Replacing Dedicated Barcode Scanners – the Smartphone Advantage

When companies consider replacing dedicated barcode scanners with software-enabled smartphones, they often focus on basic performance metrics. Such as, can a smartphone paired with Scandit’s Barcode Scanner SDK scan at the same speed as a traditional dedicated scanner? Can it do so reliably and in varied conditions?

The answer to these questions is yes (here are the performance videos to prove it). But many other possibilities are available when a powerful smartphone is being used. A device with a camera, a large screen, an intuitive user interface (UI) and plenty of processing power opens numerous possibilities.

Consider a common barcode scanning challenge: the scanning of a shelf lined with products, each labeled with a barcode. Using a smartphone with Scandit’s Barcode Scanner SDK, a user can simultaneously capture all of the products on an entire shelf instantly, rather than scan each barcode individually. This saves crucial time and increases worker efficiency.

Multi-scan capability can also be applied to more complex challenges. In fulfillment/picking scenarios, an employee might be tasked with locating a specific item on a shelf lined with similar products. But how can they easily be directed to the correct product, perhaps in a specific size or color?

Scandit has solved this problem using multi-scan capability, shown in the video below. An employee uses an app on their smartphone to select a specific product in the correct color and size. Then they point the device’s camera at the shelf and scan over the shelf. Using an augmented reality (AR) layer in the UI and Scandit’s barcode tracking technology, the user can now see each item’s barcode highlighted in red (not a match) or with an image of the product superimposed over the package (indicating a match). The employee can thereby quickly find the desired product in seconds, rather than take time to look through rows of products.

These are just two examples of how smartphones introduce entirely new possibilities into existing enterprise processes and workflows, increasing efficiency and decreasing error rates. It is important to consider improvements beyond basic performance metrics when considering whether a software-enabled smartphone can replace dedicated scanning hardware in a given scenario.

Contact us today to learn more about how Scandit’s technology can help you leapfrog legacy barcode scanning solutions.

This post was developed in conjunction with Daniel Thalhammer, Scandit’s former Director of Partnerships, Scandit.