QR Code Update

 In Barcode Quality Training

I love QR Code—probably not for the same reason you do. It is a blank canvas for incredibly creative, incredibly terrible barcodes. In the barcode testing business, that translates into fun. Here is a small sampling of hundreds of breathtakingly bad QR Codes we have found in the past few months, with some help from our friends. A fun walk through the amazing smorgasbord of bad marketing decisions, bad design, and bad execution. Maybe not so fun for those who really want to use QR Code for marketing. For the former, enjoy! For the latter, learn.

unsquareAren’t these things supposed to be square?

Verification report: ISO FAIL due to Axial Nonuniformity. The symbol is distorted in either the X axis or the Y axis.


hex-qrAren’t these things supposed to be square?

Verification report: ISO FAIL: Fixed Pattern Damage (quiet zones infringed with all those extra perimeter pixels that make it so…interesting, and unreadable.




Color makes such an important design statement. Why doesn’t this thing scan?

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE. The symbol is printed in two different colors. There should be only two–the barcode and its background.





A little light screen in the background, no problem, right?

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE (both symbols). There must be at least a minimal amount of reflective difference between the barcode and its background.


tech-innovationThis company’s motto is “Where Technology Meets Innovation” but when the QR Code technology meets the logo innovation….it doesn’t work.

Verification report: ISO FAIL: 0% Unused Error Correction caused by logo, ISO D Modulation and ISO F Reflectance Margin


unsquare-2These are supposed to be square, right?

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE. Another case of nonuniformity of the X and Y axis.


misregistered-printWe printed it twice–no extra charge.

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE



lost-qrYou want me to scan your QR Code to find out more about….where is it?.

Verification report: ISO FAIL: Modulation,Reflectance Margin and Fixed Pattern Damage. X dimension is 8.6mil

Comment: The QR Code is .25″ x .25″ in a half-page ad–nearly invisible. It is hidden in the lower right hand corner.







Let’s put our logo in the QR Code–it makes it look so much better!

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE. Symbol too damaged by logo.




For location nearest you, scan our QR Code! Or just check the phone book since the QR Code doesn’t scan. Or go elsewhere…

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE


See the great features of Ocean City’s finest hotel…or go to a competitor whose QR Code really works.

Verification report: ISO FAIL: Unused Error Correction  13% due to damage from logo, Reflectance Margin and  Fixed Pattern Damage (quiet zone infringement)



philly-adbuilder-1And finally, our favorite, both from the classified ads in the Philadelphia Inquirer, from our growing “Aren’t these supposed to be square?” files.

Verification report: ISO FAIL: NO DECODE due to Axial Nonuniformity (we just guessed about that).







About the Featured Image…it does decode (URL http://azon.biz/1TN)…but earns an ISO FAIL for just about everything: Unused Error Correction 18%, Symbol Contrast 31%, Modulation, Reflectance Margin and Fixed Pattern Damagecharlotte

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