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Set Up Your Hardware with Square for Restaurants

To get the most out of Square for Restaurants, you can customize your point of sale settings to fit your business model — helping you streamline your ordering and checkout flow.

Device Codes

With Square for Restaurants, rather than using your email address and password to sign in to Restaurants on your iPad or Square Register, you’ll sign in with a device code. A device code can only be used on a single device — so if you have multiple devices at a location, create a unique code for each device accessing the Restaurants POS app. Once you create a device code, you’ll use it each time you sign in to a specific device to start taking orders.

Set Up Hardware for Restaurants

USB Connection

To set up hardware from Restaurants:

  1. Open the Square for Restaurants App > Account > Setup Hardware. If you are using Square Register, tap Utilities and Settings.

Note: If you’re using a Square Stand to connect your compatible USB cash drawers, just insert the USB plug directly into the hub of the Stand — your hardware will automatically connect. Just make sure you’re signed into the Restaurants app with a device code.

Bluetooth Connection

With the exception of the Square contactless + chip card reader, which connect through the Restaurants app, all other Bluetooth devices will need to be connected through your iPad settings. Read more about setting up hardware with your iPad.

Note: Bluetooth only works with iPads and is not compatible with Square Register.

Compatible Hardware

Square Stand

You can purchase the Square Stand from the Square Shop. Once you have your Square Stand, just insert your iPad and start taking payments. The Square Stand includes a USB port to directly connect a supported receipt printer, cash drawer, and barcode scanner.

Read more about setting up your Square Stand, as well as recommended hardware to create your point of sale station.

Square Register

To sign in to Square for Restaurants on your Register, make sure that your Register is updated to the latest software. Log out of Square Point of Sale and log back in using a Square Restaurants Device Code.

Keep in mind that only Square for Restaurants Free features are available on your Register. When upgrading from Restaurants Free to Restaurants Plus or Premium plans, the paid point of sale features are currently not available on Register. But if you do upgrade, you can still access premium features like Menu Reports and included Team Management, via your online Square Dashboard.

Review our Support Center for setting up your Square Register.

Square Reader for Contactless and Chip

To begin, make sure to charge your reader.

To do so:

  1. Have the reader and accompanying USB cable handy. This cable can be the included USB cable that came with your reader or an extended USB-C to USB-A cable for Square Reader for contactless and chip (2nd generation). You can also use the white Dock for Square Reader (1st generation only) to charge your reader. 

  2. Connect one end of the USB cable to your reader and the other end to a USB port (e.g. a mobile phone charger, laptop, or desktop computer) or the USB hardware hub for Square Stand. You can also insert your reader into the Bosstab Dock for Square Reader to keep your reader secure on your tabletop. Simply thread the charging cable through the back of the dock.

It takes around 2 hours for a reader with a low battery to charge completely. To check your battery level, press the button on the side of your reader. If fully charged, you will see 4 green lights.

If you’re using a Square Stand with the reader, connect your reader to the USB hardware hub of the Stand with the included USB cable or the Dock for Square Reader for contactless and chip (1st generation). If all USB ports on the hub are occupied by other hardware, you can connect your reader wirelessly to your device.

Once you connect, you should see your reader appear automatically with the status Ready.

Wirelessly Connect Your Reader to Your Device

Before connecting your reader, make sure Bluetooth is turned on in your device settings. Note: The reader pairs to Square through the Square for Restaurants POS app – not through your device settings, so be sure to follow each step below:

  1. Go to the Restaurants POS app and tap Account.

  2. Tap Settings > Hardware.

  3. Under Square Readers, tap Connect a Reader.

To pair your Square Reader for contactless and chip:

  1. Put the reader into pairing mode by pressing the reader’s power button for 3–10 seconds. You’ll see 4 blinking orange lights.

  2. Immediately release your finger when you see the orange lights. If you see red lights, you’ve held the button too long and you can try again.

  3. In the app, a pairing confirmation will appear, make sure to tap “Pair” to complete the pairing process.

    1. On Android devices, quickly tap Pair and Pair & connect each time you are prompted until the connection is successful. If the connection fails, start the pairing process over and make sure to accept all Pair and Pair & connect prompts within 5 seconds.

Note: Due to extended security measures, some Android devices will require multiple confirmations during the pairing process.  We apologize for any inconvenience and are actively working with Android to help make this process easier.

