Un QR code sur smartphone

What is that ? What is it for and how do I use it?


The digital explosion has opened the way to a lot of possibilities in this area. New, increasingly innovative inventions are born every day. This is the case of QR code which seduced the world with its simplicity and practicality. One person Find out here what a QR Code is, its uses (in particular related to Health Passes and covide-19) and advantages, how to scan a QR code but also how to generate a QR Code.

What is a QR code?

QR code: definition, uses and advantages

Even if the term QR code sounds familiar to you because it is widely used (especially with covid-19), it is more than likely that you do not know the full definition. A QR code is the abbreviation in English of Quick Response code that we can translate by quick response code in French. This definition reflects how quickly it sends information once when used.

The code QR is more than just a password. It allows information to be stored and sent to anyone who can decrypt it. Don’t worry! To succeed, just use your smartphone to scan the QR code. The system reads it and sends you the information it contains in a fraction of a second. This provides the Quick Response code an infinity of possible uses.

The most common use case of a QR Code, however, remains the reference to a website, a very specific document. It can also be used as a more complex substitute for barcodes to obtain product information, to log in directly without having to enter a password (as in the case of WhatsApp Web), to log in to a WiFi network or even share screenshots for the Nintendo Switch game console.

In short, the possibilities of using QR codes are vast because they have the advantage of being more complex than a simple password. It can therefore store a larger amount of information. Indeed, a classic barcode contains 10 to 13 characters. The Quick Response code can be up to 7089 numeric characters and 4296 alphanumeric characters. It is therefore perfect for transmitting important information without having adequate space for this purpose.

QR Code, Health Pass and the Covid-19 health crisis

With the health crisis linked to the covid-19 pandemic, the QR code has been used a lot in the restaurant industry. It allowed to limit the spread of covid-19.

For example, many restaurants use it to replace the usual paper or laminated menus. The waiter or restaurant owner puts down a sign displaying a code QR. Once scanned, it returns directly to a digital menu of the restaurant. All customers can thus make their choice without touching a card.

Health pass and QR Code

The QR code is also a great help for the use of the application TousAntiCovid and for the establishment of health passport (or Health pass). The application alerts you in the event of contact with a person who has tested positive for the virus. In order to have access to information, just scan a QR code through the app. This way you know if you have been within two meters of a carrier of the coronavirus. L’application TousAntiCovid also allows you to provide a vaccination certificate that can be downloaded or printed to prove that you have been vaccinated against covid-19. Note that the vaccination certificate, certified by the administration, can also be downloaded from the Health Insurance website via the website https://attestation-vaccin.ameli.fr/

QR codes are therefore used as a device for tracing contact cases. The Health Pass (in paper or digital form) will be required in certain places, in particular all those bringing together more than 1000 people such as stadiums, exhibitions and fairs, concert halls and theaters, festivals but also to travel abroad , especially in Europe. The QR code is then used at the entrance of the place requiring it: the holder must scan his QR code in order to allow better traceability in the event of contamination but also to better regulate the flows in these places.

TousAntiCovid Signal : report your visit to a restaurant using a QR Code

Even if the Health Pass is not compulsory in restaurants, there is still an obligation to report your presence in a closed room establishment either by leaving your contact details on a paper reminder book or via TousAntiCovid Signal.

The principle of TousAntiCovid Signal is simple: from June 9, 2021, restaurants, drinking establishments and sports halls (closed places where the use of masks is not possible) must generate a QR Code (via the government site https://qrcode.tousanticovid.gouv.fr/) then put it at the entrance of their establishment. This QR Code will be scanned by visitors and the application will then register your presence for 2 hours (12 hours for employees). This should allow notify and alert all users who have been in contact as part of the establishment.

How to scan a QR code on an Android or iOS device (iPhone, iPad)?

Scan a QR Code with your smartphone
The smartphone can scan the QR Code and redirect you to a web page for example

If you are wondering how you can scan a “Quick Response” code, know that this operation is very simple. You just have to use your smartphone’s camera. However, depending on its model, some special steps must be taken to read the code QR.

For an Android: download a QR code reader application

If your device is running on a system Android, you may need download a special QR code reader app available on Google Play. This will serve as QR code reader. It can be “QR code reader “Or”Barcode and QR scanner “. Note that these free applications for Android most often include advertisements.

It is also possible that depending on your smartphone model, this option is already integrated. In this case, you don’t need an additional app. In addition, you can also use Google Lens from Google to read your QR code.

For an iOS device (iPhone or iPad): use the camera

In case you have an iPhone or iPad, know that it works on iOS and this functionality is automatically integrated. However, you must have version 11 of iOS to be able to use it. Otherwise, you will also need to download a QR code reader application from the Apple App Store.

For iPhones and iPads running iOS 11 or later, all you need to do is open your camera to crack the code.

Then make sure that it is clearly visible in the middle of the screen. It will be automatically read and you will be able to access all the information it contains.

How to generate a QR code?

It is important to mention that the Quick Response code is not only easy to use. It is also accessible to everyone because it is very easy to generate. No complex programming is required for you to have your own QR code. To do this, you just need to make use of a QR code generator. They are usually available online and allow you to design your custom code with just a few clicks.

Here we will take the example of the free QR code generator QRCode Monkeywhich is very easy to use, in French and does not require creating an account, unlike many QR code creation tools.

The free QRCode Monkey QR code generator

How to generate a high quality QR code with QRCode Monkey in a few clicks?

  1. Once on QRCode Monkey, you must enter the URL to which the visitor will be referred as to your website for example. All you need to do is enter its link in the “Your URL ”.
  2. Once this important step has been passed, you now have the possibility to take an interest in its personalization of your QR code by selecting the colors of your QR Code in the “Select colors“, By adding your logo via the field“ Add a logo image ”or the style of the QR code via“Customize the style”Which allows to choose the shape of the body, the shape of the outline of the markers or the shape in the center of the markers.
  3. As soon as all the information is integrated, all you have to do is press the ” Create my code “. Your QR code is ready to be shared as much as you want. You can generate your QR code in png, svg, pdf or eps formats.

I cannot read a QR code. What should I do ?

It is not excluded that you will be faced with some QR code reading problems. In this case, check some key parameters. The first is brightness. Your smartphone may not be able to distinguish all parts of the code due to low light. So move to a brighter place or use a light source to illuminate the code.

You should also be careful not to tilt your smartphone during the operation. He must be right in front of the code at all costs. Also remember to place it on a stable surface to prevent it from moving and leaving the field. For the code to be easy to read, it must be stationary in front of your screen for a few seconds.

While this can be a reflex, you should also avoid getting too close to the code. It must be fully visible to be decrypted. This may not be the case if you are too close to it. Do not forget either that by getting closer, you risk creating gray areas on the QR code, which slows down its reading.

By following all these little rules, you are sure to decrypt all the QR codes you will need.

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