Tag Archives: sdk

QR Code Use on the Rise

The use of QR Codes has in recent years started to get a bad press in some quarters, their gratuitous use of annoyance to many. This has led to many predicting their speedy demise to be replaced by NFC which can offer more information. However is appears that for all the negativity the use of QR Codes in the USA has increased 40% year on year (taken from BBC website).

This will come of little surprise to those who have used QR Codes since unlike NFC there is little (almost no) cost in implementation. The only cost is in the printing of the QR Code and all the complicated information which you may wish to convey is simply held on a website. Especially at a time when companies do not have the money to invest heavily but still need to innovate the choice of QR Codes seems obvious.

It should also be seen as a consumer driven trend. Although every phone you now see advertised comes under the ‘smart phone’ category there are still many new people changing to smartphones each year; the market is not yet at its full size. Therefore as more people invest in smartphones the effectiveness of QR Codes can only increase. So if companies follow the basic rules or using short web addresses to keep the barcode simple and ensure that the user is offered something for their effort then QR Codes will continue to flourish.

Want to read QR Codes on your android? Check out our FREE application in the Google Play store. Alternatively if you want to learn about integrating barcode reading into your software then visit our website.


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Providing More For Less

Scanning the Washington Post website earlier I found a story about a church in America who were engaging with modern media; common sense stuff. They had started streaming their services over the internet and provided a live web chat alongside it. However the innovations are not reserved for those unable to make it, if you attend the Christ Fellowship church in McKinney, Texas, then you can scan a QR Code on the way in to download the service programme.

Far from being a simply gimmick this makes a lot of sense, firstly it stops a large amount of waste. A single QR Code is far more economical than printing hundreds of programmes. It should also be remembered that although the Washington Post terms this as a ‘high tech’ church it is actually very simply to set up. QR Code generators are freely available and simply have to contain a URL. It is no harder for the smart phone user with plenty of free barcode readers available such as the Bardecoder for android. So the surprise maybe isn’t that a few churches are adopting such methods but that more are not! It is clear that many church goers will not own smart phones but the beauty of the system is its low set up costs (free!) and that it can happily sit alongside existing structures.

This suggestion though is not purely one aimed at the religous, history shows those who innovate thrive. So if you are interested in integrating barcode reading into your business in any capacity, from document organising to tracking parts,then check out our website for more information!


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Mobile Money Network: Completing the Circle

The Mobile Money Network, owned by the Carphone Warehouse, is a mobile payment system. Along the same lines as Google Wallet and Paypal’s mobile payment system. Within the next year their aim is to have several hundred big companies using the network in advertising campaigns. This is where a fundamental change could occur in the use of QR Codes in adverts.

Currently it is too often the case that QR Codes in a glossy magazine simply takes you to more rubbish information about a product you already know you are interested in. However with the Mobile Money Network the plan is to link these QR Codes to instant purchase pages. Although security fears surrounding QR Codes have been raised in the past, with people able to put their own link over the top with ease, this should solve the problem; an application such as this will be able to verify that it is a proper authenticated product.

It will be interesting then to see how this develops. Big names such as Thorntons, HMV and Debenhams are reportedly considering adopting the scheme. Only time will tell whether this is a viable option but if they find an effective way to link it to peoples bank accounts (e.g. without having to top up another account regularly) then it could catch on. Only time will tell.


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The Data Matrix

If you read this blog, or many others for that matter, you could be forgiven for thinking that QR Codes are are the only 2D barcodes to exist. However the Data Matrix is still widely used and very effective in many situations. I started thinking about this following the Guardian blogon poor QR Code usage showed a Data Matrix and claimed it to be a QR Code which was simply to small to be of any use. Despite containing many amusing examples of terribly conceived QR Codes it also seem a bit desperate for content and forgets 2D barcodes need not be restricted to customer interaction.

Probably best to check what Barcode you're dealing with!

Both Data Matrix and QR Codes were developed by large businesses involved in technical production to track parts and products as they moved around. Since within a company you can choose the conditions for barcode reading and the quality level of the barcodes produced the large redundancy provided by QR Codes is not always necessary. Therefore Data Matrix can make for very space efficient barcoding.

For more information on Data Matrix standards see this useful PDF. Or for more information on how easily barcode reading can be incorporated into your company check out our website and try out SDK or ready to use application today!


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Quality QR Code Reading

QR Codes are big business, there is no avoiding them. Just look at this blog which theoretically is about all types of barcodes but the show is stolen by the QR Code. There is simply just more news about them.

Therefore when it was decided they should be added to our SDK and applications we realised it would have to be good. Now it has been around for a few months we are confident we have one of the best QR Code reading systems around. Although the huge redundancy in QR Codes does make them an efficient read this is often taken out by the marketing people, impressed by the amount the barcode can be messed around with. However as feedback continues to come in from customers we believe ours is working very well.

