Scanning Basics: From Laser to Imager
Whether you’re aware of it or not, barcodes are one of the most influential technologies of the 20th century. The simple black and white bars you find on every product have helped usher in a level of efficiency that has allowed for large scale tracking around the globe. Many businesses would not be possible to run without the humble barcode. Keeping track of anything accurately is almost unimaginable without barcodes.
Historically, laser-based scanners were used to read barcodes. These laser scanners are still found in many applications today. While there have been advances in the speed and accuracy of laser scanners, the technology is still essentially the same it was when it was first developed in the ‘70s.
Today however, there are two technologies used in readers for barcode scanning: lasers and imagers. Imagers offer several improvements over the traditional laser while also providing important new capabilities, such as being able to read 2D barcodes. Imagers may have been used only in special cases in the past, but today, the advantages they provide over lasers can help improve almost any scanning application.
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Barcode inventory management software is used to supervise the supply, storage and accessibility of items in order to ensure an adequate supply without excessive oversupply through the use of barcode automatic identification and data capture (AIDC) technology.
Inventory systems consist of the following core components:
- Inventory Software – Software is the backbone of any system and will determine what features and options are available. When choosing inventory software you want to consider reporting detail and whether or not the software supports batch or real-time updates, as well as whether it needs to be integrated with an ERP system. Lastly, you want to determine whether a premise or cloud-based software is more ideal for your business.
- Mobile Computer – Inventory goods are located in different “bins” throughout a business. A mobile device allows you to have all the information you need to make decisions on when, where and how much to re-order.
- Barcode Printer – Inventory come in all shapes, sizes and quantities. Barcode printers are designed to print labels to meet every business size and print volume.
- Consumables – All inventory goods need a unique identifier on them to be properly tracked. Barcodes are the easiest and most cost effective option, while being capable of meeting environmental and regulatory requirements.
When evaluating barcode inventory management software, it is best to consider a cloud-based inventory management solution. Some of the benefits of cloud-based software include reduced capital expenditures, painless and cost-free software updates, lowered IT costs (i.e. no need to house multiple servers) and improved accessibility to the data through the Internet.
If you’re looking for a cloud-based barcode inventory management software that can fulfill all of your inventory requirements, look no further than BarcodesInc’s topShelf. TopShelf is an inventory, warehouse management, route accounting, asset tracking and online ordering application that caters to small up to enterprise-sized businesses. Our barcode inventory management software has the ability to integrate with ERP systems (SAP, Oracle, etc.), Accounting systems (Sage, Quickbooks, etc.), CRM systems (Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, etc.) and eCommerce Systems (Channel Advisor, Shopify, Amazon).
To request a demo of topShelf or request more information on our barcode inventory management software, contact us at BarcodesInc.
Datalogic has announce that the highly successful Skorpio X3 mobile computer product line has been further enhanced with improved 2D performance and a new keypad option.
Regarding the improved performance of the 2D feature, both depth-of-field and decoding speed have been significantly improved in order to provide the best state-of-the-art solution.
Datalogic is pleased to expand the number of available standard 2D configurations offering a wide variety of pistol grip models, now featuring an extended battery pack by default to support scan-intensive 2D applications.
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After the initial announcement in January of this year, the Honewyell Captuvo SL62 is currently available for purchase and delivery.
The Captuvo SL62 enterprise sled encases the popular Apple iPad mini, transforming it into an enterprise-ready device for businesses that prefer the simplicity and familiarity of iOS, but need additional functionality built-in for instant access to inventory, scanning and secure payment processing. The Captuvo SL62 is fully compatible with all Apple iPad mini models.
The Captuvo SL62 is available in 3 core configurations:
For assistance choosing the right version for your business needs, contact us at BarcodesInc.
Socket Mobile announced its new model 8Qi 2D Cordless Hand Scanner (CHS). The new 8Qi can scan both 1D “linear” barcodes and 2D QR codes making the 8Qi an ideal choice in Mobile Point of Sale (mPOS) applications where 1D UPC barcodes, 2D bobile coupons or loyalty cards need to be scanned.
