I’ve had a 2D barcode reader pre-installed on my unbranded Nokia phones for a while now, and it’s incredibly useful. There’s even a FireFox plugin that lets you highlight any text or link and instantly create a 2D barcode for it. This is great for downloading something with your phone without having to download it to your computer first.
I have a 2D barcode on the back of my business card, and there tons of various marketing campaigns (such as this one from Ralph Lauren) that uses them. As even further proof that these little codes are really handy, Sprint, the third largest carrier in the United States (and seemingly, the one who’s usually up for experimenting with new things) has created an application called ScanLife for its customers that works on over 30 of its currently-offered phones.
ScanLife is a free application and it uses your phone’s camera to scan 2D barcodes and then translate them into whatever information they contain. It’s really brilliant, and there are a handful of other java-based applications that you can use, as well. Basically, any phone on the market today with a camera and a web browser should be able to use these.
I’m glad to see 2D barcodes getting a bit more recognition, for sure.