Kiosk iPad App FAQ

iPad Kiosk App FAQ

Zen Planner’s Kiosk App for Fitness Business Owners provides our customers with a self-service kiosk for their front office operations. It includes self-service workflows, designed for a student to use with little or no need for a staff member to walk them through the functionality. 

Why an App?

  • Why was the app developed for the iPad (instead of other platforms)?
    • Our customers are constantly on the go – running their daily operations from a tablet all the time. Of those using a tablet, the overwhelming majority is using iPads over other tablets on the market, so focusing on an iPad app was an obvious choice. Its big screen (vs a phone) is made for two people interacting together, and is a very effective platform for member self-service. We’re also able to leverage all kinds of integrated technology, such as the camera for taking student photos and scanning barcodes, plug-in encrypted card readers to securely collect credit card information, and the touch screen for digital signatures.
  • Can I use the app on my Android tablet, iPhone, or Mac computer?
    • The app was designed specifically for an iPad, and leverages native tablet iOS functionality. As a result, it can only be used on an iPad. At this time, we do not have plans to develop a Kiosk app for other platforms.
  • How does this change my experience in the Zen Planner Studio web app?
    • There is no change to your Studio experience on the iPad. You will continue to use Studio via a web browser on your iPad. We know our customers use Zen Planner in a number of different ways and we work hard to make them successful in each of those platforms. We’re pleased to introduce the Zen Planner App as an additional (not replacement) product for our customers.
  • What does it do?
    • Before we decided what capability to develop for our iPad app, we surveyed numerous Zen Planner customers to understand what they and their staff most commonly wanted to be able to do while on a tablet device. The results were overwhelming with the top three actions being;
      1. checking students into class,
      2. registering new students, and
      3. processing on-site retail transactions.
    • See the “what does it do” section for more information.


Who is the app for?

  • Can my members download the app?
    • An approved staff login to Zen Planner is required to launch the app. Your members will not be able to run the app. We are planning on developing a member app soon.
  • Can I download the app onto multiple iPads?
    • You can download the app onto as many iPads as you would like. Many customers choose to have multiple iPads running the Kiosk App, to make it easier for students to check into class during busy times, or to make one available for self-service while another can be used when working directly with a new student for registration. The app is easily configurable for these different usage scenarios.
  • Can my staff download the app for home use?
    • The app is designed to be available to your students when they enter your facility. When your staff are working from home (such as to manage member profiles and classes), they will continue to use a web browser, such as Safari or Chrome, even when using an iPad at home.


How does Check In Work?

  • Can students check in to class?
    • Students can check themselves into class once they’ve been entered into your database. It’s simple – they simply identify themselves (either through your business-issued barcode or by name), then select their class, and they’re done.
  • How is checking into class on the app different than through the web Attendance Kiosk or Faceboard?
    • Checking into the app is similar to the Attendance Kiosk (students look themselves up in the system then select their class), with the addition of being able to look up non-active students (such as for drop ins or expired membership renewals). Your students will find the experience of checking in through the app to be even more engaging and interactive. Additionally, if there is a digital signature blocking alert on their profile, checking in through the app allows them to easily sign the waiver when checking in. Checking in through the Faceboard is a little different – you select the class first, then students identify themselves when they arrive. The Faceboard is recommended for checking in when using a big screen setup, such as when using Premium Workout Tracking.
  • Can I sell drop-ins through the app?
    • The app allows for drop-ins for both brand new students as well as students who have visited your business in the past. Additionally, your existing member drop-in is processed through our self-service retail kiosk, allowing your customers to easily add a retail item at the time of purchase (if you have enabled our self-service retail kiosk). Existing members can even pay for their drop-in with an account on file.
  • I don’t track attendance now – why should I start?
    • Tracking attendance is a great way to keep your pulse on which classes and times are working for your students, and which aren’t. It also helps you identify whether you’re selling the right level of access to your members, and know when to charge for drop-in or overage fees. Learn more about the benefits of tracking attendance here:


Can I Sell Memberships?

  • Can students purchase memberships through the app?
    • Brand new students (who do not yet exist in your database) can register for a membership, event or free trial/drop in directly through the app. Your existing students (including those with expired memberships) and prospects can sign up for memberships, events, and drop-ins through the app.
  • I need to collect specific information – can I customize the membership form?
    • You can add your own custom fields to the personal information section of the registration process, and use that information in your waivers and contracts.
  • What if my new member is a minor?
    • The app automatically checks to see if a new member is younger than 18, and then asks for guardian contact information. The guardian is expected to sign the waivers and contracts on behalf of the minor.
  • I discount memberships for certain customers. Can I do that through the app?
    • Because the app was designed for self service, there currently isn’t a way to apply discounts. You can set up discounted memberships to be applied if you’d like (common discounted memberships include student, senior and military discounts), or process those purchases as usual through Studio.
  • I have a great paper form for registration that looks just the way I want it. Why should I use the app instead?
    • By using the kiosk app for new membership purchases, you can collect all the information you need (it’s fully customizable), attach a photo, gather digital signatures and payment, all without having to manually re-enter anything. It’s quicker for a new member to enter their own information, and simpler for your staff as well.


Can I Sell Retail?

