Smartphone Penetration Means More QR Codes!

By | February 4, 2014

Sick of hearing about QR Codes yet? Sorry, but it’s not going to slow down anytime soon. New comScore data shows that smartphone penetration has reached what it calls “a significant majority,” with 156 million people in the U.S. now owning a smartphone. This is nearly two-thirds (65%) of the mobile market.

While people don’t scan QR Codes just because they own smartphones, this does increase the base for adoption. Plus, smartphone owners are using their phones for an increasingly sophisticated array of services. They — we — like to scan things. (Well, we do, don’t we?)

According to the Parks Associates study “Transforming Commerce: Mobile Wallets and LBS,” for example, 20% of all smartphone owners have used at least one mobile location service or mobile wallet in 2013. This is forecast to increase to about 113 million, or 43% of all smartphone owners within three years.

Furthermore, the study found that almost half of all holiday consumer electronics shoppers in 2013 expected to use their smartphones while shopping. More than one-third (35%) of these planned to use their smartphones to look up product information. This is one of the key uses for QR Codes, especially on packaging.

This doesn’t automatically translate into QR Code use, but it certainly speaks to trending mobile phone behavior that supports QR Code use.

I’m curious, has anyone reading this not scanned a QR Code in the past month?

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2 thoughts on “Smartphone Penetration Means More QR Codes!

  1. Heidi Tolliver-Walker Post author

    Hi, Mark. Read your blog post. I’m not sure I get the point about the time to get out the phone, scan, wait for the browser to load, and all that. From start to finish, I can scan a QR Code and be taken to the site in less than about 10 seconds. About the same time it takes to take out my phone and make a phone call based on a phone number being provided in a print ad. It takes me longer to open Safari and type in a web address (even a relatively short and easy to type one) than it does to scan the code.

    As for lighting, sometimes that’s a problem. But then so is trying to call a phone number after hours. Every response mechanism has its limitations. I still cannot figure out why QR Codes seem to be held to a higher standard than other response mechanisms. BRCs have lots of limitations. They get ripped out and lost. People fill them out halfway and don’t bother to do the rest. If you don’t have them pre-metered, many never get mailed for lack of stamp. Yet no one suggests we stop using them because of these things. I don’t get it.

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