Nearly a third of the population in developed nations makes regular use of QR codes. These handy little bundles of squares let us visit websites, check in to venues, and share contact information. Because of how handy they are, they’re more ubiquitous than ever.
But despite that, not many people really understand what makes QR codes tick. What are QR codes? How do they work? And, most importantly, what are the benefits of QR codes?
Well, worry not, because we’re here to give you a quick rundown of the ins and outs of QR code technology.
Let’s check it out!
What Are QR Codes?
Back in the 90s, early QR codes were stamped onto car components so that factory workers could keep easy track of them. That’s right, the de facto standard method for pulling up restaurant menus on your phone was designed to track car parts.
But such a handy method of conveying information couldn’t be restricted for long. Pretty soon, other industries began noticing how useful it was to have a quick way of conveying web addresses, contact cards, and so much other data to people.
That’s how QR code technology as we know it was born.
Now, QR codes are everywhere. Got a new router recently? You probably have a QR code with it to allow easy logins. Been to a restaurant? The menu’s right there on the table, in the form of a QR code.
But that’s not the half of it. If you ever find yourself visiting China, you’ll quickly realize that there’s not a merchant in sight without a very visible QR code linked to their WeChat Pay account.
Really, payment-by-QR-code is practically China’s national currency at this point. Not bad for a tech that started with car parts!
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What Are the Benefits of QR Codes?
So why is it that these scannable squares are everywhere now?
Well, they’re easy to make, easy to understand, and easy to use.
No one has to pay to use QR codes. You can grab a generator (for example, this C# QR code generator), input whatever data you’d like to convert, and get a QR code. Anyone who sees it will immediately understand what it is, and thanks to the omnipresence of smartphones, almost everyone can use it.
Even better, QR codes are generally pretty safe. Sure, you could convert the URL of a nasty website to a QR code, but they can’t execute code in and of themselves. Scanning a QR code is a fair bit safer than downloading random apps.
Simplicity, security, and versatility: that’s what defines QR codes.
Go Forth and Scan!
So there you have it, a quick look at the history and benefits of QR codes. We’re all using QR codes every day since the pandemic struck, so it’s a good idea to get to grips with what makes them special.
And even if we weren’t, they’re a pretty cool invention regardless.
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