  • Can I sell retail through the app?
    • Your students can purchase retail items through our self-service retail kiosk functionality. If they know their Member Connect login, they can easily pay with an account on file. If not, there’s an easy swipe or manual entry option for credit card payments.
  • Does it work with Zen Planner’s inventory management?
    • All “Quick List” retail items are available for purchase in the self-service retail kiosk. When an item is purchased, the inventory for that item is automatically updated, and can be tracked using Zen Planner’s inventory management module.
  • If my drop-in customer also wants to purchase a retail item, is that a separate transaction?
    • With the app, drop in classes are handled like retail items. Before checking out, you can add any self-service retail item to your cart. This makes it easy for you to offer your drop-in customer the option to purchase a bottle of water or one of your custom shirts all in the same transaction.
  • I discount retail for certain customers. Can I do that through the app?
    • Because the app was designed for self service, there currently isn’t a way to apply discounts. You can always apply discounts to retail items purchased through Studio, or add new retail items with discounted prices (which are then available for any customer to purchase).
  • Can my members purchase retail items “on their tab”?
    • With our self-service retail kiosk, all purchases are processed immediately. Your member simply needs to swipe/enter their card or enter their password to select from a card on file, which is sent to your payment processor immediately. At this time, we don’t support delaying payment on an item until the member’s next bill or paying against an existing account balance.
  • I don’t let my members buy retail on their own right now – why would I start?
    • Self-serve retail for small items like water and snacks are a great way to provide your customers with an additional perk, collect additional revenue for your business, and reduce the time your staff spends on processing retail transactions. We have a great blog on this topic:


Does it Manage Digital Signatures?

  • Can my members sign contracts and waivers through the app?
    • We have implemented new universal waiver functionality, allowing you to easily gather signatures on universal documents (those applying to all students at your gym, such as a release of liability or photo release), in addition to digital signatures for membership purchases.
  • What if someone is missing a signature?
    • The app has built-in alerts that show up when your students check in to class. If they’re missing a signature, they can sign the document right in the app – no need to step away or sign offline.


What Technology do I need?

  • What kind of iPad do I need?
    • The Zen Planner kiosk iPad app has been designed to run on the iOS 9 platform. Any iPad running iOS 9 can run the app.
  • Can I use my iPhone or Mac computer?
    • The app was designed specifically for an iPad (the perfect platform for a kiosk), and leverages native tablet iOS functionality. As a result, it can only be used on an iPad.
  • Can I use the app on my iPad Mini?
    • The app has been developed and tested for use on the iPad mini as well as a full sized iPad. Because of the size of the Mini and its camera functionality, we have found that some barcodes are more easily scanned on a full sized iPad. If you heavily use barcodes at your facility, you may want to use a regular iPad.
  • I want to buy an iPad…which one should I buy?
    • When buying a new iPad, we recommend purchasing the most current iPad available so that it will work for your business as long as possible. Right now, that is the iPad Air 2. (If you rely heavily on barcodes, please be aware that regular sized barcodes may have a hard time scanning on the iPad Air 2.  Larger barcodes work well and you can print these from Zen Planner. On some models of the iPad (2, Air 2), we recommend using the back facing camera to capture the barcodes as they are scanned).  If you would like to purchase a Mini (see considerations above) we recommend the iPad Mini 3.
  • What kind of stand or case do I need?
  • Do I have to have WiFi or cellular service to use the app?
    • The app automatically keeps your student list, their memberships and access, and alerts up to date through WiFi or cellular services. Because of this, you must have an active connection in order to use the app.


How do I Process Payments?

  • Do I need to change my payment processor to use the app?
    • You can process payments (via manual card entry) with any of our standard supported payment processors or gateways.
  • I’m based outside of the US – can I still process payments?
    • Absolutely. You can process payments (via manual card entry or on-file accounts) with any of our supported payment processors or gateways.
  • Will I receive Point of Sale rates for transactions processed through the app?
    • Transactions processed using an on-file card (even if it was originally entered via swipe) will continue to receive on-file rates.
  • Can my members pay with a card on file?
    • If your member already has a credit card or bank account on file, they will have the option to pay with that existing account. For security purposes, they will be asked to enter their Member Connect username and password before selecting an on-file account. 



  • Can I personalize the app for my business?
    • Yes! You can select your own custom color within Studio, which is included throughout the app.
  • Can I play music while the app is running?
    • You can play music while running the app.
  • What about everything else I can do in Studio? Manage classes, view member profiles, etc. Can I do that in the app?
    • By overwhelming demand, we have focused specifically on the interaction between you and your students at your front desk. Full Studio functionality (including class and member management, billing, etc) is still available on your iPad via a browser such as Safari or Chrome. We are continually reviewing our mobile strategy based on customer feedback, and plan to add additional features to the app in the future.
  • Can I print from the app?
    • Because of the mobile nature of an iPad, we’re keeping the peripheral technology (such as printers) to a minimum, and relying on electronic forms of communication. Anytime a member provides a digital signature, they’ll get an email with the document. Additionally, we recommend that customers enable automations to send their customers an electronic receipt when they purchase a membership or retail item.
  • Can I still use the web Attendance Kiosk or Faceboard to check students in to class?
    • We will continue to support and enhance both the web Attendance Kiosk and Faceboard for the forseeable future. The web kiosk is a great option for customers who don’t have an iPad or want to offer additional check-in stations without additional equipment. We recommend that customers using Workout Tracking and large screens consider checking students in through the Faceboard and using the Kiosk iPad App for new member registration and self-service retail.
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