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What are QR codes?

Take a look around you and you’ll see these funny black and white squares. Have you ever wondered what they were for? You’ll see them all over the place, particularly placed in advertisements. They are called Quick Response codes or QR codes for short and are not unlike the barcodes you find on many products you buy at your supermarket. QR codes however can contain much more information than just a number and they are ideally suited for scanning with a mobile phone or tablet camera. All you need to do is just download a free app to do so.

Why scan them?

There are a number of reasons you might want to scan a QR code, apart from making life easier for you, and these are mainly related to what the code was created for. For example, the QR code shown in the graphic at the top right of this page will take you to my website’s user registration page. It saves you the time and fiddling typing in the web address and finding the page for yourself. I also use QR codes to offer customers discount points, I create a slightly different one for each place I advertise so I can track where my advertising is working for me.


What can they be used for?

Other things that QR codes can usefully be used for include:

  • Scan a calendar event into your calendar app.
  • Add GPS location for your sat nav.
  • Scan contact details into your phonebook.
  • Scan wireless access point information (works on Android only).
  • To call a telephone number.
  • To send an SMS (text) message.
  • To send an e-mail.
  • Links to various social networking sites.
  • Initiate an online payment using Paypal or IBAN/BIC codes.

Make your own

I know some people already that have printed their own personal contact cards to hand out to their friends. We have a drawer full! Wouldn’t it be nice if they also included a nice QR code to print alongside the written details, that way, you would be able to scan that information straight into your mobile phone contacts, the information is always then at hand—so no need to keep that card!

Here’s how, simply visit the following website:

and then fill in your details and hit the generate button. This is a fairly simple generator web site, there are others which allow you to add even more detail including a picture, business telephone numbers and much more.

Some to scan

Hopefully now that you’ve managed to install a scanning app you’ll want to test it out, here are just a few more for you to try out. If you’d like to find out more about how you can make use of QR codes, please do get in touch at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


QR Code Reader googleplayicon  QR Code Reader & Scanner applestoreicon



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