As mentioned in an earlier post, Judy’s Book recently started sending local businesses Judy’s Book Featured Places window decals. These fancy decals are no ordinary window sticker, so we thought they deserved their own blog post to help explain the technology behind them.
The decals contain 2D barcode technology (QR Codes), which means that data is encoded in both the height and width of the barcode symbol (unlike regular one-dimensional barcodes), and the amount of data that can be contained in a single symbol is much greater than that stored in a one-dimensional barcode. In fact, thousands of alphanumeric characters can potentially be placed in a single symbol the size of a large postage stamp. So, the advantage of using 2D barcodes is that a large amount of easily and accurately read data can be associated with the item to which it is attached (in this case, a window decal).
When passersby have phones or PDAs that can read these barcodes, they can “snap” the barcode on the window decal and their phones/PDAs will uncover a secret message behind the code. This allows the phone to display useful information about the business, including new information that the business owner could choose to add if they’d like. For example, they can tell readers about a clearance sale that’s starting tomorrow, even if they’re passing by the store today.
You may be wondering which phones carry this 2D barcode “snap” technology. So far, we know that the iPhone and Google’s Nexus One phone support the technology, should users choose to download the app. We’ve personally tested these free apps and can confirm that they work.
These are the apps we recommend (feel free to add your own recommendations in the comments section):
- NeoReader (iPhone)
- QuickMark Mobile Barcode (iPhone)
We are still rapidly expanding this project and would love to get your feedback on it. Find us on Facebook, Twitter, and of course, our blog (here).
Window decal “tech support”
Lost or misplaced your window decals? Not to worry: just e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your business information and barcode ID (if applicable). Our team will verify the information and will send a replacement decal.
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