Despite reports that QR code use has risen some 1,200% in the last year, the codes seem to have a long way to go if they want to be popular with the next generation. According to a recent survey conducted by Dubit, a research firm that has worked with children for more than a decade, QR codes may not be as popular as once believed. The new study was conducted in the UK with more than 1,000 British teenagers.
The survey found that 72% of people between the ages of 11 and 18 are not even aware that their phones need a QR code reading application to be able to scan the codes. Additionally, only 43% knew that their smart phone was capable of reading the codes. Only 33% could accurately identify the codes and another 8% thought they were magic-eye puzzles.
While QR codes are being featured in a number of marketing campaigns around the world, they take up relatively little space. With advertisements being designed to catch the eye of young people, they are unlikely to take a peek at the little, black and white box. In light of this, many advertisers are leery of making the codes more prominent for fear of seeming desperate or detracting attention from what really commands attention.
Dubit’s survey suggests that the codes are, undoubtedly, popular but not with the youth. There is no easy solution to this problem, but companies like Microsoft have taken steps to make the codes more aesthetically appealing with their Microsoft Tags initiative.