There applications of barcoding in the business world are seemingly innumerable, especially as advances in data analytics tools and software give more value to the information barcodes can provide. More organizations than ever are deciding to buy or rent barcode scanners, as well as other equipment like barcode readers, barcode printers and tablets, and invest in barcode software that can help with key organizational processes like asset tracking, attendance tracking, inventory control and labeling. The right combination of barcode hardware and barcode software has been a boon to businesses of all sizes operating in a diverse set of industries.
The applications of barcoding, interestingly, are also beginning to extend beyond the insular world of businesses, governments and non-profit organizations. More organizations and even individuals are starting to broaden the horizons of the barcode to see how it can improve the efficiency of everyday life for customers and for the general public. Thus far, some of these creative barcoding endeavors have proven to change the way we do things in ways that were unimaginable only decades ago. Here is a look at some ways barcodes have become entrenched in our daily lives.
Anyone who has traveled recently is familiar with how online booking systems have changed the way we travel. When people travel now they can print their own boarding pass or even bypass the use of a physical document altogether by simply presenting their ticket on a smartphone. Of course, all of this wouldn’t be possible without barcodes. It is the barcode on the physical boarding pass and the mobile barcode on the smartphone boarding pass that is scanned by airports and airlines to help you get to your destination as smoothly as possible. It was innovations in the world of barcoding, accompanied by innovations in the broader world of technology and computers that made this new way of traveling possible. Beyond the airport, ticketing in general has been affected in the same way. You can now print your own tickets or show a ticket on a mobile screen to be admitted to movie theaters or nearly any other place requiring an admission ticket.
Prior to barcodes, advertising was strictly a one-way street of communication. Advertisers actively presented their message to customers who passively interpreted the message, whether it was an image, a group of words, a jingle or some other form of advertising. Barcodes, however, are starting to change the dynamic of the relationship between advertisers and potential customers. By placing a barcode within an advertisement, a special type of barcode known as a QR code that viewers can scan with their smartphones, advertisers are now able to provide customers with an interactive advertising experience. Smartphone apps can read the barcodes and take the customer to a page where they can learn more information about a product or be given access to a special offer, among other things. These barcodes are also being placed in print newspapers as a way to bridge the divide between print and online news and in a variety of other ways that are only getting started creating a more active consumer experience.