Thursday, October 26, 2006

Microsoft's Windows Live Barcode Disrupts PWC Space

Microsoft Live Barcode
This is probably one of the biggest, if not THE biggest, news stories for the physical world connection industry.

Companies in the physical world connection space should take this launch seriously.
Microsoft is saying, "we want to be the key player in the 2d code scanning space".

It is my opinion, that Google must introduce a 2d code scanning application and 2d creation application quickly to keep their lead.

2d codes will be more valuable than keywords in the physical world.

From MS Tech Today Windows Live Barcode launches

Windows Live Barcode is a set of services that transfer information between various media (PCs, billboards, magazines etc.) and handsets via Quick Response Code (QR Code), a two-dimensional barcode.

Install decoder software on handsets and capture QR Code via a built-in camera.

The QR Code is a two-dimensional barcode. It contains a considerably greater volume of information in both vertical and horizontal directions than typical barcode in one dimension

It provides a new method for people to exchange information and enjoy various online services on handsets. Windows Live Barcode aims to enhance handset utility and provide you with more convenience and flexibility.”

Find it time consuming to input long phrases on a handset's tiny keyboard? Want to make full use of your handset? Try Windows Live Barcode. Windows Live Barcode is a new way to avoid repetitive input, store more information, and enjoy better handset services within seconds

Take the tour

How are companies that are relying on 2d code scanning affected?

p.s. There's a special message in that 2d code I created for the people who should take Microsoft's announcement seriously.


Shawn McCollum said...

I didn't see where they had the application they used in the tour. What would be real nice if they included it as part of Windows Mobile 6 and also incleded it as a .net class.

Anonymous said...

Having just been to the Microsoft site to see what they have, this is nothing new. All they have is a QR code generator that can encode either text or business card details. Also in my testing it did not even work right.

They do not offer a decoding application for their phones to use it.

Unfortunately this does not speak to any commitment by Microsoft to this space or to QR. A decent programmer could knock this out in a couple of days.

QR is frankly ill suited to most mobile applications since it is really designed for industrial applications. Microsoft needs to look for much better technology to bring to their products.

charlie said...

i think what you see, scott, is the big picture. but, what we have is a jumbled mess of pieces, mostly disconnected.

me feel is that the whole mobile barcode thing needs a good end2end refurbishing. the company who makes that end2end easy, integarted, ubiquitous, relevant can really kick butt.

until then, we'll need fokls like you to keep the flame alive.

btw, i can think of one company that can handle large swaths of the value chain. heh.

also, coincidentally, i was having lunch with a friend and one thing we wanted to talk about was, you got it, barcodes.

keep banging the drum and someone will wake up and realize the pwc.

charlie said...

oh, and regarding your encoded message (i like that):

microsoft has taken a step, which is important. but they really haven't gone farther, which would be even more important.

for google to figure things out, they'd need you or some mobile savvy folks. they have mobile savvy folks, but, if based on conversations _i've_ had with mobile savvy folks everywhere, they are just brushing it off.

ah, the lack of imagination. pwc is there for the taking!

Scott Shaffer said...

Thanks Charlie,

It is my opinion that Microsoft just validated the market for 2d barcodes.

Nokia and Google see it and Mister Softee announces this today.

It is much easier to explain an emerging technology when the elephants start to dance.

How much longer before physical world hyperlinks have more "value" than keywords?

GPS coordinates become the "keywords" for mobile.

A mobile users action and location say much more than they could ever type into a seach window

This is an exciting time.

Shinsyotta said...

I'm having problems reading the bar code using the Kaywa Reader. This has worked for me so far.
While I'm on the subject, I have been having lots of trouble getting Connexto and Semacode to work on my phone at all. I actually bought a V3x just to run this software and I'm having a terrible time getting anything like this to work.

Any tips?

Scott Shaffer said...

The above link should be Google and Nokia see it

Roger said...

I also think this is a very good sign that QR Codes will stay with us for some time. It is absolutely critical for all of us, that we quickly can decide on one universal standard. Only then will we get a (mass) market as in Japan.

The code is a bit too small to be read with most current european phones. There is the possibility that you try to make it bigger (double it's size to keep the same ratio is probably best).


Anonymous said...

You can already read these QR Codes with most Western phones, because there are a couple of free apps out both for S60 and Java. Go look at:

Anonymous said...

If you have a symbian phone check this QRcode reader. It performs better than dedicated scanners:
Microsoft is making a wave with a technology that has been common place in Japan for couple of years. There is an open sourse J2ME reader available too.

Shinsyotta said...

Roger, thanks for tip. I'm sorry I took so long to respond.

Actually, I've been using Connexto on my V3x and I've tried using all kinds of different sizes, distances and so on. It seems that you have to get the code in just the right place to read it. I still am not good at finding that place. verall, I think that if it's so difficult to use, it won't take off. I'm sure these readers will improve with time, but right now (at least speaking of my experiences with the Connexto reader) they are too spotty.