No more tap to scan! Optiscan now launches straight into scan mode for ease of use.
Icon and UI redesign. We thought it could do with a sprucing up, so we tweaked the look to be more up-to-date and utilitarian. What do you think?
Enhanced scanning engine. With every release of Optiscan we tweak the scanning software more and more to cope with the plethora of designer codes and locations. After testing, we scan more QR Codes than any other app!
Scan from clipboard.“I can’t scan from my mobile browser!”, we heard you cry. Well now you can!
QR Codes for Events. We wanted to include this last time, but we just weren’t happy enough with the way they where dealt with. Now we are!
We hope you enjoy using this version of Optiscan. Show us what you’ve done with it and we’ll pass it on!
Last night, during the 19:30 ad break, More 4 ran a sting for their sister channel, 4Music. The surreal set included a QR code on a TV in the left hand corner and, in a change from previous televised QR codes, the voiceover dialogue was doing nothing more than hinting that the viewer “knew what to do”. The code was onscreen for the majority of the 30 second sting. When scanned the code takes you (via a bit.ly shorturl) to an article on the 4Music site where you are congratulated for being tech-savvy and ‘rewarded’ with a free N-Dubz download. Sounds good, right? Almost. Just two minor points:
The website isn’t mobile.
This is supposed to be the (quote) “new and improved” 4Music site – so why is there no mobile optimised version? Surely a consideration for your average site now, but a must for a youth oriented site such as this.
The track cannot be downloaded on all mobile phones.
Yes, if you are running Android or Windows 7 there should be no problems but, in a about face from the usual turn of events, iPhone users are denied the free track. Why is that? It could have easily been included on iTunes, no?
It’s a shame to see a QR code campaign that looked promising to begin with, be let down yet again by the end result.
Everyone seems to be talking about a guy getting a QR code tattoo, from Paris based artist K.A.R.L., that scans to reveal an animated version of said tattoo. It’s a video created for Scotch whiskey producer Ballantine’s’‘Leave an impression’ campaign, designed to coherce a younger market to drink their product. All well and good ,except for one small fact – it’s not a QR code!
The tattoo is of an EZ Code, a proprietary 2D code format from Scan Life and is not a QR code at all. We were amazed to see the number of people retweeting and blogging about the story, with not one single person picking up on this salient fact. What gives? Nobody thought to scan it? Nobody recognised the different pattern style?!
This morning I finally took delivery of the 2011 Five Euro coin from the Koninklijke Nederlandse Munt (Royal Dutch Mint). This coin has received plenty of coverage over the last few weeks due to the inclusion of a QR code in it’s design – the first time we have seen the codes being used in such a permanent and far reaching way. Permanent in that these coins will be in circulation in the Netherlands long after many QR code campaign will have been and gone, far reaching in that they will pass through many hundreds of hands over their lifetime.
That’s all very interesting, but the big question for those of us who have been following the progress of QR code usage is, does it work? By that I don’t just mean, “Does it scan?”, but “Does it lead somewhere with added value?”. Does it give the user a reward for taking out their mobile phone, opening their scanning app (Optiscan for you iPhone users of course ;)) and capturing the QR code? Well, sort of.
When scanned, you are prompted to watch a short video. An overclocked journey in through the front door of the Mint leading to a bin full of the new coins, with a soundtrack straight from a suspense thriller. Odd, but better than an overly long video. Most people scanning the code (in the long term) probably wouldn’t be interested in the process of decision making and creation that led to the QR code use anyway (although a link to that on the page would be good). You can see the video by clicking the image to the right.
Then we are presented with the site – a non-mobile site! A bad start, perpetrating the most complained about aspect of many QR code marketing campaigns. You would think that, if they were going to add a QR code to something as important and representational as their own currency, the homework would have been done on how best to implement it. This can of course be rectified, and hopefully will, but will it have already put too many people off?
Once zoomed in, we can at least still play the game they have embedded here as it is not Flash based. It’s a simple game of memory, matching pairs of cards – all front or rear designs of commemorative Dutch coins. A nice enough distraction for a few minutes, but again, there is no further incentive. Where is my option to post my score online and share the link with friends? Maybe winning games could open up more of the website or other, more marketable incentives? What do you think?
It’s good to see QR codes used in this way, but I hope that the Royal Dutch Mint are paying attention and make suitable alterations to the landing page. There is also scope for them to change the destination over time, allowing for the QR code to have more longevity as people scan it to see where they are taken next.
So there I was, scanning for the latest in the world of QR codes and what should pop up? A mention of The Sunday Times recommending three QR code apps. Curiosity got the better of me so I paid the ferryman and jumped behind the paywall for a day to see this article for myself. Planet of the Apps is The Sunday Times apps blog reviewing “the best and the brightest” on smartphones. Yesterday they chose three apps to talk about QR codes and guess what? The only paid app being recommended was – Optiscan!
You may not have heard of SET Japan, but if you’ve seen some great looking QR codes around you’ll probably have seen their work. Producing designer codes for the likes of TIME magazine and Louis Vuitton, SET Japan are recognised as the ‘inventors’ of the designer QR code that is becoming so popular now. They created their first a few years back and have been involved in virtually every major new use of them since, working with companies such as Warbasse Design in the US recently.
With all their great experience of working with QR codes, it was with great pleasure and honour that we received an email from their development team praising Optiscan!
“We use a lot of readers when we are testing and the team is always looking for the fastest reader – it is like a badge of honor if you can bring in the best reader to a meeting – and we are all huge fans of your Optiscan reader. It is our go to app and the one we recommend to anyone looking to get clicking.”