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QR Code barcodes

Quick Response, or QR, codes belong to the 2D barcode family and have become quite mundane. QR code barcodes are physically characterized with three distinctive squares on the corners of the image and one small square near the fourth corner. Small square dots are randomized throughout in order to encode information as needed. A QR code generator can encode multiple forms and great quantities of data, including binary, numeric, alphabetic, and special characters.

QR code barcode history

Denso Wave, a Japanese automotive company, and a subsidiary of Toyota patented QR code barcodes in 1994. The company required a code that could be easily and rapidly scanned due to the constant, fast movement of their production lines. Though they hold the patent to this day, it is under free license, meaning anyone can create and use this type of code.

QR code barcode uses

Aside from their first use in the automotive industry, QR codes have gained popularity in diverse areas. These types of barcodes can be found in mobile networking, as a method of coded payment, in entertainment and transportation tickets, transcripts and degrees, video games, and even on tombstones! A heavy use from advertising companies as a modern day marketing strategy have issued QR code barcodes in things such as newspapers, magazines, business cards, billboards, flyers, and more. Unfortunately, QR codes can also be given a negative use if a malicious code is encoded and later scanned by an unsuspecting person. QR codes should only be scanned if they derive from trusted sources.

Pros and Cons of QR code barcodes

Almost all smartphones with a camera can read QR barcodes easily. A few mobile phones have this feature installed already and will require no further applications to scan QR codes. The drawback is that smartphones can be expensive and certain phones may require additional camera-based imaging software, a QR barcode reading application for example, to be downloaded.

A QR code generator can be found online, sometimes even at no cost, with no further knowledge needed. QR code generator and reading software can also be downloaded to certain computers, tablets or desktops. However, if you wish to learn how to generate codes yourself, it will require training to fully understand.

QR codes can be scanned rapidly but require a steady hand. The ability to encode different types of data allows the code to be versatile and favorable to many industries. The data can still be decoded appropriately if the QR code is damaged, making it a good choice for many consumers. The exact format that a QR code embodies gives it room for damage and a degree of faultiness.

On the other hand, the visual appearance of QR code barcodes may not be pleasing to the eye so if an atheistic aspect is required on a certain product or area, another type of barcode may be considered. QR codes are expected to become smaller as time goes by and new technologies make it possible.

Design of QR Code Barcodes

The development of QR barcodes completely changed how barcodes are used. With the older equally spaced 1-dimensional barcodes, each code was developed to be read using light emitted as a thin beam. However, the reading process of QR barcodes is entirely different. QR barcodes are designed to be processed as digital images. Once processed, the information stored within the barcode is retrieved and used accordingly. As a result, QR barcodes are scanned using digital devices with image sensors, and image processing capabilities. The most common type of QR barcode scanners is smart portable devices. The camera of these portable devices scans the barcodes, and the information programmed is unveiled.

Storage Capacity

QR barcodes can store significantly more data than traditional 1-dimensional barcodes. The quantity of information that a user can program on a QR barcode is determined by the type of data. Nonetheless, the largest QR barcode can store a maximum of 7089 characters numeric data, 4296 characters alphanumerical, and 1817 characters kanji (Japanese characters) data. The largest QR barcode that can carry this quantity of data has a dimension of 177 x 177 modules (combined white and black squares). This type of QR is referred to as version 40.

QR Barcode for Payment

QR codes have changed how barcodes are used at POS. Several individuals around the world use QR barcodes to make payments for goods and services. This process is possible because QR codes can store financial information, such as card details and banking information. The barcodes generated are intended to operate with specific vendors for purchases within a particular threshold for security reasons.

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