You see them everywhere; on billboards, on TV commercials, on the back of ketchup bottles, and on coffee cups. Yes, they look like disfigured and pixelated Andre the Giant paintings, but what exactly are QR-Codes and why do we see them everywhere?
QR-Code is the abbreviation for Quick Response Code, which is a suitable name for the purpose that a code serves. Through the use of any mobile device with a camera and Internet accessibility, a consumer can capture a QR image through a mobile app, which will instantly open what is being advertised in a separate web browser. The decoding software can easily detect the code and direct the mobile user to its endpoint; whether it is a mobile web address, an e-mail address, an MP3 download, or any other type of advertising.
Because of the QR-Code’s design, it is more versatile and easily accessible for the mobile user. Each code has a distinct composition, which all slightly differ. However, every code contains three small squares in corners of the code, which makes the code readable both horizontally and vertically at 360 degrees. This allows mobile participants to scan the code from any direction, and it will be recognized in an instant. QR-Codes contrast from standard barcodes for this reason, as barcodes can only be read horizontally. Barcodes also lack character count, with a maximum of 20 digits, whereas QR-Codes can contain as many as 7,089 digits to hold more data than barcodes.
QR-Codes have become extremely popular throughout the advertising spectrum, as any single person or company can post the code virtually anywhere. The codes are frequently seen in newspapers and magazines, buses, television commercials, and on packaged products by both small and large companies. Individual businesspeople can also take advantage of QR-Codes by putting them on business cards or taking out newspaper advertisements. Codes can be easily created through a QR-Code generator, which can be found through any search engine. QR-Code readers are also readily accessible as applications through the Apple App Store or Android Market, as well as mobile downloads through any desktop. Why waste time typing in a URL when a picture can do it for you?