Live Barcode-Scanning Library Now Available for All iPhone Models

Share Article

New software library lets iPhone apps read regular barcodes in real-time, even on models without an autofocus camera.

Vision Smarts launches their iPhone library for scanning barcodes in real-time. The VSBarcodeScanner software works on all iPhone models (including the original and 3G models, which do not have autofocus). It can read barcodes from the live video, much like a checkout scanner, quickly and accurately. It will be featured in the upcoming version of the popular pic2shop app.

Developers can seamlessly integrate the library into any app related to consumer products. Examples include price comparison, dietary information, user reviews, brand promotion, in-store information, and enterprise applications. Barcode scanning is a very effective and fun way of accessing product information.

The first version of the technology was showcased in the original iPhone app pic2shop (, released in April '09. It dispelled the myth that it was impossible to read regular UPC barcodes using the fixed focus iPhone camera. UPC-A and EAN-13 are the traditional barcodes found on virtually all retail products, from books to cereal boxes. A combination of image processing algorithms and mathematical tools made this achievement possible. Since then, the technology has evolved into the full-featured library that reads barcodes "live" on all iPhone models.

The library is currently available for the Apple iPhone, and will be ported to other platforms.

A major new version of the pic2shop app, featuring the latest "live" scanning technology will be released later this month. Like the previous versions, it will be free.

Using pic2shop, shoppers can quickly access online product information to inform their purchase decisions. They can access online reviews for books, DVDs, games, electronics, etc. They can choose to buy in the store, or to buy online if the price is more attractive. They can even choose to buy a used item for greater savings and to help the environment. Needless to say, snapping a picture of a barcode is more fun and more accurate than typing a title or a model number on the phone's on-screen keyboard. For added convenience, users can email their list of scanned products, for example to review them later from the comfort of their desk. Since the first release, the barcode recognition software has been continuously updated and improved, and hundreds of thousands of shoppers worldwide have installed it on their phone.

Vision Smarts SPRL ( is a company specialized in computer vision and video analysis. Its real-time software libraries make it easy and affordable for application developers to add powerful computer vision features in their products.

Vision Smarts is supported by the Walloon Region of Belgium.

For more information, contact Benoit Maison at +32 484-430-936 or visit our website


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Benoit Maison
Visit website