Square Reader FAQ
Review common questions about the Square Reader.
When will I receive my Square Reader?
Once you place an order via Square Shop, your reader will arrive in 2 to 7 business days. You can also opt-in for paid expedited shipping where your order will arrive within 1 to 3 business days. When your reader is shipped, you’ll receive an email with tracking information, which you can use to follow your order.
How do I return my reader or order a replacement?
You can return your Square Reader within 30 days of the purchase date. If your reader isn’t working properly, and you’ve tried the troubleshooting tips, you can submit a warranty claim to receive a replacement. Make sure to review our warranty and return policy before getting started.
Where can I find general information about this reader?
You can read a product overview, find tech specs, and pricing info from the Square Reader page.
What devices can I use with the contactless and chip reader?
You can use most Apple iOS devices and many Android devices with built-in Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). Check if your device is supported.
What types of payments can I accept?
The Square Reader accepts chip cards (EMV) and contactless (NFC) payments such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, and contactless cards.
How do I pair the reader to my mobile device?
Learn how to pair your reader and get set up.
I’m having trouble with my reader. Where can I get help?
Review these troubleshooting tips – they solve the most common issues people have with the reader.
How much does the Square Reader cost?
The reader is a once-off cost of $59.
Can I purchase a reader in a retail store?
You can buy a Square Reader from a retail store. We suggest you contact your nearest retail location prior to visiting to ensure they have Square hardware in stock.
Are discounts offered for the reader?
At the moment, discounts aren’t available for the reader, but you can pay for the reader in instalments instead of a one-time charge with Square’s hardware instalment plan. Learn more about the installment plan.
Device Compatibility Questions
My device doesn’t support BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy). Can I use the reader?
Devices without BLE aren’t currently supported with the reader.
What if I already have a Square magstripe reader?
You can continue to use your magstripe reader, but you won’t be able to use the Square Reader at the same time, as they don’t work together. To process magstripe cards, you can use the Square magstripe reader alongside your Square Reader. Note: The magstripe reader no longer comes with the Square Reader and is not sold separately.
Can I connect my reader to multiple devices at the same time?
The reader can be used with multiple devices, but it only connects with one device at a time. To connect your reader to another device, make sure to disconnect it from its current device. To do so, visit your in-app Settings > tap Square Reader > select your reader from the list > tap Forget this Reader twice to confirm.
You can also disconnect the reader by holding down the button on the reader for approximately 20 seconds, until you see solid red lights.
Can I use this reader if my business is mobile?
Yes, just make sure you have a strong Wi-Fi or mobile data connection to process payments and that your reader is fully charged before use.
Is there a dock or stand for the reader?
Yes! Check out the Dock for Square Reader.
Can I use any USB cable to charge the reader?
Yes, you can use any standard micro-USB to USB cable, but the reader comes with one for this purpose. While we can only guarantee that our charger is supported, many sellers have had success charging with other cables.
Settings and Pairing Questions
How do I connect the reader to my mobile device?
You can connect your reader wirelessly or by using the included dock to plug directly into the hardware hub of the Square Stand. Keep in mind your device needs to have a strong internet connection to pair your reader and you are unable to use your reader offline.
How do I connect my reader to a new device?
You can connect your reader to any compatible device that supports BLE bluetooth connections. Remember, you’ll need to forget the reader from your old device before you attempt to pair your reader with a new device. If you have any trouble connecting your reader to a new device, check out our troubleshooting steps.
I’d like to connect my reader to the hardware hub of my Square Stand, but the three USB hubs are being used by other devices. Can I use a splitter?
We don’t officially support splitters or third-party USB hubs. We recommend connecting the reader wirelessly to your iPad via Bluetooth LE.
How do I turn the reader on and off?
To power it on, push the button on the reader. Once it’s on, you don’t need to worry about turning off the reader. The reader will automatically go into sleep mode when not in use after 2 hours to save battery.
What do the lights mean?
The four LED lights displayed on your reader will tell you all you need to know about your reader, check out the guide below:
Connecting your reader
|Four orange lights flashing||Reader is in pairing mode|
|Four green lights||Reader has successfully paired|
|Four red lights||Reader failed to pair|
Accepting a payment
|One green light||Reader is ready to take a payment|
|Moving green lights||Reader is processing a payment|
|Four green lights||Payment was accepted|
|Four red lights||Payment was declined|
Note: If you don’t see one green light to initiate a payment after 30 seconds, please tap “Re-enable Apple Pay and Contactless” in the app.
Checking your battery
|Four green lights||Battery is fully charged|
|Three green lights||Battery is 75% charged|
|Two green lights||Battery 50% charged|
|One solid red light||Battery 25% charged|
|One blinking red light||Battery is low and charge immediately|
If your reader is completely out of battery, you will see two scrolling red lights when you reconnect your reader to power and it initiates charging.
Charging and Battery Questions
How do I charge the reader and how long will it take to charge?
You can charge the reader by connecting the included USB cable to any power source. Charging will take roughly 2-3 hours, but this will vary depending on your power source.
How long will the battery last?
Battery life will vary depending on usage, but the reader should stay powered through a full day of sales.
How do I check the battery level of my reader?
Learn how to check your reader’s battery level.
How do I take a contactless payment?
It’s easy! Watch this video to learn how:
What are contactless payments, and how are they different from NFC?
Contactless payments describe the act of paying without touching anything. NFC (Near-Field Communications) is a technology that allows for contactless payments. Using radio frequency, NFC allows devices (e.g. smartphones) to wirelessly communicate at close range to do things like process payments. Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay are both forms of NFC and types of contactless payments.
Are contactless payments secure?
Yes, they’re just as secure as accepting chip cards. In some cases because of additional verification methods (like Touch ID with Apple Pay), contactless payments can be even more secure. Learn more in Square’s comprehensive guide to Apple Pay.
How long does it take to process a chip card?
Chip card payments require additional security steps to transfer and verify chip data. It can take around 6-7 seconds to complete a chip card transaction when it’s inserted into the reader’s EMV card slot.
Do I leave the chip card in the reader’s chip card slot while taking a payment?
Yes, you’ll need to leave the chip card in the reader until the transaction is complete. You’ll get a confirmation message in the app and see 4 green lights on your reader when it’s time to remove the card.
Can I take test contactless payments with the reader?
Not currently, but you can practice taking contactless payments by completing a $1 sale and immediately processing a refund.
Can I use the reader while my mobile device is connected to other Bluetooth devices?
Yes, you can connect to other devices without impacting your connection to the Square Reader.