Have you ever wondered what these boxes seem to do whenever you sight them? These barcodes are known as QR codes, the short term for quick response. They can store quite a lot of information and are very readable with smartphones and other digital devices. The possibilities of QR codes are unlimited even as Apple and other brands have incorporated them into their services.
Quick response codes are two dimensional, have multipurpose qualities and are ubiquitous. This technology is here to stay, especially in the marketing of products anywhere in the world, because it is easily accessed by all and sundry and businesses need to leverage it for all of its uses.
4.0 Uses/ Applications and Components of QR codes
History of QR Codes
The now increasingly present utility in most business organizations was created by a Japanese engineer named Masahiro Hara in the year 1994 primarily to track and monitor vehicles and parts, along with the production process of a subunit of Toyota motor company. It was later applied on tickets during musical concerts and sports events.
Hara and his teammates turned a 1-dimensional brand into a 2-dimensional grid and now about 80 percent of the world’s population are proud users of this handy means of gaining information.
Types of Quick Response Codes
QR codes come in different sizes and are majorly categorized into static and dynamic QR codes.
1. Static QR codes: this type of code does not allow alteration or modification of already stored data. A very good example is the Wi-Fi password on your mobile. These types of codes are only for a time by a user and they come free, and that’s because no price is attached to them. However, these codes cannot be tracked by the number of times they were scanned, the type of device used for scanning, and its location. The static QR codes store data directly inside the QR code graphic and are more complicated than dynamic because they are complex to scan and compare.
2. Dynamic QR codes: this type of barcode permits modification of stored data. It is easily tracked alongside with real-time scanning, monitoring to know the number of times scanned, their locations and the types of versions. It also uses a short URL which redirects to the destination and very effective in marketing campaigns.
Common examples of QR codes : Image QR codes, Social media QR codes, Audio QR codes, Website QR codes, Business card QR codes, Facebook QR codes, WhatsApp QR codes, E-mail QR codes, Telegram QR codes, PDF QR codes etc.
Uses of QR Codes
1. It enhances the shopping experience in Augmented Reality.
2. They are used for contactless payments.
3. They can track products and their information in a supply chain.
4. For technology, packaging and virtual manuals.
5. To increase application downloads by scanners.
6. To aid ordering.
7. To reveal discounts and coupon codes.
8. For easy access to customer reviews.
9. For easy sharing of information, e.g online menu, advertisement.
1. To generate marketing
2. For WiFi sharing: no need for passwords.
4. Real estate.
5. On-the-go connections business cards during corporate meetings/events.
6. In print media for document management and increased marketing success.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do these QR codes have an expiry date?
Yes, they do and this expiry date is limited to dynamic QR codes.
2. What is a QR code capacity?
It can store close to 7,089 digits, including punctuations and special characters.
3. Are all QR codes free to use?
not all, as static types of QR codes do not require payment, unlike the dynamic QR codes.
4. Do QR codes allow customization?
Certainly, they can be in any template, colour and shape to make them beautiful, but based on the requirements.
5. Is it possible to understand QR codes with your hands?
Yes, one can decipher it only with an understanding of algorithms and mask patterns.
6. Why do QR codes have only 3 squares?
Quick response codes possess 3 big squares at a3 corners which contain a finder pattern and an alignment pattern to be easily detected and interpreted.
7.What is a barcode?
A barcode is any set of machine readable parallel bars or circles varying in height, spacing and breadth of encoding data.