Barcode readers in mobile phones are becoming one of the most prevalent new applications embraced by consumers. An NPD Group report titled "Japan Consumer Wireless Study" found that that barcode readers had eclipsed location-based services and radio applications as the mobile features most commonly used by consumers in JapanJapanese consumers visit four retailers, on average, while researching a product, so Japan has become a leader in developing quick response (QR) code technology, something similar to bar codes.
In Japan, if you see an advertisement for a product in a magazine or on a subway wall, you look for the QR code and swipe it with your cell phone. Later, at your convenience, you may view the information that was embedded in the advertisement on your cell phone.
For awhile, retailers in the USA were talking about using the radio frequency identification device (RFID) to sense and serve ads to you based on what you purchased or what credit cards you carried. No one was happy with the thought of Wal-Mart scanning your wallet as you stepped in the door. On the other hand, QR code technology is non-invasive. You scan/request information that is served to you.
What do you think? Would you use the bar code to shop around and compare?