiFi or 3G versions, suitable for table service or mobile use. It offers: 

  • WiFi and 3G connectivity 
  • 8-hour battery life with charging base 
  • 3.2-inch backlit display with embossed PIN pad 

Ingenico Desk/3500 

A countertop machine designed for stationary use, requiring a constant power and internet connection via Ethernet. It features: 

  • Built-in receipt printer 
  • 2.8-inch screen 
  • Embossed PIN pad 

All machines accept chip and PIN and contactless payments from Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay. 

Pricing and Contracts 

Despite claiming “no hidden fees,” Tyl’s charges are not publicly disclosed. Costs are obtained by submitting an online contact form and receiving a custom quote. Here’s what we know: 

Service  Monthly Rental (ex. VAT) 
Clover Flex  £15.99 
Ingenico Move 3500 (WiFi)  £19.99 
Ingenico Move 3500 (3G)  £21.99 
Ingenico Desk 3500  £13.99 
Online payments subscription  £14.95 

Transaction fees are customised based on business type and card turnover, with domestic Visa and Mastercard typically being cheaper than Amex. Additional charges may apply for refunds, chargebacks, early contract termination, and certain Clover apps. 

Online Payments 

Tyl offers several online payment options: 

  • Virtual Terminal: The Phone Sale app on Clover Flex allows for manual card payments. A more advanced terminal is available via a browser. 
  • Payment Links: Created through the virtual terminal, links can be sent via email, text, or QR code, directing customers to a payment page. 
  • Online Payment Gateway: Compatible with platforms like WooCommerce, this can be customised to match your branding. 

Customer Service and Reviews 

Tyl offers customer support Monday to Saturday from 8am to midnight and Sundays from 9am to 5pm. Account changes must be handled on weekdays from 9am to 5pm. Despite a promising start, the lack of user reviews and transparent pricing raises concerns. 

Verdict 

NatWest has made a commendable effort with Tyl, offering attractive features like next-day payouts and a versatile Clover Flex terminal. However, the lack of user reviews and non-transparent fees are significant drawbacks. For businesses already banking with NatWest, Tyl could be a convenient choice, but it remains to be seen if the service lives up to its promises.