Home>Square Basics

Set Up the Square Contactless + Chip Card Reader

Below is an overview of the most important parts of your reader:

The location of the power button, chip card reader slot, and LED lights on the Square contactless and chip card reader.

Before setting up your Square contactless and chip card reader, make sure you have a compatible device with the latest version of the Square app.  

For a full overview on setting up your reader, watch this video:

1. Check the Battery of Your Contactless + Chip Reader

For an accurate battery reading, unplug your reader from any power source. 

Firmly press and release the button on the reader. Green lights indicate that you’re charged and ready to go. If you see a single red light, charge up immediately. Once your reader is on, you don’t need to worry about turning it off. It’ll automatically go into sleep mode after 2 hours of inactivity. To wake it up from sleep mode, firmly press and release the button on the side of the reader. 

2. Charge Your Contactless + Chip Reader

Connect one end of the accompanying USB cable to your reader and the other end to a USB port like a mobile phone charger, computer, or car charger. 

It will take approximately 2 hours for a reader with low battery to charge completely. 

Note: You can also use the Dock for Square Reader to charge and accept payments. 

3. Wirelessly Connect Your Contactless + Chip Reader

The reader connects wirelessly with Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE). Be sure you have the latest version of the Square app for your device- only the latest version supports the Contactless + Chip Card Reader.

To connect your reader:

  1. Press and release the button on your reader to turn it on.
  2. Go to your device settings and make sure Bluetooth is turned on.
  3. Open the Square app and tap: Three Horizontal Lines
  4. Tap Settings > Card Readers > Connect a Reader.
  5. Put your reader into pairing mode by pressing the reader’s button for 3-5 seconds. Remove your finger as soon as you see orange flashing lights. If you see red flashing lights, you’ve held the button too long and you’ll need to try again.

Any necessary firmware updates will be automatically installed once the reader is connected.

When successfully connected, the reader will be listed as Reader Connected in-app.

Note: The wireless connection can be lost if the reader and device are more than 3m apart.

Keep in mind, if you are reconnecting a previously connected reader, you may need to forget your reader on your previous device. For more information on reconnecting a reader, check out our troubleshooting article.

Now that you’re setup, learn more about accepting chip card and contactless payments.

Square Stand and the Square Reader for Contactless and Chip

If you’re using a Square Stand with the reader, set up is simple. Place the reader into the supplied Dock for Square Reader) and connect the USB cable from the dock into the hardware hub on the Square Stand.

You can also connect your reader wirelessly via Bluetooth Low Energy using the steps above if there are no free USB ports on your Stand’s hardware hub. 

Watch this video to learn how to connect the Square Stand and reader:

Find answers to frequently asked questions and review these reader troubleshooting tips if you run into any issues.