Approximately the same size as a credit card measuring less than ½ inch (1.27cm) thick and weighing less than two ounces, the CHS 8Qi is the smallest and lightest 2D barcode scanner available in the market today. It can be attached to most smartphones including the Apple iPhone®, iPod touch® and Samsung® S4 devices in a “sled type” configuration solution. The 8Qi slips neatly into your pocket and fits comfortably in the palm of your hand when attached to a smartphone. You can add a lanyard or belt clip for a wearable solution making the 8Qi accessible at any time.
The CHS 8Qi (White- Part# CX3344-1578) (Black- Part# CX3343-1577) is the second model in the progression of the CHS Series 8 cordless barcode scanners which are attachable to most smartphones enabling one-handed professional barcode scanning. The 8Qi is also suited for Mobile Ticketing and high-end retail environments where 2D barcodes are gaining popularity for security and data capacity. The 8Qi will be available at the end of Q3, 2014.
Full Socket CHS 8Qi specifications (PDF)
Ever worked as a check-out clerk in a grocery store?
Disney’s Checkout Challenge for Windows mobile devices captures the experience in a very convincing way. In this fast paced game you collect groceries and scan them in as quickly and accurately as possible for the highest score. Start training to improve your barcode scanning skills to become Checkout Chairman!
The app is currently available through the Windows Phone Store.
Xplore has announced the release of the Bobcat—a fully-rugged Windows tablet boasting the most comprehensive standardized interfaces available, an extensive array of options through its proprietary Xpansion Port and a sleek lightweight design. The Bobcat operates Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 Pro operating systems and continues to build upon Xplore’s reputation for fully-rugged durability with a MIL-STD 810G certification and IP65 rating. The Windows tablet is an ideal choice for a variety of industries including manufacturing, warehousing and distribution, and utilities.
The Bobcat offers a robust suite of standard inputs and outputs that make the transition across different business applications as frictionless as possible. The tablet comes standard with two full-sized USB 3.0s, Micro SDXC, Micro SIM, Micro HDMI-Out, RJ-45 Ethernet, GPS engine and a true serial port connection. The Bobcat is the only fully-rugged tablet on the market to offer GPS, RJ-45 Ethernet and a true serial port connection in one device. With this comprehensive selection of ports, businesses are not forced to making compromises on port selections upon purchase.
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Aldelo Touch, a full-featured POS solution designed for Apple’s iPad and iPad Mini has been updated with support for Star Micronics SM-S220i Bluetooth mobile printer, SM-T300i Bluetooth mobile printer, TSP143LAN Ethernet desktop printer and DK-AirCash peripheral for secure wireless cash drawer control.
Aldelo provides the next generation in restaurant point of sale technology designed exclusively for mobility, flexibility and simplicity. Incorporating the latest technologies with user-friendly interface designs, unbelievable flexibility and accessible cloud office, Aldelo Touch provides full restaurant capabilities without compromise.
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Socket has announced a hands‐free barcode scanning solution for processing mobile coupons. The Socket Mobile QX Stand will enable customers to securely scan electronic coupons by passing them under a Socket Mobile barcode scanner in auto detection mode without relinquishing control of their electronic devices.
Socket Mobile maintains a leadership position in the Cordless Hand Scanning market by listening to our customer’s needs. Driven by the significant increase in the number of mobile coupon users, our mPOS (mobile point of sale) customers requested a hands‐free scanning mode for an otherwise mobile requirement.
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Datalogic brings a new and innovative scanner to take a step in improving sanitation hospital wide. With their new Gryphon GD4400-HC and GM4400-HC anti-microbial barcode scanners, the spread of disease, like the devastating MRSA, which claimed 5,500 lives, becomes more preventable.
The Gryphon GD4400-HC 2D and the Gryphon GM4400-HC 2D readers can scan nearly all 1D and 2D barcodes and can even read barcodes off of troublesome LCD monitors, smartphones, and other mobile devices. In addition, they have improved motion tolerance from their previous models, which increases accuracy and gives them the ability to capture images like signatures, IDs, or prescriptions. Both Gryphon readers got rid of the “flicker effect” known to be found in many competing scanners, which encourages all-day usage. The scanners also include a visible 4-Dot aimer feature which clearly indicates the reading area.
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