Today my reader Roland from Switzerland wrote me the following lines and asked for help with the selection of a QR code scanner for the Mac:
Good evening Jens, In Switzerland, practically all inpayment slips in e-banking business will soon only be possible using the printed QR code as an attachment to paying bills (previously still using the IBAN number).
Since I want to avoid doing my banking with the iPhone, I am looking for a QR code reader that I can use via the USB port on my desktop.
My question to you: is there an Apple-compatible QR code scanner in the accessory trade? I didn't find anything in Switzerland. Thanks for the occasional feedback.
Since I was not aware of which barcode scanners can also read QR codes and are compatible with macOS Catalina or older systems, I had to do some research before I had the right answer (s) ready.
Chapter in this post:
Software solution: QR journal for iSight and webcams
The first - even free - solution is the Mac app QR-Journalwhich can be found in the app store. This uses the iSight camera built into iMac and MacBook models to scan QR codes.
If you own a Mac without a built-in camera, you can also use any iSight-compatible camera. If I got it right, any webcam that the Mac can recognize without additional drivers would be considered.
Compatibility with Swiss eBanking
At first I wasn't sure whether the software could also be used in conjunction with the eBanking app that Roland has to use in Switzerland. But he was so friendly and gave me direct feedback:
Thank you, Jens, it works wonderfully with the app you submitted in the link! I had already tried various other QR apps, without success! But it's very easy with the QR Journal. Reading in via the webcam also works. However, this should be different within the numerous banking institutions. (vive la federation Suisse, grin!).
USB handheld scanner with macOS compatibility
The hardware solution is probably the better option in the area of eBanking, since it works with every Mac app. A suitable model with support for macOS from version 10.12 (Sierra) and higher is the CSL barcode and QR code scanner. Since this scanner comes with a USB-A connector, a USB-C to USB-A adapter is required to connect it to current MacBook models. You can go here without hesitation the inexpensive adapter cables from Amazon Basics use.
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The CSL scanner decodes many types of 1D and 2D barcodes at high speed including QR, Data Matrix, PDF417 and many others.
Compatible 1D barcodes
In the area of barcodes, the CSL scanner offers support for the following codes:
- 2of5 Datalogic, 2of5 Interleaved
- Code93, Code11, Code39, Code39 full ASCII, Code128
- EAN8, EAN13, EAN14, EAN128
- UPC-A, UPC-E
- GS1 RSS14, GS1 RSS14 stacked, GS1 Limited
Compatible 2D barcodes
The scanner supports these variants for two-dimensional codes:
- PDF 417, PDF417 90 digits
- QR code, QR code 90 digit
- Data matrix, data matrix 90 digit
- Aztec, Aztec 90 digit
I hope you get on with this information. I would be interested in which areas of application you use the two scanner solutions and whether everything works for you.
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He acts as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with technical problems. In his spare time he rides electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with the iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions to current bugs.
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