Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Price Compare Using Mobile Phone

Price comparison with mobile using barcode and camera phone.

Sometimes I wonder if people can't think of other applications for connecting a barcode besides price comparison.

From Chicago Sun Times Price checks at your fingertips

The author tested scanZoom's product and had some interesting comments.

ScanBuy, a New York software developer, has developed scanZOOM, a program that can be downloaded onto some cell phones to work with built-in cameras to scan the bar codes of products and get price information

Go to to see if your phone can handle the software. If it will work, you download the software via SMS, short messaging service. Free add-on lenses are available to improve the resolution and magnification if your phone needs it.

I was able to look at books, DVDs and CDs. I knew in general that I could get those sorts of items on the cheap as "used" items at Amazon. I didn't need ScanBuy for that.

Next, I tried a real-world experiment at some clothing stores. A couple of years ago, I nearly was booted out of a store while trying out a digital camera, as I waited for my wife to try on clothes. I wondered how scanning would go. It proved no problem. No clerks asked me what I was doing as I scanned bar codes on pants and shirts.

I could tell the bar codes were being successfully read, but unfortunately, it didn't get any pricing information.

There are two things that could be going on. Either the barcodes aren't "turned on" (linked to a website), or Scanbuy's service isn't able to read them.

ScanBuy is in discussions with cell-phone manufacturers and mobile-phone companies to provide scanning software as a standard feature on phones. Scanning might become a for-pay service.

I don't see the demand for a for-pay service when I can type in the numbers with Froogle.

Would you pay for a price comparison service?

Would you pay to scan any barcode and see what information/website you would get?

What service or application would you pay for that involved scanning a barcode?

1 comment:

Price Comparison said...

Comparing prices online is now easy. On my part, I have been using RoboShopper to search a product and get a list of websites at once so that I can compare the prices right away.