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SumUp AIR Card Reader Model: AIR1E205

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The Card Reader becomes "blocked" after receiving a small shock/hit

The Card reader fell to the floor and received a shock, not when booting it up it says “Device Blocked.Please ContactSupport” support tells me that this is a “fail mechanism” that gets triggered by droping it

the only way to “fix this” is to get a new one

So.. i opened the card reader. seems there are 2 Pads with a coper lining in them that are never ever supposed to contact the board pins underneath the pads, and if the device gets dropped hard enough the pads will cause the pins underneath to contact each other.

Also on the other side of the board is what apears to be a other small connectorboard that is fitted in a way that if it would be dropped, the small connector board would disconnect from the other part, causing it to not make a connection anymore

This device is ment to be caried around and use mobile. So offcourse this kind of fail mechanism is totally idiotic

And offcourse it broke just 2 days after the warranty was over

I am trying to get this back to work since im not a fan at all of this kind of nonsense to get people to buy more stuff while the other unit the are replacing is technically still functional

I tried removing the sodim inside, removed the foam pads with the copper lining and soldered the lifted of small piece back to its place

Only thing i mannaged to do is reset the date and open a service port on the device (trough usb connection)

If anyone has a clue on what i can do, please tell me

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Hello, I’ve had this same issue and SumUp said that it’s a security measure and it’s not possible to remove the block, you can get it replaced for free if it was purchased under a year ago.


Like everyone here, I had the same problem just recently. About 10 days after the warranty expired my device got blocked. Of course it happened the day we had a stall so no transactions were possible. I contacted the customer support via chat twice as the first time I was cut off. Long story short, I was told that there is nothing that can be done and they refused to replace it. I explained to them that I used it only twice and that it was always safely stored in my closet. Never dropped or exposed to high temperature or extreme weather blah blah. They wouldn't have it.

Like everyone else, I looked up to see if there is anything that can be done and I came across this forum. So I took the advice someone said to take legal action against them as he did it and he got his money back + court expenses.

I sent them an email saying that since after contacting them through chat they refused to replace the device, I will take legal action against them.

Three days later I got a free replacement.

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I have just had a chat with Sumup support with a

“Device is Blocked. Please contact support [0105000000]” - Message

I purchased my device 3-4 years ago. After receiving it I initially set it up & it has spent the remainder of its time in the Box it arrived in (Completely un-used)

The trigger for my blockage isn’t shock, impact nor tampering! it’s because

“I haven’t charged the battery regularly enough?” according to the support team?

I queried if this apparently timed (Self-Detonation) feature was mentioned in the

“paperwork that I would have received when I purchased the card reader?”

The answer that I received was

“It is advised to charge the Battery regularly, To prevent damage to the Battery!”

I then asked

“Is the Blockage due to Battery failure?”

To which the obvious answer is NO. The Battery was Flat, so I connected it to my PC & I was immediately greeted by 4 illuminated lights & the message above… The Cardreader remained connected to the PC whilst I spoke with the customer support team (Approx 15 mins) I removed the Cardreader from the PC & low & behold the Battery had charged??

I explained to the Support team that

“I repair electronics - Micro soldering - IC replacement, Jumper wires, Board trace repairs etc. requiring the use of a microscope & have a very in depth understanding & knowledge of Board level electronics, specifically SMC’s”

I asked the support team

“Why has the anti-tamper trigger been activated? is it due to a failing battery? if this is the case, then it does not constitute tampering??" even though the Battery isn’t failing & is charging as normal

The response was

“I’m sorry, I don’t know but because the warranty has expired, we are not able to help you!”

I explained to them that because this unit was now a paperweight! & as such I told them

“I am now out of pocket, I have no intention of replacing it but will quite happily upload a video to my YouTube Channel showing my disassembling & reverse engineering this unit! in order to ascertain the Trigger mechanism & how to circumnavigate it & whilst I am in the process I will list every IC & major component contained within it! & where to source them all!”

I also made them aware of the fact that there are bound to be several thousand people that will be quite happily entertained whilst watching this video

I made them aware

“If I am unable to use this cardreader for it intended purpose to earn me money then I will earn money from YouTube dismantling the damned thing”

At this point after reading my intentions, I was promptly informed by the support team that

“The Technical Department would contact me as a matter of urgency. with the intention of resolving this issue!!”

If I haven’t heard anything within a couple of days, I will proceed with the Video :)

(There will be alot of interested parties that are a lot smarter than me that will take alot of interest in my findings)

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So funny, but it's a shame that the support only respond to a threat

Thanks for this whole string, I thought it was me- will stop struggling to make it work. Only used it once 2 years ago and it's obviously been blocked in the meantime. Rubbish.

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ii think its just a scam so that you buy a new one i have dropped

my one lots of time, and it was always working then suddenly two

days ago a customer inserts a card and it stopped working and it was not dropped

i think its a scam by sumup to make more money, i think that they

block your machine from from their end so you buy a new one

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This happened to me while my reader was sat in it's box, fully charged in my desk draw. So after being told multiple times they couldn't replace it and I had to buy a new one, I decided to do the petty (but morally right) thing and issue a small claims court notice at essentially the same price as a new machine.

Surprise surprise, two weeks later they refunded me the money + the court fee (£85).

I would suggest everyone who has this same issue to do the same. They shouldn't develop things with planned obselesance, its the last thing the planet needs.

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Unfortunately also two sumup devices with this message, the air and the solo. Both devices stopped working in the same week 4 months after the warranty. It seems that this is done deliberately from SumUp to be able to sell new ones.

