The goal is to allow retailers freedom of choice in the selection of POS peripheral devices by the creation, utilization, and promotion of standardized connectivity. UnifiedPOS is an abstraction standard that contains appendices which provide specific platform implementation information for Microsoft OLE and .NET Windows OS and Java for other OS (Linux) environments.
Developed by a team of joint retailer and industry technical experts following published policies and procedures, NRF-ARTS.org UnifiedPOS provides a consistent and exact framework for programming point of sales devices that is platform-independent and vendor-neutral.
Recent efforts (2010-2011) by the UnifiedPOS committee include provisions for local and remote POS peripheral support through a supplemental Web Services for point of service (WS-POS 1.1) standard. In addition, an increasing focus on using XML language commands to control the POS devices can be seen in the XML-POS Appendix in UnifiedPOS Version 1.13 standard.
The technical committee, composed of both vendors and retailers, modifies the UnifiedPOS specification based on guidance of the Administrative Committee. The technical committee provides support by resolving implementation issues or issues arising from the standard.
OPOS and JavaPOS implementation groups modify or enhance their actual program implementations to conform to the UnifiedPOS specification. The UnifiedPOS technical committee periodically audits the specific implementations to ensure the various groups conform to the UnifiedPOS specification.
In 2003, a .NET implementation was proposed, to the technical committee and subsequently accepted into the standard. This implementation is known as POS for .NET. . Microsoft has been criticized for not keeping up with the current revisions (1.13) to the UPOS standard. POS for .NET version 1.12 is not compatible with the current .NET Framework 4.0. However, On December 13, 2013, Microsoft released POS for .NET 1.14 CTP via Microsoft Connect. POS for .NET 1.14 is intended to conform to UPOS 1.14. The public release of POS for .NET is expected in Spring 2014.
In 2011 effort is underway to create an updated UnifiedPOS 2.0 standard UnifiedPOS. Nrf Arts. Retrieved on 2013-09-27. which will add many enhanced features and functions to support newer programming paradigms and remote XML POS peripheral installation scenarios.