Have you recently read a publication or an advert and seen a ‘blotchy’ black and white pattern in the corner that resembles something between a barcode and one of those ‘magic eye’ pictures? You know the ones that you need to stare at for 5 minutes, then, all of a sudden an image appears (usually accompanied by a headache)?…
Chances are you’re looking at a QR code. “What is a QR code?” I hear you say.
A QR (or Quick Response) Code was invented by Toyota in 1994 to track vehicles in the manufacturing process, and unlike its less advanced cousin – the barcode, it uses advanced technology that when detected is converted into a two dimensional digital image by using an ‘image sensor’. It’s then processed and converted into binary code and detailed information can then be decoded from the scan.
So how does this help you, and why is it in the corner of your page?
Well since the advent of the ‘Smartphone’, every person is now carrying one of those fan-dangled image sensors around in their pocket……
A Smartphone uses its onboard camera to scan the QR code. This, accompanied by a freely downloadable ‘App’ will allow anyone to scan the QR code (that is usually related to the product or service that is there in hard print), and your phone will then open its internet browser and display the webpage that provides further information on the product and/or service. This can provide further, more detailed information that would not usually be contained in the ‘hard print’ of the page.
To get up and running with QR codes, simply go to your ‘App Store’ and download one of the hundreds of free QR code readers. Once it downloads, simply launch it from your Smartphone, scan the QR code on the page with the onboard camera, and provided you have internet access on your phone, you will be directed to the web page associated with that article. Easy!