Yeah. It definitely seems that way. I've never had any other device just brick itself. I would recommend taking the small claims route - Super simple to do and we have a chance at stopping them doing it if they get enough claims. - https://www.gov.uk/make-court-claim-for-...

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@norman ludgate

unfortunatly not. I throw the broken one away and bought a new one.

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@michaelhow57243 we have the same issue. Card reader never been used since it was bought in 2017 other than a quick test transaction.

Do you have the details of what you put in your claim as I want to go down the same route? Or at least the gist of it?

This isn't about the money it is making sure they start to take some notice and produce a product that doesn't block when it shouldn't or at least replace for free in circumstances like this.

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We have several different types of the Sumup card readers and all of them have been blocked at some point , we have even left them on the cradle over the weekend to return on a Monday morning and it’s blocked , some of them are lucky to last 6 weeks and they fail , probably the worst one is the one with the printer it constantly breaks down and has been returned at least 4 times in the last 8 months ,

We are now looking at other companies and card readers as enough is enough with the Sumup defective machines

Sorry, Just seen your message. I would actively encourage you to issue the claim, the more that do it the quicker they will stop clearly making devices brick themselves.

Here was my claim text -

I bought an Sum Up Air device which was delivered around 25.08.2017. At

no point was it stated that this device would have a shelf life or

that any environmental conditions would effect the device. This device has

been used a couple of times to take payments, but other than that has spent

its life in its original box, stored in my desk draw. I recently turned on the device without the need to charge it, but the screen stated

"Device Blocked". As this device has been stored very safely in its original

packaging and has not been tampered with, I believe this has been remotely

blocked by Sum UP to force me to buy another device. It's important to note

that the device still has full power, connects to my phone by blutooth and has the ability to function correctly apart from it being digitally restricted.

You just need to ensure you have contacted them and warned them that the next step will be legal action, as you will need to demonstrate to the court you have taken as many steps as possible before issuing court summons.


The process is simple and on their side they never even called / messaged to discuss. They acknowledged the receipt of the claim a week later and then about a week after that they just issued a payment in full (device + court fees) to the bank details on my account.

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Mine worked fine last weekend. Turned it on today to find it blocked. Not been dropped (just been sitting on worktop all week). Wasted ages messaging robots through Sumup Support. Finally spoke to a human to be told its several years old - buy a new one! When I objected & said it hadn't been dropped or even used since last week, I was told it had probably been plugged in too long or subject to extreme temperatures 🤯

I have now replaced it WITH A ZETTLE.

I'm convinced Sumup stop them working from their end to make you replace the reader. Won't be buying another from them!

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Two devices blocked in the same week, both four months out of warranty. I put both devices in the closet and after three weeks of vacation they are blocked.
On the solo I get the message that I'm getting a brand new one, but after contacting sumup that also turns out to be a scam. I was with Sumup and their company account. But now without any leniency I am not very happy anymore.

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I’ve the same issue with my Air terminal. We use that device in our taxi and suddenly it broke today at 8:45 am. This %#*@ thing never touched the floor or anything else and it’s always charged. The device is out of warrenty since February 2021.

Support sad to me the same thing “we can’t do anything else. Please buy a new device”.

Were you be able to find out anything regarding electronics and reverse engineering?

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Hi, I have only just began to dismantle my Paperweight (SumUp Reader) I will upload my findings at a later date but currently it seems as though the only way to reset the configuration is with an interface (I haven’t figured out which as yet?) but have I have tried several various software methods. I have managed to make the device discoverable but non writeable! Once I have uploaded the Board & component details (Photos) I am hoping that there will be others that will recognise them & maybe able to offer a schematic?

Unfortunately at this moment in time, I am afraid that a replacement unit is currently the only quick fix solution

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Yep, I bought a new device so we can further accept payments.

I also found this topic while I was doing a small research


He listed some of the components of the Sumup Air Terminal. Maybe it could be useful.

I guess if we want to reset the device we need to unsolder some chips right?

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Did you manage to fix this? I have a similar problem and my card reader was not dropped…

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I get the need for tamper protection (probably needed for PCI DSS compliance), but the devices are too fragile. We bought 4 solo devices to use in our theatre bar and coffee corner. One of them came up with the blocked message. From enquiries, I think it was dropped onto the counter (about 20cm) - there isn't a single mark on the device. I contacted sumup as it was still in warranty (just) but they said a drop voids the warranty (despite there being no evidence of such - my fault for even mentioning it!).

I won't be recommending anything other than the air readers from now on, as they are much cheaper to replace.

The sumup app on android is supposed to support "tap on phone", which could be used for contactless if the card reader fails, but despite ensuring nfc is enabled on my phone I never see the option in the checkout. No idea if they'll be adding a similar feature to the ios app now that apple tap to pay is a thing.

For anyone new starting out I'll be pointing them at zettle, as the 'tap on phone' feature works on their app!

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We had not used the device for a year or so due to covid. It would not charge, or turn on without the lead connected. I opened it up by removing the 2 screws under the rear label. The battery measured only 0.8 volts so was presumably too low to charge. I charged it up to 3.5V from an external supply. It then booted fine but came up with the contact support message.

I suspect that once you take the back off the little switch mechanism activates and bricks the unit. Dropping it can also trigger this. Seems unfair.

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Have the same problem sumup won't replace it and assume i use pay urls but when i ask about maestro cards and pay online they only say min 1 its possible, min 2 its probably possible and min 3 it's then not possible, they should start learning how they're products work before they go to support...

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