Different Types of Barcode Scanners,handheld,bluetooth barcode scanner

Barcodes are so very versatile. The types of barcode scanners available today are also increasingly versatile in what they can do. They are easier to use now than before and there’s now no need for loads of cables and decoder boxes. It’s a simple case of plugging the scanner into PC with the cable and it is pretty much ready to go. However, whilst the process is definitely easier, sometimes it is tricky for a business to decide which one to use. There are so many options out there now!  We’re going to explore some different types of barcode scanner and how different industries use them today.

Far from slowing down since they were first introduced decades ago, the use of barcode scanners continues to grow. Of course, this growth is more often obvious in the stores of our towns and cities, but barcode scanners appear in other places too. They are in warehouses to keep track of inventory and by people in their homes to scan to find out details on the product itself, particularly for those of us keeping track of our calories and foods consumed.

Types Of Barcode Scanners

How do Companies Decide on What Type of Barcode Scanner to Use?

Firstly, the company needs to identify its needs. Where will they use the scanner? Is the environment rugged? What types of barcodes? Is it for fast speeds or slower speeds?  Does it need to stay fixed in place? What about whether or not it is a USB bar code scanner? If a business can answer these questions, then it is well on the way to deciding what sort of barcode scanner it needs.

The Industrial Fixed Barcode Scanner

An industrial fixed barcode scanner is ideal for use in high volume and high-speed scanning environments such as in supermarkets or other general purpose stores and even more rugged environments. Kiosks, boarding pass scanners at airports, and DPM (direct part marking) tend to use industrial fixed barcode scanners. There are even different types of fixed barcode scanners available too, depending on the intended volume. Many companies recommend Datalogic and Microscan brands for rapid scanning, with Code and Motorola brands recommended for reduced volume scanning.

Usb Bar Code Scanner

Presentation Barcode Scanners

This design of scanner sits on a countertop and are for hands-free barcode scanning. There’s also a wide field for the scanner so it doesn’t need to hit the barcode in a small window space. These ones are often in self-scan checkouts in stores as they are so easy to use.

Handheld Products Barcode Scanner

This form of barcode scanner is very popular in many businesses. They are really easy to use and have a trigger to scan the barcode. Many models of these also have hands-free operation too if you get the stand to go with it. Most hand held products barcode scanners can come in corded or uncorded versions, depending on the flexibility needed for the business.

Connectivity

How you barcode scanner connects to the computer is of vital importance. We’ve already mentioned cordless and corded varieties of handheld scanners but there are other options to consider too.

All scanners need to connect to a computer to transmit the information from the barcode into the software. In the past, all hand held barcode scanners had cords and this is often still the case. Most retail stores that use them use a USB bar code scanner, where the wire on the end of the scanner connects to the computer via USB connection. They’re very easy to set up as a result and are a cheaper option.

However, cordless varieties are now becoming more commonplace thanks to their ever-reducing cost. They work in the same way as their corded counterparts except that they work via a cordless connection. Many stores and businesses use Wi-Fi or Bluetooth barcode readers on the checkouts.

The computer itself does not need to have Wi-Fi or Bluetooth compatibility (although the vast majority do). The Bluetooth barcode readers come with a stand and the stand is plugged in directly to the computer in the same way as a USB bar code scanner would be. The scanner does need to be paired to the base but then you are all set to go. Bluetooth barcode readers usually have a range of about 33ft but there are some that can extend further. Some varieties can even pair with any device; it does not have to be a computer but can be a tablet, laptop or even smartphone. Therefore, a hand held products barcode scanner gives people the freedom and mobility in their use.

Ruggedness

This is something that we have already mentioned. This is something that all business owners using barcode scanners need to consider. With a handheld products barcode scanner, a more rugged scanner will save money in the future in environments when it is more likely to be dropped, for example. However, the majority of scanners are robust enough that they can be used daily and if accidentally dropped they should be ok. Scanners that are ruggedized usually have bright red or yellow casing and tend to be more expensive. But, if you think people are likely to drop your scanners then this extra cost is worth it to reduce the need to replace the scanner when it breaks.

Finding the Right Types of Barcode Scanner

As always, finding the right barcode scanner for a business’s needs might be tricky. But, the business needs to consider more than anything are those initial questions: what is its use and frequency of use? How rugged does it need to be? How will it connect to the computer? With answers to all these questions, a business can identify the type of barcode scanner that suits their needs and search accordingly for one that meets their requirements.

Things are continually changing in the barcode scanning world and so there are also to be some newer changes to come in the industry, with newer and improved types of barcode scanners appearing all the time. I guess we will just have to watch this space to see where the technology takes us!

Scroll to Top