QR, or quick response, codes are the next generation of the bar codes familiar to supermarket shoppers.
A QR code is able to store much more information than a traditional bar code because the data is stored in two dimensions (horizontal and vertical) as opposed to the single-dimension (horizontal) code found on soup cans.
These new square codes can store many different kinds of information, including web addresses, product information, maps, text messages, coupons or contact information that can easily be scanned into smartphones or computers. The Bee is now using QR codes in print and online to share more information and the latest updates with readers about news content and advertisements.
To take advantage of data stored in QR codes, you will need to install a scanner app on your smartphone or computer. These programs will then use the built-in camera to read a QR code and allow you to either go to the website or view the stored information.
Apple iPhone users can download NeoReader from the App Store at http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/neoreader/id284973754?mt=8.
For Android phones, QR codes can be accessed via Barcode Scanner at https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.zxing.client.android.
Windows Phone users can use the built-in Bing Visual Search by tapping the "Search" button or can download QR Code Reader to read the codes at http://www.windowsphone.com/en-US/apps/e21dee2d-9c1c-4f25-916f-c93d25da8768.