Originally designed in the mid 90’s to help track Toyota parts. The humble QR code can contain 100 times more information than similar sized bar codes. They can keep working with up to 30% damage – this also happens to be the ratio required to remain readable when altering the look of a QR code to customise it.
QR codes are now considered fair game to advertisers and marketers. In the pursuit to connect with customers this unsightly little ‘pixel box’ has started to show up on everything from bananas to condoms. This ‘must-have’ technology seems to be the latest solution to all of our marketing problems. Aren’t all customers wandering the street with smart phone at the ready to scan every QR code in sight? This blog picturesofpeoplescanningqrcodes has garnered hundreds of fans (I am sure more people have visited the blog than scanned QR codes). And even if you are lucky to snag a QR code scan, what content are you pointing consumers to? In most cases it’s the latest campaign material or worse a web address. Seems funny that advertisers are looking at every way possible to connect with consumers and then palming them off to a website that gives them no unique user experience. Surely a URL is just as memorable and accessible?
I d really like to see something that makes me go ‘wow that’s a really cool use of the QR code’ but with augmented reality banging on the doorstep I think the QR time is long gone. Soon smart phones will be able to recognise imagery and deliver additional content to the consumer. Ikea seems to always have their finger on the pulse when it comes to delivering content to customers. Check out this catalogue that uses augmented reality to show customers inside the printed furniture.
This has all come about because recently I ve seen some pretty bizarre placements of QR codes. And I wondered what the most ridiculous was… Temporary baby tattoos? Aeroplanes? Revolving billboards? Bus sides? On a website…. That leads you to that website? Well the most bizarre I ve come across – on a grave marker… yes QR codes are keeping the dream alive for dead people! For some more amusing QR codes check out wtfqrcodes.com