Technology continues to evolve at a lightning-fast pace, making it easier and easier to complete tasks. The QR code is one innovation that's become more popular in recent years and can allow you to do many things just by capturing an image with your phone. To help you reap the benefits of QR codes, our team here at Hickory Villa senior living community in Omaha, NE, put together this handy guide.
A QR code is a square box filled with black shapes and lines. It looks like a barcode, but the image is more complex. QR stands for "quick response." The name refers to the fact that when you scan a QR code, your mobile phone or tablet will quickly complete an action. What might otherwise take several taps on your device can be done with a single step, thanks to QR codes.
How you scan a QR code depends on the device. In most cases, you just need to open the camera app. Make sure the camera is in outward mode rather than selfie mode. Then, position your device so you can see the QR code on the screen.
Your phone or tablet should automatically recognize the code, prompting it to ask you if you want to use the code. If nothing happens, try moving your device closer to or farther away from the code.
On older mobile devices, you may need to follow other steps to scan a QR code. Search online for your phone or tablet type and the phrase "how to scan QR codes" to get instructions.
QR codes have many uses. Read on to discover some of the many ways companies, organizations and websites may use them.
Many restaurants now make their menus accessible via QR codes. You may see a code posted in the window so you can find out what the business serves before you head inside. Establishments may also have a QR code at the table for you to scan rather than using printed menus.
Developers can let you download their apps with just a quick scan of your phone. The QR code directs you to a website that automatically downloads the app for you, so you don’t have to search for it in your device’s app store. Keep in mind that you may need to enter your passcode or password into your phone to finish installing the app.
One of the most popular uses of QR codes is website navigation. Companies may place QR codes on print advertisements, display them on TV commercials or include them on employee business cards. When you scan the code, your mobile device directs you to the website, so you don’t have to type anything in.
With some QR codes, you can sign in to accounts for online banking, social media, shopping and bill payments. Hotels and other businesses with secure Wi-Fi networks may give you a QR code to scan to connect. Sign-in QR codes can save you the hassles of having to remember and enter passwords.
QR codes can let you enter information into your phone automatically. Medical providers and other professionals may give you a QR code to scan to automatically update your mobile device calendar with an appointment date or time. Some business cards will have codes to enter contact information into your device, so you don’t have to add it to your address book manually.
Some products have QR codes on their tags or labels or inside their owner’s manuals. Scanning the code lets you register your product, make a warranty claim and get usage instructions.
QR codes are an exciting innovation and can be a handy tool when used properly. Follow these tips to make the most of them.
Most QR codes are legitimate and will take you to trustworthy sites. Still, it’s wise to check that a site is real before you enter any personal information. Double-check the web address. Does it match the official website of the company or organization? Is the logo correct? Is the page free of misspellings and typos? When in doubt, navigate to the site directly by typing in the URL address.
Mobile device operating systems get frequent updates. By downloading them, you can benefit from new features and ensure your phone has the latest protection from malware and spyware. Whenever your mobile device prompts you to update, accept the request to ensure you can continue to easily and safely scan QR codes.
If you scan a QR code and reach a website you’re not familiar with, be cautious about providing personal information like your address, Social Security number or credit card number. While the site may be legitimate, it’s best to do a little research about the company so you can protect yourself from identity theft.
Your mobile device may have difficulty scanning QR codes in a dark room. Turn on more lights or head outside if you experience difficulty scanning codes. Keeping your hand as straight and steady as possible may also help.