iZettle Reader 2 – What’s New?

The most noticeable change in the iZettle Reader 2, recently launched in the UK, is the new green button replacing the previous blue one. Despite this subtle difference, iZettle has not widely publicised the update, and much of the promotional material still features images of the original iZettle Reader. So, what are the actual updates? 

iZettle Reader 2 Review 

The iZettle Reader is one of the best card readers available. Here’s the review of the iZettle Reader 2. 

Key Differences Between iZettle Reader 1 and Reader 2 

Feature  iZettle Reader (1st Gen.)  iZettle Reader 2 
Introduced  July 2016  November 2018 
Price  £59 excl. VAT  £59 excl. VAT 
Coating  Rubbery, prone to staining  More resistant to dirt, less smooth 
Size  11 x 7 x 1.5-2 cm  11 x 7 x 1.5-2 cm 
Weight  135 g  125 g 
Sleep Mode  Yes  More intelligent activation, saves energy 
Power Button  Prone to accidental pressing  More user-friendly, less likely to be switched off by mistake 
Magstripe  Yes  No 
Backside  Blank  Two rubber stripes to prevent sliding 
Payment Indication  Display lights up when ready for card  Blinking light when ready to take payment 

A Quest for Perfection 

Over the years, iZettle has launched various card readers, each differing in design and functionality, in pursuit of the ideal product. This journey seemed to culminate in June 2016 with the introduction of the iZettle Reader, a device that exuded confidence and garnered widespread acclaim, including the prestigious Red Dot Award in 2017. 

However, iZettle’s engineers were not content to rest on their laurels. They sought to enhance the device further, guided by user feedback. As iZettle stated: 

“According to user reviews, the iZettle Reader has been our best reader yet. However, we still believed that we could make it even better. Based on our users’ inputs, we introduced the iZettle Reader 2.” 

What’s New in Reader 2? 

Building on the success of its predecessor, the iZettle Reader 2 features subtle yet significant improvements. The device retains the same shape and size but is slightly sturdier and 10 grams lighter. The available colours remain black and white. 

Enhanced Battery and Connectivity 

The new Reader 2 boasts the same 8-hour battery life as the original but with a more efficient sleep function, enabling over 250 transactions per charge, compared to around 100 with the first generation. The introduction of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology makes pairing faster, easier, and more reliable. BLE also allows the device to wake up directly from the iZettle Go app, enhancing battery efficiency. 

Improved Durability and Usability 

The iZettle Reader 2’s surface is tougher and more resistant to grease, making it easier to clean. Two rubber strips on the underside prevent slipping on smooth surfaces. The keypad and overall feel of the device have also been improved for better user experience. 

Enhanced Payment Indication 

Previously, the device lit up a green, non-blinking LED when ready for payment. The new model uses pulsating lights, which should prompt customers to proceed with the payment more quickly. The green button, more intuitively indicating “OK” or “confirm”, replaces the blue one. 

Security Enhancements 

The new reader is more secure by removing magstripe acceptance. With the decline of magnetic stripe technology in Europe, iZettle has focused entirely on chip-based and contactless payments. 

Should You Upgrade? 

For those with an older iZettle model, upgrading to the Reader 2 is advisable. However, if you already own the first-generation iZettle Reader, the enhancements may not justify the cost of a new device. The Reader 2 is an excellent product, but so is the original. 

For new customers, now is a great time to join iZettle and enjoy the improved functionality of the Reader 2. Enthusiasts may upgrade for the minor improvements, but for most businesses, the original iZettle Reader remains a strong and cost-effective option.