When the reader is connected, it will be listed as Ready in the app and the reader’s lights will turn green for 2 seconds. Keep in mind, the wireless connection can be lost if the reader and device are more than approximately 10 feet apart.

If you run into any issues, review troubleshooting steps to help resolve most problems with connecting the Square Reader for contactless and chip.

Mobile POS

Our powerful Restaurants mobile POS comes with two new handheld options to match your workflows:

Receipt Printers, Kitchen Printers, and Cash Drawers

View a full list of compatible hardware to start using your Restaurants point of sale.

For receipt printers, we recommend the Star Micronics TSP143IIIU or the Star Micronics mC-Print3 Thermal Printer. USB printers can connect to one POS device at a time. An Ethernet printer connects to your network, allowing multiple POS devices to print receipts and tickets from the same printer.

In addition to, or as an alternative to a kitchen printer with paper tickets, you may be interested in a digital ticket display system. Square KDS (Kitchen Display System) can help you organize and fulfill orders to maximize the number of items passing through your kitchen.  Learn more about Square KDS.

Printer Stations

Most restaurants need to print specific menu items to separate printers. For example, if an order has both drinks and appetizers, you can set up a bar printer to receive drinks, and a kitchen printer to receive appetizers.

Once you’ve connect your supported printer, you can create a printer station to start routing categories to separate printers:

  1. On an iPad, tap Account < Setup Hardware. If using Square Register, tap Utilities and Settings.

  2. Select Create Printer Station.

  3. Name your printer (for instance “Bar Printer”) and select the ticket and receipt types sent to this printer.

  4. Under Print From This Device, you can choose Receipt, Bills, and Reporting print options — as well as Order Tickets (tickets containing food & beverage orders), Order Ticket Stubs (numbered tickets for Quick Service Restaurants), and Voided Tickets.

  5. Scroll down and enable categories you’d like to send to this printer station.

  6. Tap Create Printer Station.

Printer Station Troubleshooting

When you create a printer station, the printer name displayed is automatically determined by each device. If you have multiple devices connected to a single printer, each Device may generate a different name.

For example, let’s say you want to send Appetizers from two points of sale to a single kitchen printer. When you connect both devices to the printer, the first device may identify the kitchen printer as Printer 1, and the second device may identify it as Printer 2, depending on how many active printers you have. To make sure both devices send Appetizers to the same printer, you’ll need to perform a print test.

To get started:

  1. Open the Square for Restaurants App > Account > Setup Hardware. If you are using Square Register, tap Utilities and Settings.

  2. Next, tap Create a Printer Station.

  3. Select a printer and tap Print Test.

Hardware Troubleshooting

In the Restaurants app, visit Settings > Hardware to monitor the connectivity status of your devices. If you have trouble printing receipts, use the following tips for Ethernet interface, USB interface, and Bluetooth receipt printers.

Verifying the Network

Before you begin troubleshooting, ensure that your printer is connected to the correct Wi-Fi network. Visit Settings in your iPad (outside of the Square for Restaurants app), tap Wi-Fi and ensure that your device is connected to the correct network.

Note: For best performance, ensure that your internet speed is at least 25 mbps.

If you are connected to Wi-Fi and have confirmed that it is the correct network, try these troubleshooting steps:

  • Turn your device’s Wi-Fi off and then on again.

  • Turn your device completely off and then back on.

  • Turn your receipt printer off and unplug all cables. Plug all cables back in and turn the receipt printer on.

  • Make sure the receipt printer is fully plugged in and a roll of paper is in the printer.

  • Turn your Wi-Fi router off and then on again.

  • Ensure the Wi-Fi router is working and that your device is connected.

Offline Mode

If your Wi-Fi network goes down during service, you can take advantage of Offline Mode to make sure your restaurant can keep serving.

To enable Offline Mode for your Square Terminal and Square Register, head to your Square Dashboard:

  1. Select Account & Settings > Business information > Device from the navigation drop down.

  2. Choose the correct device.

  3. Scroll to Offline Mode and toggle on Allow Offline Mode.

  4. Hit Save.

  5. Your device will now enter Offline Mode automatically when you lose Wi-Fi connection.

To learn more about Offline Mode and how to keep your operation running during an outage, check out our Offline Mode FAQ.

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