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Barcode vs QR Code

Barcodes and QR (quick response) codes are amongst the most important technologies in the world. Each tool provides individuals and businesses excellent tools for a wide range of functions. A barcode is a vertical pattern that stores information. A QR code, on the other hand, is a pattern of codes that store information in all directions. Therefore, a QR code is able to store significantly more data than a typical barcode. Barcodes are mostly used in retail shops as they allow shops to sell products and manage inventory easily. A QR code provides a better alternative for information management, which can be used for activities that require larger storage capacity.

Definition of a Barcode

A barcode can be defined as a visible alternating black and white machine recognizable information-carrying tool, which allows for the storage of product information in 1 dimension. In most cases, the parallel black patterns of a barcode vary in width. Barcodes are commonly seen on the packages of almost all products. A barcode allows for the management of a product's information across the market chain. Within each barcode is contained information about a particular product. Such information includes the name of the manufacturer, type of product, and the price of the item. The information within a barcode is usually read using a barcode scanner.

Definition of a QR Code

A QR code can be described as a kind of barcode that allows for the storage of information in 2 dimensions. A QR code, just like a barcode, contains machine recognizable information, which is presented by interconnected horizontal and vertical lines. A QR code can be used to store location information, website URL, and much more. The use of smartphones has made the use of QR code considerably widespread. As such, the cameras of smartphones can easily be used as QR code scanners through various types of applications. Therefore, a user can use their smartphones to unlock the information stored within a QR code.

Key Differences Between a Barcode and a QR Code

Although barcodes and QR codes perform the same function, there are still key differences between the two codes. These differences are presented below.


The most obvious difference between these two codes is their pattern. A typical barcode contains simple vertical black and white lines. However, a QR code contains a complex pattern, which is quite different from a barcode.

2.Store Capacity

A barcode is a 1-dimensional code. As a result, it is unable to store a large amount of information. A QR code, on the other hand, is a 2-dimensional code. Therefore, it can store significantly more data than a typical barcode within the same area.

3.Error Management

Barcodes have a greater margin of error. Therefore, there is a high degree of error when reading information about a typical barcode. A QR code, on the other hand, has a smaller margin of error. This characteristic makes QR codes the more desirable type of barcode.

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