What is a Visual QR Code?

 What is a Visual QR Code?

A Visual QR Code is More Than a Blocky Image

There are many types of QR codes available that offer different functionality and design. One of the newest forms that these barcodes have taken is the visual QR code. These codes are still very new to the scene, so you’re not likely to have seen them plastered all over. They are, however, much more visually dynamic than traditional 2D QR codes. In some aspects, a visual QR code can barely be considered a traditional QR code. If not for the blocky pattern that QR codes have become well known for, this would certainly be the case.
Visualead is one of the pioneers of the visual QR code. The company specializes in creating visually stunning codes that incorporate various artistic elements, such as logos. One of the most striking aspects of the codes designed by Visualead is the fact that the logos and artistic elements incorporated into their QR codes do not ruin the functionality of the codes themselves. Each visual QR code made by the company is fully functional and can be scanned with any QR code scanning application.

Visual QR Codes Defy Convention

The concept of a visual QR code is very simple in that you are introducing a design to a 2D barcode that does not negatively affect the functionality of the code in any way. While the idea is simple, putting it into practice is much more difficult. A visual QR code is very different from a typical QR code logo. A QR code logo incorporates a small logo into the traditional design of a QR code. The logo often needs to be significantly smaller than the code in order to not interfere with the code’s functionality. There are no such size limits to the artistic elements associated with a visual QR code, however, making these barcodes significantly more dynamic.
The blocky patterns of a typical QR code are not simply a design faux pas. These patterns are responsible for the information associated with the code. When a QR code scanner identifies a code, it deciphers the information that is represented by the code’s pattern. The four squares at the corners of every QR code design are used to accurately position the information, making it easier for a scanner to register a code. A visual QR code uses a different design scheme for its patterns, turning the common block seen with most QR codes into smaller squares with soften edges. These squares alternate in color depending upon the image they are set against in order to ensure their visibility to a QR code scanner.

A New Generation of QR Codes is Dawning

QR codes have received criticism in the past because of their somewhat visually unappealing design. While this had not stop many advertisers from using the codes, some consumers have been uninterested in the codes because of the way they look. This has also led some businesses to avoid the codes so as not to use something that consumers are not comfortable with. Some believe that QR codes are only a step away from extinction because old style codes do not support any kind of visual flare, leaving people to stare at the same black and white blocky patterns all the time.
Visual QR codes, on the other hand, solve this problem. These codes can provide businesses with a new way to engage mobile consumers. The codes are visually appealing, so there is no concern regarding consumers turning away because they don’t think a code is pretty enough. Moreover, the code actually work. When a visual QR code is scanned, it provides people with the information and content they have come to expect from any other kind of QR code. Furthermore, advertisers using a visual QR code will not have to worry about how well the code meshes with their marketing materials. This could be especially useful in print campaigns found in magazines.

Visualead Taking the Reins of Innovation

Visual QR codes are still in a state of infancy, but they have already managed to receive a great deal of acclaim. They are often considered the next generation of QR codes, and for good reason, due to the fact that they offer an entirely new experience for those using them.
Here is a demo video on how to create a visual QR code through Visualead:

Visualead is not alone in the field of visual QR codes, of course. Microsoft has launched its own version of the QR code that it calls the Microsoft Tag. These Tags feature colorful patterns that contain information in much the same way QR codes do. Tags can be scanned with a smart phone or other mobile device to gain access to digital content and data. The Tags have become somewhat popular because of their visually appealing nature and their functionality.
Here’s an example of a Microsoft tag campaign:

Apart from Microsoft and Visualead, Paperlinks designs creative QR codes that it calls Designer Codes. These codes feature a wide variety of artistic elements without sacrificing anything in the way of functionality. Visual QR codes have also been used in the recovery effort following the 2011 Fukushima Disaster in Japan. SET, a creative agency based in Japan, developed an artistic QR code that aimed to raise funds for the Japanese Red Cross.
Visualead is one of the few organizations that offers a visual QR code generator for free. The company boasts of more than 67,000 visual QR code designs created, accounting for over 59,000 scans. The Visualead codes have been used by several large companies, including Facebook, Twitter, and Coca-Cola, in the past, all the great success. You can certainly expect to see more visual QR codes pop up as advertisers begin to see the merit of these innovative and effective QR codes.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Visualead