There’s always things going on at QRStuff.com and here’s some of the enhancements and features that we’ve added in the past few months, and a few things that we rolled out during 2014 but we may have forgotten to tell you about (sorry, our bad).
We’ve been doing QR codes globally since 2008 (we had our 7th birthday in January!), and as 2015 rolls on we’ll be releasing more new features, refreshing some of the older stuff, and just generally making sure that QRStuff.com continues be one of the world’s most popular (and longest-running) QR code creation websites.
Using our Bitcoin QR code data type you can now create a QR code to pass your Bitcoin address to another user or, if you specify an amount, to request the payment of a particualr amount into your Bitcoin wallet.
Just enter your Bitcoin address, and optionally the amount, label (usually name of receiver) and message (usually transaction description), click on “Download QR Code” and you’re good to go.
For stability and cross-platform compatibility across all major wallets, particularly in the mobile space, we’ve chosen to use the bitcoin: custom URI scheme (BIP-0021) for encoding, rather than raw URL’s.
DXF File Output – Paid Feature
A common request from users was to have a file format more suitable for use with 2D and 3D CAD work in cases where a QR code needed to be added to a plan, a schematic or a design file as an embedded link to an external data source or reference document. DXF (Drawing Exchange Format) is an ASCII CAD data file format that allows data interoperability between CAD programs and essentially turns the QR code into a discrete native CAD drawing object, so it made obvious sense to go with that one.
A standard part of the paid subscriber feature set is the ability to create QR code images in high resolution raster formats (PNG, JPG, TIF up to 600dpi) or vector formats (EPS, SVG, PDF), and adding DXF files to the list makes an already comprehensive range of output file types options just that much better.
Google Campaign Management – Paid Feature
Another addition to the paid subscriber feature set is the ability to integrate Google Campaign Management parameters directly into the QR code at the time of its creation. When you are logged into your subscriber account an additional input panel appears immediately below the data entry area where you can enter the standard source, medium and content parameters.
In addition to being able to add Google Campaign Management parameters to a QR code when its first created, for dynamic QR codes the parameters can be updated, or removed completely, through the subscriber account dashboard. They can even be added “after the fact” to an existing QR code that didn’t have them applied initially, and this includes dynamic QR codes created before the release of this feature. Static QR codes can only have Google Campaign Management parameters added at the time of their creation.
More information about using Google Campaign Management with QR codes can be found in our previous blog post Using Google Analytics With QR Codes.
More Dynamic Data Types
In the past our Email Message, Email Address and Phone Number QR code data types were only offered as static QR codes due to a few technical challenges at the phone end of things that we hadn’t really found answers to. As a result they were un-editable and didn’t have analytics reporting. Thanks to some recent advances in the way Android and iOS devices do things, those technical issues have resolved themselves to the point where can now confidently offer these data types with a dynamic creation option.
Short Version – If you’re a paid subscriber you can now edit and track dynamic Email Message, Email Address and Phone Number QR codes. Yay!
A new Instagram QR code data type for linking to an Instagram profile using the instagram:// custom URI so that the Instagram app can be used to open the profile if the app is installed on the phone scanning the QR code.
vCard Notes Field
After quite a few user requests we’ve now introduced a Notes field to the data elements that can be include in our “Contact Details” (vCard) data type. Not a biggie, but still worth mentioning anyway.
QR Code Pausing – Paid Feature
We’ve provided paid subscribers with several customisable access control options for dynamic QR codes for several years now, including password protection, however those options have only dealt with access management for “live” active QR codes.
Pausing is a different approach and involves essentially de-activating an existing QR code for a period of time.
The pausing options we’ve made available to subscribers are “Manual” (pause it until you manually un-pause it) or “Scheduled” (pause it from now until a pre-specified time and date), and both of these pause methods have the choice of two pause actions to be carried out while the QR code is paused – specify your own custom “Message” to be displayed on-screen when the QR code is scanned, or a “Redirection” URL to take users to an alternative/temporary URL of your choice while the QR code is paused.
Pausing is only available with dynamic QR codes.
iOS 7 vCard Import
With the release of iOS 7 Apple finally allowed for the direct import of a vCard VCF file from an external source (like a QR code or web page) into the Contacts on an iPhone. Prior to that the only way to get the data from the QR code into the Contacts was to email a vCard VCF file back to the phone that was being used to scan the QR code as an attachment, and then adding the contents of the attachment to the Contacts. Very messy but it was the way it had to be done on an iPhone.
This restriction was lifted in iOS 7 so that vCard data could now be imported directly from a QR code into the Contacts on an iPhone – which is, by the way, how Android devices have always done things.
Our Contact Details (vCard) dynamic QR codes now actively detect the iOS version of the iPhone scanning the QR code and if it’s iOS 7 or better the vCard data is automatically offered to the user for direct import into the Contacts on the phone. Scanning a vCard QR code and importing the contact details it contains is now a simple and seamless process for all devices, unless of course you’re one of those people still using iOS 5 or iOS 6 😉
Android Tablet Support For App Store Download QR Codes
With our App Store Download data type QR codes you enter the store page URL’s for your app in the various app stores and when the QR code is scanned it will determine the device being used and re-direct the user’s device to the app store page that relates to that device. Scan it with an iPhone – get redirected to the page on the iTunes app store for the iPhone version of the app. Scan it with an Android device – automatically get redirected to the page for the app on Google Play. Simple!
Since we introduced App Store Download QR codes in late 2011 it has become one of the most popular data types and we have continued to enhance its functionality ever since.
As new app-enabled devices have been brought to market we have expanded the number of app store page link choices for App Store Download QR codes, starting with allowing separate links for iPhone and iPad app versions in late 2012, and then separate links for Blackberry BB10 vs legacy apps in 2013.
In 2014 the segmentation of the Google Play store into separate store pages for phone and tablet apps made it obvious that we should also offer the same segmentation at our end, so we introduced separate links for app store pages for Android phone vs tablet apps when setting up an App Store Download QR code.
More information about this QR code data type can be found in our previous article QR Codes For App Store Downloads.