Barcode scanning technology has been around for many years and has become the most widely used tool in a range of business operations. Today, without the tagging ability of barcodes and RFID tags, a large quantity of daily production of goods and services would come to a halt. To stay competitive, businesses that want to win should use the right tools, and barcode reading technology is at the heart of this choice.

Barcode scanners have come a long way since they were first introduced. Devices that read barcodes are now used in virtually every industry, for businesses that need to capture data reliably and quickly. Barcode scanning technology is critical in transforming how data is captured and processed far more efficiently and error-free.

The integration of barcode scanning technology into business processes is essential to achieving operational efficiency and accuracy. With barcode readers, suppliers, employees, customers, and other stakeholders can quickly locate products and efficiently manage information by reading multiple barcodes at once. There are several different types of barcode scanners to choose from and the right one should be carefully selected based on individual needs. Companies need to consider factors such as device type, scan speeds, durability, price range, and compatibility with other systems when making this choice.

Companies also have the option of investing in a wired or wireless barcode scanner depending on their requirements. A wired barcode scanner offers reliability and cost-effectiveness but limits mobility as it requires a physical connection to the computer or other devices to read barcodes. Wireless scanners, on the other hand, are more versatile and offer greater freedom of movement but can be more expensive.

For businesses with complex inventory systems or those in the retail sector, investing in a dedicated scanner for barcodes can be beneficial in the long run.

In addition, businesses need to decide whether they prefer all-in-one or dedicated barcode readers for their needs. An all-in-one barcode reader is capable of reading a multitude of barcode types and supports data entry from a variety of external sources.

Scan barcode images and formats anytime

Barcode Scanning Technology in the Time of Coronavirus-19

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses and industries have had to adapt to new safety protocols and social distancing measures to protect their employees and customers. Barcode scanning technology has played a vital role in this adaptation, providing a contactless way of processing transactions and tracking inventory. For example, in the retail industry, barcode scanning has allowed customers to use self-checkout machines, avoiding the need for direct contact with cashiers. In restaurants, QR codes on menus have allowed customers to view menus on their own devices, reducing the need for physical menus that could potentially spread the virus. Barcode scanning has also been vital in the healthcare industry, enabling hospitals to track and manage medical supplies and equipment, while also ensuring patient safety.

The benefits of barcode scanning technology in the time of COVID-19 are numerous. Firstly, it helps to minimise direct contact between people, reducing the risk of transmission of the virus. Secondly, it improves efficiency, enabling businesses to manage inventory and track orders more accurately, which is especially important during times of high demand. Additionally, barcode scanning can help to improve overall safety and hygiene, as it reduces the need for physical contact with surfaces and reduces the potential spread of germs. Overall, barcode scanning technology has proven to be an invaluable tool in navigating the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing businesses and industries to operate safely and efficiently.

QR Codes Leading the Barcode Scanning Technology

This survey by Statista showed that 18.8% of users from the UK and the US strongly agreed that there was a visible increase in the use of QR codes. In short, the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic has helped start a worldwide revolution in the usage of QR codes.

The growing familiarity with QR codes is not surprising at all since it is one of the best and easiest ways to connect the digital and physical worlds. QR codes can deeply penetrate the smartphone market. This makes it one of the most invaluable ways that the public can gain access to online content.

Additionally, QR codes make it easier for companies and governments to track and trace the movement of consumers. Businesses that continue to operate during the pandemic can also easily show products and services to customers through QR codes. In the United Kingdom, through the National Health Service, designated locations in certain industries are required to display NHS QR code posters. This way customers with the NHS Covid-19 app can “check-in” as an alternative way of providing their contact information to a venue. In case a person who visited the venue tests positive for the virus, other visitors will be alerted through an app on their device that is QR code enabled.

QR Codes


RFID tags (Radio Frequency Identification) are indeed a popular choice for warehousing and asset-tracking applications. Unlike a traditional barcode reader, which requires line-of-sight to be scanned, RFID tags can be read from a distance using radio waves. This means that RFID tags can be read through walls or packaging, making it easier and faster to inventory and track items.

RFID tags consist of a small electronic chip and antenna, which can store and transmit data wirelessly to an RFID reader. The data on an RFID tag can include unique identifiers, product information, and even location data.

RFID technology has many benefits for commercial use, including:

  1. Improved inventory accuracy: With RFID tags, inventory data can be updated in real-time, eliminating the need for manual data entry and reducing the risk of errors.

  2. Faster inventory counts: RFID tags can be read much faster than barcodes, reducing the time and cost required for inventory counts.

  3. Increased productivity: Employees can quickly locate and track items using RFID tags, reducing the time spent searching for items and improving overall productivity.

  4. Enhanced security: RFID tags can be used to monitor and track the movement of valuable assets, reducing the risk of loss or theft.

However, it’s important to note that RFID technology also has some limitations and challenges. For example, the range of RFID tags is limited and can be affected by interference from other devices or materials. Additionally, the cost of RFID tags can be higher than traditional barcode labels, which may not be practical for all applications.

NFC – Near Field Communication

NFC technology has been gaining popularity over the years and is being used in various applications beyond just mobile payments. For example, it can be used for access control, transportation ticketing, loyalty programs, and even as a means of exchanging contact information. NFC tags can be embedded in physical objects like an image, posters, flyers, and product packaging, allowing users to simply tap their phone on the object to receive more information or complete a specific action.

In addition, NFC technology is becoming more versatile with the introduction of new features and capabilities. For instance, it can now support bi-directional communication, enabling two devices to exchange data in both directions. This makes it possible for devices to share files, photos, and other data, or even establish a peer-to-peer network without the need for an internet connection.

The use of NFC technology is also being explored in healthcare, where it can be used for patient identification and medication management. NFC-enabled wristbands or ID cards can be used to track patient information and monitor their medication intake, reducing the risk of errors and improving overall patient safety.

Furthermore, with the COVID-19 pandemic prompting a shift towards contactless interactions, NFC technology has become even more relevant. It can be used for contactless payments, touchless access control, and even for digital contact tracing. As a result, we are likely to see even greater adoption of NFC technology in the coming years, as business and individual users seek out more convenient and safer ways to interact.

How Rugged Devices Play a Role In Barcode Scanning Technology

Rugged devices have significantly contributed to the advancement of barcode scanning technology. With the increasing need for mobility and the ability to perform tasks on the go, rugged devices have become a popular choice for businesses in various industries. They offer several advantages over traditional consumer devices, such as increased durability, longer battery life, and better performance in harsh environments. This has made them ideal for use in industries like logistics, manufacturing, and healthcare, where reliable and efficient data capture is crucial. Rugged devices like the Conker NS6, in particular, have become a go-to choice for businesses looking to leverage barcode scanning technology as they offer a range of add-ons and accessories to enhance their scanning capabilities.

In addition to their durability and versatility, rugged devices have become more affordable in recent years. This has made them more accessible for businesses of all sizes, not just those with large budgets. The cost savings from using rugged devices instead of traditional devices can be substantial, as rugged devices have a longer lifespan and require less frequent repairs and replacements. In fact, according to a study conducted by VDC Research, businesses that use rugged devices for their mobile workforce can save up to 46% on the total cost of ownership compared to non-rugged devices. With these cost savings and the many benefits of using rugged devices, it is no wonder that more and more businesses are making the switch to rugged technology.

Conker offers an extensive range of rugged devices with barcode scanning technology. To find out more contact us or book a fifteen-minute call with an experienced consultant.