You may have noticed that recently all my blog posts have included a strange square black & white image at the beginning. If you are wondering what they are, they are known as a QR Code, a 2 dimensional barcode used to store information to be scanned by your mobile phone device. Just recently I have realised the potential of using QR Codes. I first read about them when reading a magazine and at the bottom of each article was a QR Code. The text indicated that I could scan this in to my phone. I set about searching iTunes for a QR Reader and chose Red Lazer, a free QR Code and barcode reader. Scanning the QR Code was so simple and directed me to a stunning video clip relating to the article I was reading.
Realising the potential for QR Codes I set about doing some research into what they are and how they can be used, and was quite amazed to find that I appeared to be somewhat behind the times as they have been used quite extensively, especially in Japan and the USA for quite a while. Further research showed exactly what information they can store. Initially I believed they were a quick link to a website URL, but they can store a whole host of information including e-mail addresses, vCard, vCalendar, Twitter & Facebook profile names to name but a few. The one below has my vCard information to store my contact details in your phone.
Primarily I can see the potential for printed material and the use of QR Codes. It is an easy way for mobile technology to be used to collate information without having to manually type the information in to your mobile device. I can see that a QR Code is likely to be included on business cards, appointment cards, and any printed material to direct you to where further information exists online. It is likely to also be used for promotions, and limited time offers.
So give it a go. If you do not have a barcode reader on your mobile, download one for free. Like I say, for the iPhone I use Red Lazer, but I believe there are lots of different barcode readers to choose from.
- You see a code,
- Scan the code,
- Your phone decodes the code
- Your phone displays the text, link