Scanning QR Codes on Android (8 and above) and iOS (11 and above) does not require an additional app. All you have to do is point your native camera at the QR Code and click on the link that pops up.
With the recent outbreak of the novel Coronavirus, coming in contact with surfaces poses a great risk as the virus can spread through contaminated surfaces.
As a result, contactless solutions and consequently QR Code scanner apps have surfaced as the need of the hour with QR Codes being extensively used for contactless delivery, pick-up, and payments.
2021 is the year of QR Codes – they have been readily adopted by businesses and consumers alike. Consumers scan QR Codes to make payments, reveal product information, avail rewards or discounts, and share information.
With the iOS 13 upgrade, Apple has introduced improvements that boost QR scan performance. The app launch speed of the new iOS 13 is twice as fast. iOS devices including iPhones have become faster and more accurate with QR code scans.
The latest operating system lets users use the flashlight for scanning QR Codes in low lightings. However, iPhones running on versions lower than iOS 11 still need a QR Code scanner app.
Android users can scan QR Codes without an app if their smartphone’s operating system is Android 8/Oreo and above. The latest Android 10 enables users to share passwords securely through a QR Code. Smartphones using Android version 7 and below require an external mobile app.
iOS and Android smartphones (iOS 11 and above, and Android 8 and above) have in-built QR Code scanners in their native camera app feature that makes it the easiest way to scan a QR Code without downloading a third-party app. The camera feature is so advanced that a QR Code can be scanned even under pretty harsh conditions.
To scan a QR Code, simply open your camera, point it to the QR Code, and open the notification banner that appears to open its contents.
Best QR Code scanner apps for Android and iOS in 2021
Scanning a QR Code with a stock camera app is fast and easy. But what if your consumer’s smartphone does not support native scans? As a business, you can promote one of these best scanning apps as an alternative.
Here are the 7 free best QR Code reader apps for Android and iOS in 2021 –
Kaspersky is infamous for its security features ranging from anti-virus, internet threats, and office security. Here are some reasons why Kaspersky is one of the best QR Code scanner apps for Android and iOS –
Kaspersky is an international cybersecurity company that aims to make scanning QR Codes safe with its mobile app.
It offers Kaspersky’s safety checks that ensure that a QR Code does not lead to a dangerous link or malicious content. It helps keep a history of all QR scans done with the app.
Whenever a user scans a QR Code using the app, it automatically saves the data in the device for easy access for old files, images, and data.
The mobile app is available on both App Store and Google Playstore by the name of Kaspersky QR scanner (App Store) and QR Code Reader and Scanner: App for Android (Google Playstore).
Kaspersky’s is rated as one of the best QR Code readers for Android.
NeoReader is a universal QR Code reader that can scan all standard barcodes such as Data Matrix, QR Codes, Aztec Codes, EAN, UPC, Code 128, and PDF 417.
NeoReader is considered as a top player amongst the ‘Best QR Code scanner apps for Android and iPhone.’ Here’s why –
It detects the barcode type automatically and scans QR Codes from any direction. Users can create their own QR Codes and share them using email, SMS, Facebook, or Twitter.
The app maintains a detailed history of all QR Code scans for future reference. It supports scans using both front and rear cameras. For external URLs, the app confirms the website before visiting them.
The app is very easy to use. One single click and the user is directed to the dedicated webpage.
The QR Droid Private and QR Droid apps have been developed by DroidLa developers. The only difference between both of these is the number of permissions needed to use the app; QR Droid Private requires fewer permissions than QR Droid.
With QR Droid you can create QR Codes for sharing contacts, location paths. bookmarks and installed apps. The sort and group function of these apps help you organize and access QR Code scan history.
It does not open USSD links automatically preventing wipe attacks on your device. The app comes with a QR Droid widget for instant on-screen access.
A majority of smartphones already support native QR Code scanning. Consumers with legacy smartphones can use QR scanner apps for accessing content linked to QR Codes.
Most of the aforementioned QR Code scanner apps are free. The best free QR Code reader app includes Kaspersky’s QR Code scanner, Neo Reader QR Code scanner, and Barcode QR Code scanner app available on Android and iOS.
Together, this comprises the entire consumer market. Businesses can hence leverage QR Codes to maximize return on investment in marketing campaigns.
Beaconstac’s QR Code generator provides the best free QR Codes with a logo. Try it now.
Which QR Code scanner app is safe to download for your smartphone?
