Use Your Cell Phone to Scan Information

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker

We've all seen the bar codes that are used everywhere from grocery stores to department stores, from supply houses to small businesses. They are featured on nearly every product you buy.

Well...get ready for a new bar code called a QR code (Quick Response) that is going to begin having a huge impact on business information and how it is delivered to you via your cell phone in the coming year.
While conventional bar codes are capable of storing a maximum of approximately 20 digits, QR code is capable of handling several hundred times more information.

Expect to see QR codes in magazine advertisements, on billboards, web pages or even on someone's t-shirt. Once it is "scanned" to your cell phone, it can give you details about that business, or details about the person wearing the t-shirt, show you a URL which you can click to see a trailer for a movie, or it may give you a coupon which you can use in a local outlet.

The reason why QR codes are more useful than a standard bar code is that they can store (and digitally present) much more data, including URL links, pictures, GEO coordinates, and text. The other key feature of QR codes is that instead of requiring a chunky hand-held scanner to scan them, most recent cell phones can scan them. The full Wikipedia expalnation: click here.

For a short YouTube explanation by Marcello Di Pietro: click here

Any business, no matter how small or large, could use QR codes in a number of ways. You might auto generate one next to every product on your web site containing all the product details, the number to call and the URL link to the page so they can show their friends on their cell phone.

You could add one to your business card containing your contact details so its easy for someone to add you to their contacts on their cell phone, without any typing!

At the top of this blog is an example of my business contact information, including a photo, company logo and link to my website. All you need is the READER application which is available for download to your phone at several Internet sites. The QR code can be as small as your thumbnail or as large as a billboard.

Add your QR code to any print advertising, flyers, posters, invites, tv ads etc. containing:

  • product details
  • contact details
  • offer details
  • event details
  • a coupon
  • Twitter, Facebook, MySpace IDs
  • a link to a YouTube video
  • Or, in my case...Access to individual homes for sale, mortgage information, Open Houses, mapping and more.

What is it really all about? Well, some may not see it, but its yet another example of the blurring of the edges of media, as we all continue our journey to a completely connected world.

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Judi Boad

Incredible Jay!

That's really all I can say. Thank you for the explanation and links to the new age of networking and communication. I am passing this blog along via email (hardly seems appropriate!  :) )

Best regards,

Jan 24, 2010 01:21 AM
Julia Odom
Select Realty Professionals - Chattanooga, TN
Chattanooga Homes for Sale

Some companies have been using these '3-D' bar codes for years but this sounds like a step forward for everyone.

Jan 24, 2010 01:26 AM
Coldwell Banker Cutting Edge
Coldwell Banker Cutting Edge - Grants Pass, OR
"Your Proactive, Trusted Real Estate Advisor"

I am seriously blown away by all the new technology that is coming out and that is already out.  If we do not stay up to date on these changes we will get swallowed up by those who take the time to figure it out.

Thanks for letting us know what will be coming down the pipeline.

Jan 24, 2010 01:27 AM
Kathy Burke
Sensational Home Staging~~Danville, CA - Danville, CA
S.F. East Bay Home Staging just gets easier and easier when it comes to technology.  Thanks for sharing!!

Jan 24, 2010 01:58 AM
Tom Boos
Sine & Monaghan Realtors, Real Living - Grosse Pointe Farms, MI
Providing the very best of service to Sellers and

It's really unbelievable how technology has developed so quickly as to allow for this kind of application via our cells.

Jan 24, 2010 02:15 AM
Sam Miller
RE/MAX Stars Realty - Howard, OH
Knox County Ohio Real Estate Specialist

Jay - Neat technology for sure and services like Optiscan, RedLaser and the iPhone are changing the landscape of marketing. 

Jan 24, 2010 03:52 AM
Julia Maher
Nestings: Connecticut Home Staging and Model Homes - Fairfield, CT
Connecticut Home Stager

Hey, Jay - Thanks for the heads up on this new tech!  Happy Staging - Julie

Jan 26, 2010 11:52 AM
Carol Pease
JP & Associates Realtors - Bastrop, TX
CRS, Broker-Associate 512-721-6320

Hey Jay!  They were using these on badges here in Austin at the SXSW festival. 

Mar 21, 2010 07:50 AM
Jay Burnham

Hey Carol....that is so cool. Next step:on our real estate signs!

Mar 21, 2010 08:07 AM