Why QR Codes Are Poised to Hit the Mainstream!

QR Codes 101

If you’re not yet familiar with QR codes, they’re similar to the barcodes used by retailers to track inventory and price products at the point of sale. The key difference between the two is the amount of data they can hold or share.

When you scan or read a QR code with your iPhone, Android or other camera-enabled Smartphone, you can link to digital content on the web; activate a number of phone functions including email, IM and SMS; and connect the mobile device to a web browser.

The ability of QR codes to connect people with each other and to multimedia digital content is very useful for businesses and consumers alike.

The QR code, or quick response code, is simply a two-dimensional bar code that came into being in 1994 and found a large audience in Japan. Stateside, however, QR codes — while clever for tying real-world objects to online content — have always remained on the outskirts of public awareness.

Nonetheless, we’ve seen QR codes employed for creative purposes. The Detroit Red Wings interactive programs and the giant QR codes in Times Square come to mind. Each of these serves as prime examples of how QR codes could be on the verge of their breakout moment.

What the technology needs in order to finally make it to the mainstream are applications that take the nerd-factor out of the QR code scan, and drive home the potential rewards of seeing a code, scanning it, and then engaging with the served-up content.