These codes are a kind of two dimensional matrix barcode that need special QR barcode readers, though the latest camera phones can also decode them. Though they were created some time ago, it is only very recently that they have started being more commonly used and are likely to become even more popular in the near future. This is because QR codes offer more advantages than linear barcodes and their capacity to store more data makes them more sought after.
For one, Walmart and Starbucks are already in on the QR Code wave by offering coupons and membership benefits with a simple scan of the code.
Flick2Know Technologies, an iAccelerator 2010 company is tapping the QR code space applying cutting edge technologies like 2-D barcoding, virtual reality and m-commerce to give their clients deeper audience engagement channels and service verticals. “Flick2Know Technologies provides innovative mobile solutions to transform traditional and electronic media into high engagement vehicles for brands and consumers,” says founder, Divir Tiwari.
The team at Flick2Know comprises of engineers from ISM Dhanbad. “We had been working on image processing techniques for recognizing different image patterns in our final year project at ISM, Dhanbad,” Divir adds talking about what got them into the QR industry. Pranav Mistry’s Sixth Sense technology, which was a craze amongst the nerds, would have also contributed.
The company, which was established in June 2010, has already started generating revenues and achieved self-sustainability. “We’ll surely look for raising capital in the coming future to scale operations but not before we are done with prototyping & beta launch of our new products in pipe-line.”
The primary barrier that the company had faced was to make people understand QR codes and its significance. Managing cash flows, setting the pricing model and getting the right launch pad have proved to be a few more thorns in their flesh.
Stressing the importance of social media in today’s world, Divir says, “We are primarily using social-media as a marketing tool. Promoting and creating awareness via blog, FB channel and website is the primary source for spreading the word among consumers. We’ve also tied up with different publishers for providing annual print advertisements for better visibility and reach.”
Speaking about their revenue model, wherein it’s free for end customers and publishers are charged, Divij adds, “Our revenue model is a hybrid model. One has to subscribe for using Flick2Know services. The remaining one has to pay according to the usage (pay per scan) and customizations required.”
Attributing credit to iAccelerator for their success, Divir adds, “Few things I would like to mention here about the program is the choice of clients, market segmentation and connections to right people are a big plus for a startup.”
If QR Codes interest you, a closer inspection about the Close Range Technologies might be of interest to you. Also read about the iAccelerator program here. And more about Flick2know on their website.
– Siddharth Krishnaswamy