Our rating(4/5)
The most comprehensive free POS app – with the caveat it only works with Square Reader.
Square Point of Sale (POS) is a very user-friendly system with all the standard POS functions small businesses need, regardless of whether you sell face to face or remotely.
  • Highs: Intuitive app. Quick to set up. Free software. Remote payment options included. No commitment.
  • Lows: Only works with Square Reader. Weekday-only customer support. Staff permissions cost extra.
  • Choose if: You want to start taking payments quickly without monthly costs.

In a nutshell

The Square Point of Sale app can be used on iPhone, iPad or Android devices as a main sales hub. Since everything is stored in the cloud, you can log in and use the app from anywhere, although certain things are only available from a browser.

As opposed to other EPOS systems, there are no monthly price plans to choose from – it really is a one-size system that is free to use. The only fees are Square Reader’s 1.75% transaction fee for contactless, chip and swipe card payments and the 2.5% transaction fee for keyed-in, online and remote payments.

The system also integrates with a wide range of paid partner apps, should you need more advanced tools.

Want to accept cards with Square POS?

Get started with Square POS for free with the card reader – pay just £19. No monthly fees or contract.

Mobile Transaction is an independent payments industry resource that is trusted by over a million small businesses yearly.

Discounts do not influence our editorial content such as reviews or recommendations. Ratings are based on full retail price. (Policy)

  • Square Reader price
Link to offer

Costs and fees

The Point of Sale app and Dashboard functionalities are free to use, as opposed to paying a subscription which most other EPOS systems require.

The Dashboard includes a free Virtual Terminal, Online Checkout (payment links), digital gift cards, invoicing, online ordering page and online store features, which other providers normally charge for.

Extra staff management functions do, however, cost £20 a month per store location. If you want to integrate the POS with external ecommerce or other tools, this is paid for separately through those other platforms.

Software Price
Point of Sale app & Dashboard features Free
Advanced employee permissions (Team Plus) £20/month per location
Partner apps (e.g. ecommerce, scheduling tools) Varies
Software Price
Point of Sale app & Dashboard features Free
Advanced employee permissions (Team Plus) £20/month per location
Partner apps (e.g. ecommerce, scheduling tools) Varies

To take chip and PIN and contactless payments, you pay £19 + VAT for Square Reader with free delivery. There is one year’s warranty on the device, with the option to return it within the first 30 days. A charging dock for for the reader costs £19 + VAT, or you can get the Square Stand package for £109 + VAT including an iPad stand, Square Reader and dock for the reader.

Hardware Price
Square Reader £19 + VAT
Dock for Square Reader £19 + VAT
Square Stand incl. Square Reader & Dock £109 + VAT
Hardware Price
Square Reader £19
Dock for Square Reader £19 + VAT
Square Stand incl. Square Reader & Dock £109 + VAT

The card terminals accept chip and contactless cards and mobile wallets via NFC. These cost a 1.75% fee for contactless and chip card payments and 2.5% for keyed-in and remote payments via the app, virtual terminal, ecommerce and invoicing.

Next-working-day deposits to your bank account are free. For a 1% fee in addition to the transaction charge, you can receive Instant Transfers in your bank account in just 20 minutes from the transaction.

Card payments Fee
Chip, contactless, swipe 1.75% per transaction
Keyed-in, invoicing, ecommerce, remote payments 2.5% per transaction
Instant Transfers 1% in addition to transaction fee
Card payments Fee
Chip, contactless, swipe 1.75% per transaction
Keyed-in, invoicing, remote payments 2.5% per transaction
Instant Transfers 1% in addition to transaction fee

Ease of checkout

The Point of Sale app allows you to switch between product interfaces grouped into categories of your choice. You see either a visual grid overview of products or list of categories.

Image: Mobile Transaction

Square POS products

Square POS grid menu in iPad app.

Physical products can be added to the product library, so you can just tap to add them to the shopping cart. If you don’t have the appropriate item in the product menu or sell a custom service, a custom amount can be added to the bill.

Image: Mobile Transaction

Product list menu in the Square POS app.

After tapping “Charge”, the payment method is picked (invoice included in options). You’ll need to be connected with Square Reader over Bluetooth to take contactless and chip payments at this stage. You’ll also need to be prepared to pass your smartphone or tablet to the customer for PIN entry if using a chip card, since the PIN pad will be on its screen.

Image: Mobile Transaction

Square POS payment methods

Payment methods screen.

You can split the tender to allow customers to pay some of the amount in e.g. cash and the rest with card. This could prevent awkward situations where the customer may not have enough cash or card balance for the bill.

After the payment is processed, the app gives the option to send a receipt via email or text, or you can print it from a connected printer. Receipts can be customised in the web Dashboard so it pretty much includes all the details you want.

Even the first time of using it, the checkout process is straightforward enough to understand on the spot. However, we highly recommend adding all the possible discounts, VAT info, products and prices in advance so receipts contain all the payment information customers will want on record.

POS features

Square Point of Sale’s features are more than just basic. It’s got little extras here and there to help you run a business more smoothly. For example, stock level alerts elevate the basic inventory functions, and digital gift cards are a nice extra not usually included in POS apps.

Let’s have a closer look at some of the noteworthy till features.

Inventory management: The inventory library keeps track of stock levels. You can differentiate between product types and add detailed descriptions and options around these. Using this also allows you to analyse what you’re selling and who is selling what. When items are low in stock, the stock level alerts remind you of this.

Square open order list and receipt

Open order list and example of a receipt.

Open orders and tipping: Cafés and establishments using customer tabs can use the open ticket features to juggle multiple orders at the same time. Tabs can be edited, merged and split into separate bills. Each order can be marked as eat-in, takeaway, delivery or pick-up, and you can add tips to any payment by adding a custom amount to the bill.

Despite Settings showing more complicated tipping options, when we switched these on, tipping did not show in the app as an explicit feature.

Refunds: Refunding is free and flexible through the app. Choose between refunding individual items from the transaction, or set a custom refund amount.

Customer loyalty: Create customer profiles that collect their sales history, save card details for next time, and let you text or email follow-up messages. Special discounts and vouchers can be applied to transactions – even time-limited offers can be automated. Get customer feedback through the digital receipts.

Employee management: Create multiple employee accounts that can sign in to the app separately. At the start and end of each shift, staff members can clock in and out, storing work hours in the backend, or you can manually create timesheets for staff.

Photo: Square