We all know what the bar code is, many even scan items ourselves to price check at the super market or ring up our own items at the grocery store. Now you may be able to do so much more, including accessing a wealth of information directly from your mobile phone.
Esquire magazine will test this new functionality this March, by printing
Scanbuy codes in an editorial spread on “The Esquire Collection”, detailing the 30 items a man would need to get through life, each item printed with a small bar code that readers can scan and view a mobile menu including advice for the item and information on where the item can be purchased.
ScanLife, an application available free for the iPhone [iTunes link
], Blackberry, Androids and many other internet enabled phones, also can act as a bar code reader for ScanLife EZcodes anywhere, performing your own price comparisons on the go. Standard bar codes (QR-Codes) can also be read by an array of mobile applications
Similarly, SpyderLink has introduced a more basic technology that will work with any camera phone. Client logos surrounded by a ringed logo, called a SnapTag allow consumers to snap a photo of the image and send it. In reply the consumer receives information such as videos, event details, coupon codes or other pertinent information. SpyderLink is a patent pending technology already in use in magazines such as Entertainment Weekly and Everyday Food.
These shopping innovations may be the way to help print ads evolve into the interactive mobile phone, social networking generation and allow consumers with the much sought after control.