Best Buy Tactile POS Press Release

Best Buy

The Best Buy press release posted here is the result of a collaboration among Best Buy and the American Council of the Blind (ACB), the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) and the California Council of the Blind (CCB). Best Buy has agreed to install tactile point of sale devices at all its U.S. stores so that blind people do not have to disclose their PIN when using a debit card.

Structured Negotiations were used to achieve the settlement agreement that lead to the Best Buy press release. Lainey Feingold and Linda Dardarian were the lawyers for the blind organizations.


Best Buy Adds Tactile Keypads to Improve Checkout Experience for Customers with Visual Impairments

Minneapolis, Minn (March 31, 2010)– Best Buy Co., Inc. today announced that it has begun a nationwide initiative to improve the checkout experience for Best Buy customers who are blind or visually impaired. The company has begun to add tactile keypads to point-of-sale devices at Best Buy stores, enabling shoppers who cannot read information on a touch screen to privately and independently enter their personal identification number (PIN) in order to protect their financial privacy.

The announcement was praised by the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB), American Council of the Blind (ACB), California Council of the Blind (CCB).

I congratulate Best Buy, a premier retailer of electronic and entertainment products, for recognizing the privacy and security needs of its customers who are blind or visually-impaired. — Jeff Thom, president of the California Council of the Blind

His thoughts were echoed by Brad Hodges, a blind Best Buy shopper in West Virginia and a technology expert with the American Foundation for the Blind:

Flat screen point of sale devices leave blind customers using a PIN-based payment card at risk for identity theft. Every retailer in the country should follow Best Buy’s example to ensure that customers who are blind or visually impaired can independently enter our PIN and other confidential information when paying for products and services.— Brad Hodges, American Foundation for the Blind

Keys on the device resemble a standard telephone keypad and work in conjunction with Best Buy’s point of sale terminals. All Best Buy stores in California already have the new devices, as do many other stores across the chain. Keypads will be installed in all Best Buy stores nationwide by September 30, 2010.

“We are pleased to collaborate with organizations committed to advocacy for the blind and introduce service enhancements in our stores that will improve the experience for Best Buy’s visually impaired customers,” said Barry Judge, Best Buy executive vice president and chief marketing officer.

About Best Buy Co., Inc.

With operations in the United States, Canada, Europe, China and Mexico, Best Buy is a multinational retailer of technology and entertainment products and services with a commitment to growth and innovation. The Best Buy family of brands and partnerships collectively generates more than $45 billion in annual revenue and includes brands such as Best Buy, Audiovisions, The Carphone Warehouse, Future Shop, Geek Squad, Jiangsu Five Star,Magnolia Audio Video, Napster, Pacific Sales, The Phone House, and Speakeasy. Approximately 155,000 employees apply their talents to help bring the benefits of these brands to life for customers through retail locations, multiple call centers and Web sites, in-home solutions, product delivery and activities in its communities. Community partnership is central to the way business is done at Best Buy. In fiscal 2009, Best Buy donated a combined $33.4 million to improve the vitality of the communities where its employees and customers live and work. For more information about Best Buy, visit www.bestbuy.com.

About American Council of the Blind (ACB) and California Council of the Blind (CCB)

American Council of the Blind is a national consumer-based advocacy organization working on behalf of blind and visually impaired Americans throughout the country, with members organized through seventy state and special interest affiliates. The California Council of the Blind is the California state affiliate of the ACB. ACB and CCB are dedicated to improving the quality of life, equality of opportunity and independence of all people who have visual impairments. Their members and affiliated organizations have a long history of commitment to the advancement of policies and programs, which will enhance independence for people who are blind and visually impaired. More information about ACB and CCB can be found by visiting www.acb.org and www.ccbnet.org.

About American Foundation for the Blind

The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) is a national nonprofit that expands possibilities for people with vision loss. AFB’s priorities include broadening access to technology; elevating the quality of information and tools for the professionals who serve people with vision loss; and promoting independent and healthy living for people with vision loss by providing them and their families with relevant and timely resources. AFB is also proud to house the Helen Keller Archives and honor the over forty years that Helen Keller worked tirelessly with AFB. For more information visit us online at www.afb.org.

Contact for Best Buy: Contact for AFB, ACB and CCB

Best Buy

Susan Busch
(612) 291-6114 or susan [dot] busch [at] bestbuy [dot] com

AFB Communications

Adrianna Montague-Gray
212-502-7675
amontaguegray[at]afb [dot] net

American Council of the Blind

Mitch Pomerantz
626-372-5150
mitch [dot] pomerantz [at] earthlink [dot]net

California Council of the Blind

Jeff Thom
916-995-3967
ccotb [at] ccbnet [dot] org

Simplified Summary

This document is the press release about the legal agreement signed by Best Buy with the American Council of the Blind (ACB), the American Foundation for the Blind, and the California Council of the Blind (CCB). Best Buy agreed to make changes so blind people can pay for things with payment cards and enter their own PIN. Best Buy agreed that payment devices in all Best Buy stores would have keys that a person can feel. Lainey Feingold and Linda Dardarian were the lawyers for the blind community. No lawsuit was filed. Instead, a formal process known as Structured Negotiations was used. [Back to Press Release]