ARCHIVES: This is legacy content from before Industry Dive acquired Mobile Marketer in early 2017. Some information, such as publication dates, may not have migrated over. Check out the new Mobile Marketer site for the latest mobile marketing news.

Scanbuy makes bar code SDK available to developers

Scanbuy is streamlining mobile bar code integration for marketers and developers with the release of its new software development kit.

The SDK lets developers integrate a generic version of Scanbuy?s ScanLife bar code reader into their applications. The ScanLife application comes pre-installed on a variety of handsets and is able to scan several types of 1D and 2D bar codes.

?This tool allows any third-party developer to bring mobile bar code scanning to more users in a really simple and integrated way,? said Jonathan Bulkeley, CEO of Scanbuy, New York. ?The number of people using ScanLife and scanning codes has grown three times [in size] so far this year, and we see no slowdown.

?Clearly consumers like this tool, and developers should have open access to it,? he said.

Scanbuy is the creator of ScanLife, a bar code scanner application compatible with several commonly used 1D and 2D bar codes, including QR, Datamatrix, EZcode, UPC, EAN and ISBN. After scanning the bar codes, ScanLife connects consumers to mobile content such as videos, product details and contact information.

The company claims that ScanLife comes installed and preloaded on more than 25 million handheld devices.

Simplifying mobile bar codes
Marketers have increasingly been integrating bar codes into their mobile campaigns, to a variety of different ends.

Some mobile bar code services do not require special software to read and scan the codes, including Jagtag, which uses MMS technology to scan 2D bar codes and send content to consumers.

However, many bar code initiatives do require handhelds to have software that can read the bar codes, and the lack of an industry standard has caused market fragmentation.

Scanbuy looks to solve this problem by developing a more universal bar code platform.

By releasing the ScanLife SDK, Scanbuy now lets publishers integrate a generic version of the bar code reader into any third-party application.

?Scanbuy has been working with publishers, marketers and carriers for the past two years to create an ecosystem that will reach the most amount of people possible,? Mr. Bulkeley said. ?Our platform can create any standard 2D code format, and our app is being preloaded on new phones.

?This tool brings bar code scanning to more people in more ways than ever before, and we believe that innovation is critical to continued growth,? he said.

A number of carriers have already signed up to integrate the ScanLife application into their mobile repertoires.

?Right now Sprint is preloading ScanLife on all new phones in the U.S.,? Mr. Bulkeley said. ?As an example, the new BlackBerry 9650 which was launched three weeks ago comes with the app.

?Verizon has been promoting it heavily as part of the new ?Droid Does? campaign,? he said. ?Overseas, the app is being preloaded by Telefonica, Orange, America Movil, Samsung and LG.?

Scanbuy decided to release the SDK after hearing considerable feedback from clients who wanted to integrate the technology.

?We have received a wide variety of requests for this over the past couple months,? Mr. Bulkeley said. ?Mobile bar codes are rapidly growing in popularity for marketers and publishers.

?At the same time, many of these same brands are developing apps,? he said. ?This SDK brings the two together in a tool that is very easy to deploy.?

A number of major brands have turned to Scanbuy to power mobile bar code initiatives in recent months, including Verizon Wireless (see story) and Heineken (see story).

?Brands are investing a majority of the marketing budgets in traditional media ? print, point-of-sale and direct mail,? Mr. Bulkeley said. ?This technology makes all of that immediately interactive and trackable.

?Virtually any experience can be launched from a code, and we are seeing hundreds of thousands of people engage, which is very exciting,? he said.