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What is a QR code, can it do Good Things for your business?

Advertisements have become a part of our everyday lives. It gives us an idea of the many products made available for consumer use, from the massive billboards on top of buildings to a page in our favorite magazines. Recently though these odd small square’s with 3 large sized squares on the corners and scattered dots […]
April 4, 2013 10:00 am

What is a QR code, can it do Good Things for your business?

Advertisements have become a part of our everyday lives. It gives us an idea of the many products made available for consumer use, from the massive billboards on top of buildings to a page in our favorite magazines. Recently though these odd small square’s with 3 large sized squares on the corners and scattered dots on the inside have started to appear. It’s a good talking point for tech nerds, but do you know what it is? This square is called as a QR code and in this article, we will explain what a QR code is and how it works.

Finally, we will look at if its worth the effort, and how it could benefit your business.

What is a QR Code Explained:

Let’s try to define the QR code in a much simpler context. A QR Code, or otherwise known as Quick Response Code, is a type of 2 dimensional matrix barcode that has been used more often in recent times. A QR code is much more sophisticated for it can be decoded or ‘read’ with the use of a smart phone and other handheld devices that have cameras.

The QR Code was invented in Japan by Denso Wave, a subsidiary of the world car giant, Toyota. Originally, the main purpose as to why the quick response code was created was to track down the quantity of cars during the manufacturing process and the contents of every QR code can be decoded at high speed. It has been widely used in Japan since about 1994. It more recognised and used on the other parts of the world more recently.

The QR Code is much more useful compared to the conventional barcode because it can store more information (URL Links, GEO coordinates, text) despite its minute size. So there’s no saying that this innovation may very replace the barcode system in the near future.

How do I get a QR code?

They are surprisingly easy to create with a number of online services that will assist in the process. Check out http://goqr.me/ and http://qrcode.kaywa.com/. Codes can trigger a number of events such as opening a website, creating a new contact, template an SMS, dial a phone number, or simply provide a message to the user.

How A QR Code Is Decoded?

One of the most convenient features of a QR code is that it can be read easily with the use of any modern cellular phone that has a camera. You don’t have to use any bulky scanner just to interpret the information embedded inside. Just use your phone, take a picture of the QR code and in no time it will decipher its contents, often leading you to a web page. A barcode can be read by passing it on the narrow beam of light from the scanner. On the other hand, the QR code being a 2 dimensional code is being digitally analyzed by a processor. With the use of the 3 large squares and fourth smaller square, the image is then converted into normal size. The dots are then converted in to binary numbers to further decode the information.

iPhones do not have a scanner built in, you will need to install an app such as RedLaser to read the code and interpret it. The same applies for Google Android phones where an app such as QR Barcode reader is required.

Advantage Of Using QR Codes:

The use of QR codes has been expanding because of its efficiency. How can this simple mark be a tool for successful advertising and success in business? Here are some points to consider:

– Modern Advertising – A QR code can be a tool for giving a whole new experience into understanding a certain product. If they are interested to know more about it, all they need to do is use their phone an get more information instead of being limited to reading a print material.

– Offline/Online link – QR codes can serve as a bridge between the offline and the online world. Just simply taking a picture of the code will then direct you immediately to the website for the relevant information without having to type or search anything.

– Accessibility – QR codes can be beneficial in business in such a way that they can be more accessible to the people. They can relay more messages faster with the use of the QR code, making the business more recognizable which is essential for growth and success.

– Various information to be stored – A QR code can be used in many ways such as storing info about Maps, a business company’s overview, even to a mere profile of you. It is a medium to access more knowledge about a product, service, and organisations.

Conclusion:

The QR Code is truly a remarkable invention that most of us often fail to recognise. It can bridge the complex leap with information from a print to online content. The challenge is that most people don’t know how to use the image, and the lack of a built in QR reader on mobile devices makes them too much effort. In short, they started out as a novelty, and really are still just that. Worse still a recent study by Archrival of 500 students across 24 US college campuses showed that only 21.5% of them understood how to scan a QR code. If the future of our society doesn’t get it, then what hope is there for the rest of us?

Finally, technology innovation is now at the point where we can recognise a picture, or part of a picture and use that to take us to a web page or initiate another action. It’s not far away when this concept will be the death of the QR code.

 

QR code survey on 24 US colleges

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