Barcode scanners are devices that are used to identify items using an 11-12 digit code usually represented by bars spaced with differing widths and thickness. The scanned images from the scanners are analyzed and information about the specific products is retrieved from the item databases. These scanners have become way too common in the modern world. It is almost obvious that we have all interacted with barcode scanners before. Think about the last time you checked in a supermarket. Do you recall the cashier swiping your shopping over some piece of “beeping” gadget that kept shooting some red light over your shopping while recording the price? That’s what I am talking about.
The answer to that is obvious: barcode scanners speed up the speed of processing voluminous data entry items (usually when selling or updating inventory) in large organizations.
The real problem however, is when one has to choose a barcode scanner for his/her project. Here is where we often get a nightmare… You see, the market always blasts you with thousands of barcode reader options to choose from. Some options are awesome in looks but poor in performance, some are poor in looks but are great performers, some have both (great design and capabilities) but are way too expensive, and many more options one might want to consider. So, what are the key considerations when one wants to purchase a new barcode reader? Let’s take a look…
Addressing the issue of software capabilities of barcode scanners is quite a huge topic of its own. However, I will try to showcase the available options we got in a nutshell. The top 3 commonest barcode scanner classification can be divided into 3 classes. These are:
Here we again get three major types of barcode scanner classifications that differ in their way of reading barcodes.
In this category, we will consider the method of data transmission between the barcode scanners and the processing device or computer. There are obviously two types of connections: wired/bounded and wireless/unbounded types of connections.
Now, we all love it when it is wireless; that’s why the words Bluetooth and Wi-Fi have become the biggest selling keyword in today’s technology. Nobody loved the having to deal with cables over and over again when handling electronics like the scanners. However, though they all work very much the same, it is important to note that wireless barcode scanners always come with a bigger price tag when compared to the wired scanners. Besides that, there is no significant difference in performance.
As had been outlined from the introduction, barcodes have got quite a vast field of applications. This implies that the use of barcode scanners too is equally huge and in some cases the issues to do with portability play such a great role. Among the most popular types barcode scanners in the market today are these four:
These types of scanners operate by being held on the palm when in use. They are very portable. Handheld scanners are good in registering new products into the store but they are not very good when used in POS terminals due to a high and regular entry or records.
These types of scanners are somehow similar to handheld scanners in that both are highly portable. Presentation barcode scanners however are designed to be stationed on raised positions next to the POS. As their name suggests, they require you to “present” barcodes close to them and they will analyze them. Unlike the handheld scanners, presentation scanners have a wider field of coverage when compared to the handheld scanners.
Mounted scanners are the most used types of barcode scanners in POS terminals. It is almost certain that you have interacted with mounted scanners either in the supermarket or by the grocery. They are often mounted on the counter and have a small heading with a mounted scanner and can be rotated easily to capture barcodes. They are more accurate and have a wider field of coverage than the two types of scanners discussed above.
They are the most recent trend of barcode scanners in the market. These types of scanners are enabled with features of capturing, processing and either storing or transmitting information acquired from the barcodes. Most of these devices use wireless transmission. The best example of mobile devices for barcode scanning is the Mobile Computer H6 2D barcode scanner.
Besides the many questions that may bother you, it will be important to answer the following questions correctly:
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