Chip & Swipe Reader

Available only from Shopify

Chip & Swipe card reader for Shopify POS

The Shopify Chip & Swipe Reader is an EMV-compliant credit card reader that connects wirelessly to your iPad, iPhone, or Android device. Customers can insert or swipe their card, and then sign on the screen of your POS device.

Who is the Chip & Swipe Reader for?

The Chip & Swipe Reader is pocket-sized, wireless, and comes with a base to rest on a countertop. It's a good choice if you often sell in different locations, or if you're just getting started with accepting card payments in a retail store.

You can also use the Chip & Swipe Reader alongside another card reader as a cost-effective backup when you're travelling or during busy selling periods.

Card reader requirements and supported payment types

To use the Chip & Swipe Reader, you need to meet the following requirements:

  • a store based in the United States
  • Shopify Payments activated as your store's payment provider
  • a compatible iPad, iPhone, or Android device:
    iPhone iPhone 5 or better running iOS 9 or higher
    iPad Gen 3 or better running iOS 9 or higher
    Android Android device running version 4.4 (KitKat) or higher
  • a compatible version of Shopify POS:
    iOS Shopify POS 4.0.1 or higher
    Android Shopify POS 2.1.0 or higher

You can use the Chip & Swipe Reader to accept payments from the following credit card types:

  • Visa and Visa Debit
  • Mastercard and Debit Mastercard
  • American Express
  • Discover

Where to buy the Chip & Swipe Reader

The Chip & Swipe Reader is available from the Shopify Hardware Store in the United States.

When you buy the Chip & Swipe Reader, you'll also receive the following accessories:

  • a base for standing the card reader on a countertop
  • a USB cable for charging the reader
  • a travel case

Power the Chip & Swipe Reader on and off

To turn on the Chip & Swipe Reader, press and release the power button on the side of the reader. The status light will turn on. If you've already paired and connected the reader with your POS device, then the reader will automatically connect to the device.

After 30 seconds of inactivity, the Chip & Swipe Reader goes into standby mode, and its status light will flash every 5 seconds. While in standby mode, the card reader will turn on automatically when you take a card payment at checkout.

After 3 hours of inactivity, the Chip & Swipe Reader will turn itself off fully. When you next want to take a card payment, you'll need to press and release the power button to turn on the card reader again. Typically you'll need to turn on the card reader only once a day. You can manually turn off the reader at any time by pressing and holding the power button until the status light turns off.

The Chip & Swipe Reader status light

Whenever the Chip & Swipe Reader is turned on, its status light shows the reader's connection status and whether the reader needs to be charged:

Continuous flashing The card reader is ready to connect to a POS device.
Flashing every 5 seconds The card reader is in standby mode.
Green The card reader is charged.
Yellow The card reader is charging.
Red The card reader's battery is at 10% and the reader should be charged.
No light The card reader is turned off.

You can continue to make sales when the status light turns red, but you should charge the reader soon.

Charge the Chip & Swipe Reader

You can charge the Chip & Swipe Reader by using the USB cable that's supplied with it. To charge the reader, plug the mini USB connector into the card reader or its base, and then plug the larger USB connector into a phone charger or computer:

Mini USB being plugged into a Shopify Chip and Swipe reader

The Chip & Swipe Reader takes 1-2 hours to charge fully. After the reader's fully charged, its battery should last for a week of selling (about 400 chip transactions, or 700 swipe transactions).

Pair and connect the Chip & Swipe Reader to your POS device

To use the card reader with Shopify POS, you need to pair and connect the reader with your device. After the reader and device are paired, the reader will connect to the device automatically whenever both are turned on and in range.

To pair the Chip & Swipe Reader with your device:

Unpair the Chip & Swipe Reader from your POS device

You can use the the Chip & Swipe Reader with only one device at a time. If you want to use the card reader with another device, then you need to first unpair it from its current device.

To unpair the Chip & Swipe Reader and its device:

Accept payment with the Chip & Swipe Reader

Troubleshoot the Chip & Swipe Reader

If your card reader isn't working, then go through the following steps with a test order for a $1.00 quick sale item (you can refund the order later):

  1. Check that you meet the requirements to use the Chip & Swipe Reader.

  2. Check that you have an internet connection. Shopify POS needs to connect to the internet through wi-fi or your device's cellular data to process payments. If you can't connect to the internet, then you won't be able to process card payments.

    If you don't meet all of the requirements, then you can still take credit card payments using an external payment terminal.

  3. Check that your device has Bluetooth enabled and that the card reader is showing as connected in the Shopify POS hardware settings. If the card reader isn't showing as connected, then try pairing the card reader with your device.

  4. Make sure that you're tapping Credit at the payments screen. The External Credit and External Debit payment options are only for when you're using an external payment terminal instead of a Shopify-supported card reader.

  5. Make sure that you're inserting or swiping the card correctly.

  6. Try entering the credit card information manually. If this works, then there's a problem with the card reader.

  7. If the manual entry doesn't work, then force quit the Shopify POS app, and then turn off the device and card reader. Turn the device back on, open Shopify POS, and then turn on the card reader. When the card reader's status light shows that the reader's connected, try another test order.

If your card reader's still not working, then contact the Shopify Support team.

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