Quality QR Code Reading

One customer has noted the ability of our software to read however the code has been scanned “Straight or crooked; copy , fax or original… It’s really good.”

But don’t take our word for it, or theirs, you can try it today for free! We have a free application available through google play or you can download it from our website for mobile platforms, windows, OS and linux.

We would love to hear what you think so get in touch!


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Mobile Barcode Reading

Just a few years ago when someone was going to read a barcode it would have been assumed by the layman that they would require a hand held scanner, with the red laser lines like you get in the supermarket. However these days it is accepted that mobiles can achieve this quite happily. Therefore if you haven’t got mobile scanning integrated into your application perhaps it is time you had a look at it?

Increasingly companies are introducing mobile applications for their staff who want to use their own equipment, not some clunky standard issue stuff. This means that at a moments scanning the staff member can be linked directly to all the information required about a piece of hardware or a document which they have found.

If you want to give it a go then check out our ready made app on Google Play or even better check out our mobile SDK on our website.

Want more information? Just get in touch!


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These aren’t just QR Codes.. they are M&S QR Codes

British retailer Marks and Spencer are introducing wifi into ten of their shops alongside QR Codes so that customers can make the most of the information. Although some retailers have expressed concern at making it too easy for customers to view in the shops and then purchase elsewhere online history has proved that it is only those who embrace new technology who survive. As the mp3 music revolution has shown it is pointless to try and stop the progression, better to try and direct it in your favour!

The use of QR Codes in shops is obvious, for example if you find something you like but not in your size then stock information can be quickly found, or even order a delivery straight to your house! This saves both time and money for store and consumer.

It will be interesting to see if these schemes end up rolling out nationwide, I have not heard any more recently of the Oxfam QR Code trial; although it has only been a few months so I’m not jumping to conclusions.

What do you think of these changes?


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Bordeaux: QR Codes Boosting Tourism

We’ve all been on holiday somewhere, wondering around a grand city, when we see something of interest but your 20 year old guide book you purchased from a charity shop seems to have missed it out. Without a clue of what it was or any of its history you resign yourself to the fact you will never know.

Tourism is big business

Bordeaux however have set about changing all this, putting QR Codes across the city, near tourist attractions, which can be scanned for the user to find out more. Although it could be argued that a simple board containing the information could be placed near the objects the QR Codes offers far more. It can offer the content in far more languages, and far more content, for much less room as well as being able to offer various types of media. A link could take you to an information page complete with a video history. What is more this can all be updated from a computer rather than hiring expensive contractors to go and change the information board next to every attraction.

This initiative is in conjunction with several other innovative moves such as interactive mobile based games around the city which involves ‘unlocking’ the city and renaming streets.

Would you ever use this stuff if you were on holiday there?

p.s. Check out our mobile SDK which has a great QR scanner or download our FREE bardecoder app for android.

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February Special offer for Mobile SDK

So January is over, already a twelfth of the way through 2012. Therefore it seems only right that we have a special offer for our blog and twitter followers…

Usually to develop and use the SDK costs 2,999 but for February we are offering the Mobile SDK Developer license with 25 runtime licenses! What is more if you email sales@bardecode.com quoting ‘blog’ we can offer you a 15% discount code for this month on the mobile SDK (any of the mobile SDK licenses).

Unsure if our mobile SDK is for you? Then get across to our website and download it for free to check it out or go to the android market place to try our free ready built app. It reads 1d and 2d barcodes including QR Codes.

Any questions just post them below or email sales@bardecode.com

We look forward to hearing from you!


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Barcode Art

A large amount of my day is taken looking at barcodes. Whether it be to try and work out why someone can’t get it to be read (“have you checked it actually is a barcode sir?”) or simply geeking up on something I have to say they do lose some excitement; if they ever had any.  Therefore I found it fascinating when I came across this website with 12 examples of Barcode art. To see the mundane bars of data which I encounter every day used so differently was refreshing. Although some of them used the similarity to a cage there were several of them simply showcasing the strange, and very subtle,  interest in the shape of a barcode. I don’t think I’d actually like the barcode Chandelier or Sofa (ouch) in my home or office but their existence somewhere is nice to know.

This is not my first encounter with barcodes as art however; QR codes are used widely within the world of marketing and therefore interact with consumers in a way most barcodes do not. This inevitably leads to people trying to make them more appealing and more attention grabbing. It is not uncommon to see a barcode out of the usual black/white mould these days. Some take this one step further and turn the QR Codes into functional artwork as shown by this website which describes how. As a company who provide barcode reading software  software this is essentially a nightmare as they are deliberately taking away the large redundancy provided by QR Codes which make them so effective. I have personally found several examples where so much data has been removed the barcode is no longer readable.It has also occurred to me that by turning the QR Code into art it becomes far less obvious to the consumer what they should do with it.

Our website is covered with pictures of barcode type images appearing in nature, mainly of course in the form of tree lines. Check them out for yourself here.



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