The Guardian’s Victor Keegan on QR-Codes

March 20th, 2009

Victor Keegan from The Guardian has recently posted an interesting article about his experience with QR-Codes. From his article, he goes on to talk about how he used a QR-Code reader to scan the barcode of products in his local Sainsbury’s.

He highlights ShopSavvy, an Android based application that allows you to scan and compare products using their barcode. Remember CompareEverywhere (AndroidScan)? Both winners of Google’s Android challenge.

Quote: “One of the reasons barcodes haven’t taken off in the UK is that, whereas in Japan the dominant operator in effect imposed a standard, here different companies are peddling their own in the forlorn hope of sweeping all competitors aside.” Source: Victor Keegan

Personally, I could not agree more; if there was one major mobile phone manufacturer using one barcode standard then Europe may well have adopted to QR-Codes by now. Could Nokia achieve this? They do have around a 60% market share in Europe. Where does that leave the US?

Personally, local supermarkets is not where I see the benefit of QR-Codes or barcode scanning. I see barcode scanning becoming very useful if you plan to make a big investment in say… an LCD television; you could walk into a large retailer, size up the item, check out its spec then scan and compare for a cheaper price elsewhere. Most people say buying on the internet is slightly cheaper. Barcode scanning software could well cement this fact.

QRBall – The ‘Alternative’ Paintball Experience

February 25th, 2009

Twitter is a great source for QR-Code innovations and news. Recently while doing some research, I came across Twitter member stoop_uk and his idea to combine QR-Codes with paintballing; QRBall.

The Idea

  • You get a number of users with a QR-Code reader on their mobile phone.
  • A area of warzone is set out.
  • All users wear a T-Shirt with a QR-Code printed on it.
  • You then have to go around capturing everyone’s QR-Code with your mobile phone.
  • If shot, the QR-Code decodes on the users device and sends a text message to the person you shot advising them they are out the game.

Genius if you ask me. Simply another great innovative idea for using QR-Codes. I wonder if anyone has anything like this going in Asia?

Got an Idea?

Why don’t you match stoop_uk and send us in your own innovative idea to use QR-Codes.

QR-Code Reader Compatibility Update

February 24th, 2009

I have recently updated the list of compatible models of mobile phone with our selected list of QR-Code readers.

Mobile-Barcodes now lists all compatible models for the following QR-Code readers:

Altogether, there is over 400 models of mobile phone that can download one of the 8 QR-Code readers. That’s a whole load of scanning folks!

Compatibility Engine

We are in the process of generating a more effective way of finding a compatible reader by developing a QR-Code compatibility engine. Upon completion, you can then simply select your mobile phones manufacturer, model and then be presented with a list of readers. Hopefully this should make everything that little bit more user-friendly. Expect this within the next few days.

Submit a QR-Code Reader

Know of a QR-Code reader we have not featured? Get in touch with us and we will review it. Adopt QR-Codes

February 11th, 2009

When checking the Mobile Barcodes website referalls in Google Analytics, a particular referall caught my eye in the form of an online newspaper from Philadelphia, United States called Temple News.

Tempe News are clearly innovative and interested in bridging the gap between traditional and online and they, and of course we beleive the best way to plug this gap is via QR-Codes.

Well done to Temple News for the spotting the potential of QR-Codes and promoting their use within their newspapers website.

Personally, I thought QR-Codes would first become mainstream in the English speaking world (Asia are already all over mobile barcode technology) via newspapers. I think Google spotted this early when they developed their traditional advertising platform called Google Print Ads. Unfortunitely, Google has become subject to the economic climate like any other company and recently axed this marketing innitative.

QR-Code Video

Guess what, Temple News even went the extra mile and created an impressive video outlining how to make use of QR-Code technology and posted it on YouTube. Watch closely folks and you will be able to see the mention of Mobile Barcodes in the video as a useful resource for finding a QR-Code reader. Thanks for the mention Temple News and I hope QR-Codes work well for your newspaper.

Optiscan QR-Code Reader by Airsource Ltd

February 9th, 2009

Airsource LTD based in Cambridge, England are a mobile software development company that have developed their very own QR-Code reader called Optiscan.

Optiscan is based on Google’s ZXing, an open source QR-Code reader. Optiscan have tweaked the functionality of Google’s ZXing to remove the need for selecting when to scan the QR-Code. Apparently, Airsource LTD have also made alterations to the image processing library which should make the capturing of the QR-Code more accurate.

The Optiscan QR-Code Reader is now available from the Apple iTunes app store at $4.99, £2.99, or €3.99. If you are willing to pay money for a QR-Code reader, Optiscan is for you, otherwise, Mobile-Barcodes suggest you try a free alterntive QR-Code reader.

Expect to see a wide variety of new QR-Codes developed based on Google’s open source ZXing project. It is a great open source application that can easily be tailored to your needs.