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History of the QR code

     Today, faced with the digitization of data, the QR code is an important tool for humanity. Thus the QR code is part of the daily life of men, which is why use it to go to the cinema, museum, restaurant, bar, for take the train or the plane…

What is QR code ?


The QR Code, which stands for “Quick Response Code”, had its appearance in 1994. Heir to the barcode and designed to be more efficient than one-dimensional (1D) barcodes, the QR code is two-dimensional (2D) and can be read in both directions (horizontally and vertically). This feature allows it to hold much more information than its predecessor, according to the Gizmodo site, since it can store up to 7,089 numeric characters and 4,296 alphanumeric characters. However, a typical barcode – which cannot be read only horizontally – stores only 10-13 characters.

So his Japanese designer Masahiro Hara, chief engineer at Denso-Wave, came up with this improved barcode to better track the journey of spare parts in Toyota factories. The QR is indeed able to store more information than a “classic” barcode.

He is also faster. Following this invention, the division in which he worked became a wholly owned subsidiary of the group, called Denso Wave, in which he now works as chief engineer. Hara says the company previously used barcodes to inventory parts, but that system wasn’t efficient enough. “There could be up to ten barcodes on a single box,” he recalls. “Employees were tired of having to scan the boxes multiple times, and that’s why we set out to design a code that could pass a large volume of information in a single scan. It was therefore to facilitate the inventory of car parts that the QR code was born. A QR code is characterized by its use of two-dimensional patterns of black squares and white dots. By using this type of pattern, it is possible to convey 200 times more information than in a simple barcode. If Hara is credited for the original idea, it is the development team at Denso who is responsible for designing the codes as they appear today. “Having an idea is one thing, says Hara, but you also need a system that can support its use. “As Denso lacked the resources to develop this technology on its own, the company then decided to file for a patent.


Nippon.  (2021, August 19)  La petite histoire méconnue du code QR, une invention japonaise Retrived from https://www.nippon.com/fr/japan-topics/fnn20191214001/

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