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Square’s new Apple Pay-ready contactless card reader now rolling out

Square Apple Pay

Earlier this year around WWDC, Square announced that it would be selling new hardware that will allow small businesses to easily accept Apple Pay later this year. Now Square is setting up 100 small businesses around the US with their new Apple Pay-ready contactless card reader. These allow customers to pay merchants using Apple’s mobile payment service through iPhones and Apple Watches securely and without sharing credit card information. While Square has provided 100 local businesses with the new readers, according to USA Today, several customers who signed up to pre-order the Apple Pay-ready devices earlier this summer were recently notified that some orders would not ship until early next year.

We’ve had such high demand for the new Square contactless and chip reader that it’s taking us longer than expected to fulfill every order.

In the meantime, Square has customers who reserved the new readers would not have to worry about the new liability shift around securing transactions.

The new Apple Pay-compatible Square reader works wirelessly through a rechargeable battery, or can optionally plug into a Square Stand USB hub for power.

Aside from Apple Pay and other NFC payment solutions, the new readers also can take payments from new debit and credit cards that use chip and pin (or EMV). Square Contactless + Chip Reader is sold at pre-order for $49.99. Swipe fees start at 2.75.

Earlier this year, Apple partnered with PayAnywhere to distribute a competing solution for small businesses. Similarly priced at Square’s solution, PayAnywhere’s Apple Pay reader is sold in Apple Stores for $39.95 with the first $5,000 in Apple Pay transactions free.

Update: Square has a press release to detail the roll out:

Local Sellers Across the Country Are the First to Accept Mobile Payments With Square’s New Reader

Select Cities Including Chicago, New York, San Francisco, & St. Louis Are Now Accepting Apple Pay

SAN FRANCISCO, CA–(Marketwired – November 23, 2015) – Starting today, 100 local business owners across the country are the first to accept chip cards and payments like Apple Pay from their customers with Square’s new reader, giving their customers a simple, fast, and secure payment experience. They represent the first set of local businesses to have access to the same new technologies that big corporations often invest in. With a tap of a phone, their customers are out the door.

The first group of businesses to use Square’s new reader include Honey Butter Fried Chicken in Chicago, Philz Coffee in San Francisco, Sump Coffee in St. Louis, Cafe Grumpy in New York City, and all 20+ merchants in the Urbanspace Vanderbilt food hall in New York.

“We’ve always wanted to offer our customers the option to pay with Apple Pay and we’re thrilled that Square has helped us make this a reality,” said Joshua Kulp, Executive Chef of Honey Butter Fried Chicken in Chicago.

“Our customers have been asking about contactless payments. Now it’s here — with one tap, customers at our Grand Central location can grab a coffee right before they jump on the train!” said Caroline Bell, Owner of Cafe Grumpy in New York City.

Local sellers are also using Square’s new reader in cities across the country, including Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Denver, Los Angeles, Nashville, New Orleans, Miami, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Seattle, Tampa, and Washington, D.C.

Announced in June, the contactless and chip card reader is a wireless reader that comes ready out of the box, connects with Square Stand or a mobile device, and pairs seamlessly with Square’s free point-of-sale app. To make a payment, all a customer has to do is hold their device near the reader or insert their chip card. The reader then initiates the payment and the whole transaction just takes seconds to complete. With the iPhone’s fingerprint technology (Touch ID), a signature is no longer required. The new reader meets the highest standards of security because it optimizes for accepting authenticated payments like EMV and contactless (like Apple Pay and Android Pay). Sellers can visit to order the new Square Reader for $49.

About Square, Inc.: Square creates tools that helps sellers of all sizes start, run, and grow their businesses. Square’s point-of-sale service offers tools for every part of running a business, from accepting credit cards and tracking inventory, to real-time analytics and invoicing. Square also offers sellers financial and marketing services, including small business financing and customer engagement tools. Business and individuals use Square Cash, an easy way to send and receive money, as well as Caviar, a food delivery service for popular restaurants. Square was founded in 2009 and is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in the United States, Canada, Japan, and Australia.

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  1. I was surprised at the beginning of Apple Pay to see that the amount of the transaction wasn’t displayed on the iPhone. I felt that what was written on the cashier screen could be easily faked. But now that there is no more screen… :p

  2. I was surprised at the beginning of Apple Pay to see that the amount of the transaction wasn’t displayed on the iPhone. I felt that what was written on the cashier screen could be easily faked. But now that there is no more screen… ^^

  3. AbsarokaSheriff - 7 years ago

    It’s a good start, but only a 100 before the end of the year will mean a lot of Christmas shopping opportunities will be missed.

    It’s a handsome device but it also looks easy to walk away with. I hope they have a good mechanism for securing it.

    Given that Apple is selling alternatives today for small business, I hope they can ramp up production quickly.


Avatar for Zac Hall Zac Hall

Zac covers Apple news for 9to5Mac and hosts the 9to5Mac Happy Hour and 9to5Mac Watch Time podcasts.