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Cell Phones and 2D Barcodes are Changing Retail POS

Soon, it will be common place for shoppers to use their cell phones to redeem coupons and even pay for purchases. JCPenny has partnered with Cellfire to offer coupons on your cell phone. Instead of digging through your wallet or purse looking for a printed coupon, you simply show the mobile coupon on your phone’s LCD screen to the cashier, who scans the 2D barcode for the discount. So far, this is only available in the Houston area stores, which are the only JCPenny stores with 2D barcode readers.

Customers can use the Starbucks Mobile Card App on their iPhones to pay for their coffee. The app creates a QR code on the LCD screen which is then scanned by the barista in order to pay. The app also allows customers to keep track of gift card balances and add more money onto the card straight from their iPhone. Starbucks is offering a $5 credit to anyone who adds $25 or more to a gift card using their phone, as an incentive to use the app. However, the ability to pay with your phone is limited to Starbucks locations that have a 2D barcode scanner. The other locations will have to upgrade their traditional linear barcode scanner, which can’t read the QR code.

For any retail operation looking to replace old barcode scanners or just starting to get into barcoding, you might want to seriously consider 2D barcode scanners. They cost a bit more, but you’ll be future-proofing your point-of-sale stations, offering the most convenience for your customers, and ensuring that you stay on the front of the tide of technology, not left in its wake.

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