Typically, most smartphones can scan a QR Code with the aid of their native camera phone. For users with Android 8 and above, and iOS 11 and above, a QR Code can be scanned using the camera without having to download an external QR Code scanner.
But, for others that have to download a QR Code scanner, follow these steps –
Check if the QR Code is available on Android and iOS operating systems
Check its reviews and offerings
Check if it scans QR Codes without prompting for other actions on your smartphone
We suggest downloading the Kaspersky QR Code scanner since it comes with in-built security to help users ward off any suspicious activities and protect them from it. Kaspersky QR Code scanner offers a secure mobile experience for both iOS and Android users.
Frequently asked questions about QR Code scanner apps
1. What’s the best QR Code scanner app for iPhone and Android?
Kaspersky’s QR Scanner
Scan’s QR Code Reader
QR Droid Private & QR Droid
2. What is the best QR Code scanner app for iPhone and Android?
Kaspersky’s QR Scanner
QR Code Reader by Scan
Free QR Code Reader and Barcode Scanner for iPhone
Quick Scan – QR Code Reader
QR Reader for iPhone
Native camera for iPhone and Android
3. Can you scan a QR Code without an app?
Most smartphones come with an in-built QR Code scanner through the camera. Downloading an extra app just to scan QR Codes won’t be necessary.
There are other ways to scan a QR Code if you don’t own a smartphone –
Online Decoder: If you need to scan a QR Code on a computer but don’t own a smartphone, you can still scan it by using an online decoder. ZXing Decoder Online is one of the best amongst the pack.
Webcam QR Code Decoder: A QR Code can be scanned via a webcam to decode QR Codes as well. Try WebQR to get scanning.
Optical QR Code Scanners: These scanners are an alternative to QR Code apps. They are either handheld or fixed optical scanners that can scan QR Codes. They are typically used for scanning mass QR Codes such as ticketing and billing and need to be connected to software(s) on a computer to get it running.
4. Does my phone have a QR Scanner?
To scan a QR Code, you must have a smartphone. Most smartphones come with an in-built QR Code scanner in their cameras.
To check if your phone has an in-built QR Code scanner, open your camera and point it at a QR Code. If the QR Code directs you to a webpage containing the QR Code details or displays a banner, then your phone has a QR Code scanner.
If not, then you will have to download a QR Code scanner.
5. How can I scan a QR Code with my phone?
Open the camera on your smartphone, position your phone so the QR Code appears in the digital viewfinder and focus on the QR, and launch the QR Code.
If your phone does not support QR Code scanning, then you need to download an app with a QR Code scanner. We recommend Kaspersky’s QR Scanner, NeoReader, and Bar-Code for scanning QR Codes on both iOS and Android phones.
6. Do I need an app to scan a QR Code?
If your smartphone has iOS 11 and above, or Android 8 and above, you do not need to download a third-party app to scan a QR Code using your smartphone’s native camera.
If your smartphone does not have the supporting operating system, then download a QR Code scanner app such as Kaspersky’s QR Scanner, NeoReader, and Bar-Code for scanning QR Codes on both iOS and Android phones.
7. How to scan a QR Code from a screenshot or a picture on my phone?
If your smartphone is equipped with the latest operating system, then you can scan a QR Code from a screenshot or a picture on your phone using Google Lens.
To scan a QR Code using Google Lens, fire up the Lens option on your smartphone to open up the QR Code’s contents. Learn more here.
8. Does the iPhone have an in-built QR Code scanner?
Yes. If your iPhone has iOS 11 and above, you use your smartphone’s native camera app to scan a QR Code.
9. Is a QR Code reader with no ads free?
Yes! Some QR Code reader apps such as Kaspersky’s QR Scanner and QuickMark let you scan QR Codes for free without displaying any ads. Other QR Code scanner apps may charge you a small fee for more advanced features such as removal of ads, continuous scanning, and code export.
10. Do QR Code scanner apps use my mobile phone’s plan data?
QR Code scanner apps require an internet connection, which can either be your mobile phone’s internet plan or a WiFi connection, to load the content inside the QR Code after the code has been scanned.
11. Which is the best QR Code scanner app for Windows PC and Mac?
We recommend using QR Code for Windows 10 for a Windows PC and QR Journal for Mac.
A majority of smartphones already support native QR Code scanning. Consumers with legacy smartphones can use QR scanner apps for accessing content linked to QR Codes. Together, this comprises the entire consumer market. Businesses can hence leverage QR Codes to maximize return on investment in marketing campaigns. Learn how to utilize QR Codes and enrich your marketing campaigns. Schedule a demo now!