We’re implementing an access control system where people bring a code, printed or on a smartphone (their choice), to get access.

We are free in the choice of code system, as long as it’s capable of encoding a 14-digit alpha-numeric string. QR works, as well as Code128.

We want to allow scanning with off-the-shelf Android devices. Our first idea was to use a barcode scanning app, but the autofocus of the camera is too slow and each scan takes around 10 - 20 seconds. Sometimes, e.g. on a sunny day, the camera-based scanner would not even work at all.

What we’re looking for now is an external scanner with the following features:

  • Runs with Android.
  • Connects via Bluetooth (prefered) or USB.
  • Able to read from a smartphone screen or paper, even under non-ideal conditions.
  • Easy configuration and usage for less tech-savvy users.
  • Ideally some kind of targeting assistance, e.g. a red dot/line/cross.
  • Ideally 100 Euros or less; hopefully not more than 200.

I have found several cheap laser scanners on Amazon and ordered one of them. It is pretty solid and works nicely with paper, but I didn’t know that this type of scanner cannot scan from smartphone displays.

  • Bit off topic, but I just wanted to let you know that the link to Tixys on your profile seems to be dead. – JMY1000 Feb 8 '18 at 21:39
  • @JMY1000: Thanks for the notice, but I just tried the links on my SE/SO/Network profiles, and they seem to be ok. Do you remember an error message? Or did the request time out? Thanks! – lxg Feb 9 '18 at 10:30
  • Seems to be good now! It wasn't able to resolve the domain name. – JMY1000 Feb 9 '18 at 11:04
  • Thanks! Maybe some network hiccup at my hosting ISP. – lxg Feb 9 '18 at 11:04

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