QR Code Reader
The quick response code is only valuable if the audience is capable of reading and interpreting the code. The codes require a scanner or smart phone capable of photographing and reading the code. UPC barcode scanners are not QR code ready but numerous API and smart phone applications are easily downloaded to interpret and read the QR codes. Many of the applications are free to download and ready to use in less than one minute. The cost and load time of the reader is dependent on your phone brand and data plan. Independent QR scanners are available for commercial retail use but the phone systems are equally capable of reading the codes and connecting the data with a greater retail network.
QR codes containing sensitive information are encrypted and require a reader programmed with the decryption algorithm to extract data from the code. The encrypted QR codes do not require a special reader but the reader must be programmed with the specific algorithm designed to shield the information. The system essentially acts like password protection and is used to attach visas to passports in some countries. Encrypted quick response codes are ideal for distributing products after the point of purchase and communicating information to a select group of individuals.
Many of the common QR readers are apps designed only for the QR code but some programs read additional codes. Advanced reading programs are designed to scan Data Matrix codes, UPC bar codes, ISBN codes and custom codes designed by different companies. The versatile readers are more common in the retail and distribution sectors where multiple code styles are used to separate and categorize products and parts.
The QR readers available are typically specific to the phone brand but several broad scope readers are available in multiple formats. The iPhone reader is specific to the iPhone only as is the SemaCode Reader. The QuickMark, BeeTagg, ScanLife, Kaywa, Upcode and Neo readers work with most smart phone models. The Google reader works with QR and UPC codes but is only compatible with the Android model phone.
Selecting a Reader
Choosing a reader is an easy process for the average smart phone owner because any of the compatible programs are acceptable. Retail workers will want a program that reads UPC and QR codes. Both codes are used at retail outlets and the specialized readers are ideal on the job. Choose the code with the most applications for work related scanning.