No doubt all of us have seen barcode scanners. The most common example would be that of supermarkets, where at the billing counter, an employee will scan each of the items you purchase and will add the prices to your bill. It would be unimaginably taxing to individually check each price and add the amount to the previous numbers and to finally provide a compiled bill. Barcode scanners make the job look easy.
But scanners aren’t used in only supermarkets. In today’s world, barcodes are everywhere. Every package we get in the mail, almost all apps, online payments, airplane tickets and even hoarding boards and advertisement have QR (Quick Response) codes we can scan using our smartphones.
The major advantage of a barcode scanner is the fact that it is much faster than an individual who has to enter each value individually. It also removes the chance of human error, as an employee might enter the incorrect value and end up producing an incorrect bill. Therefore, a barcode scanner is the ideal instrument required for every retail institution.
A barcode is basically a pattern of vertical black lines and white spaces, with a numerical code under it. The pattern stores the data which might correspond to the price or other such data. As soon as a valid scanner is used to scan the code, the relevant information shows up on the output device, usually a computer screen. The information usually stored for retail purposes is the price of the individual item or its inventory data.
The most commonly used type of barcode scanner is:
- The Charge Coupled Device, also known as the CCD scanner, which consists of a red laser light which is used to scan the barcode.
- 1D scanners are able to scan only barcodes and are the traditional type.
- 2D scanners, on the other hand, are able to scan both bar codes as well as QR codes.
Today, even cordless Bluetooth Scanners are available, which remove the issue of restriction of movement.
Also, we have compiled a list of the best barcode scanners in India right now. You can pick one up and get going instantly.
Best Barcode Scanners in India
|Best Barcode Scanners||Scans per Second||Drop Distance||Warranty||Buy Now|
|TVSE BSC 101 Bar Code Scanner||330||1 meter||1 year||Check the Price|
|RETSOL LS 450 Barcode Scanner||100||1.5 meters||2 years||Check the Price|
|SYGA Barcode Scanner||150||1.5 meters||2 years||Check the Price|
|Pegasus PS1146 Barcode Scanner||300||NA||2 years||Check the Price|
|iBall 2.4GHz Barcode Scanners (WBS-650MV)||300||1.5 meters||1 year||Check the Price|
|Honeywell Eclipse 5145 Barcode Scanner||72||1.5 meters||3 years||Check the Price|
|Zebra Symbol LS2208 Laser Barcode Scanner||100||1.5 meters||5 years||Check the Price|
Top Barcode Scanners in India (2019) – Reviews
The BS-C 101 barcode scanner is manufactured by TVSE, one of the leading barcode scanner manufacturers in the world. They provide a wide range of barcode scanners but BS-C 101 is their leading product. It is packed with features and capable of scanning 330 codes every minute which is an unprecedented feature at this price range that made this our top pick of 2019.
This high-speed scan and the accuracy is really something to be remembered by, but it happens due to the increased resolution of 2500 pixels.
A 650 mm visible laser diode is used as the light source for this handheld scanner. It is a normal feature for a barcode scanner of this category.
If you pry open the scanner you will find that it a 32-bit processor is used for the operation and performance which is a standard practice.
Now, the scan angle is 52 degree, which means that even if you place the scanner at a specific angle, it will decipher the code. With a depth of field between 0-300 mm, this barcode scanner is very accurate. It can decode any barcodes if they are 1 dimensional.
The dimension of the product is 24.9 x 10.2 x 7.6 cm and it weighs only 250 grams. Standard 2.0 mm connecting cables are included in the package and 1-year warranty is provided with the product.
Other Notable Features
- Scan Rate
The BS-C 101 barcode scanner comes with a very high scan rate. The scan rate is 330 scans per second which is far better and faster than any other barcode scanners available at this price range.
The Red, Blue and Green coloured LED lights are attached to the scanner; they are convenient and gives it a fantastic look.
- Hands-free Operations
You will be able to fix the scanner on a stand and then set it up for auto scans. The installation is very easy, just plug and play operation.
The TVSE BS-C 101 will make your life a lot easier with its easy and accurate billing process. The decoding accuracy is just amazing; you will never miss or get the wrong price. The hands-free operation is very convenient. Just plug, aim and shoot at the barcodes. The trigger is accessible with your thumb and the material is very strong and sturdy. Overall, it’s an amazing product which can be handled for hours with ease. Moreover, it is perfectly suitable for quick scanning without any glitches.
What We Liked
- It is the best barcode scanner you can get, with ridiculously high scan speed that rivals even heavy duty industrial scanners.
- Both manual and automatic scanning available.
- Durable and sturdier than most of the scanners of same categories.
- It is easy to operate; even the beginner level customers can use it.
- Good depth of field which is between 0-300 mm.
- The scanner uses a 32-bit processor which increases the speed and the accuracy of the scanner.
What We Didn’t Like
- There is no IP rating; so, it is vulnerable to damage if exposed to dust or moisture.
- The drop resistance is just 1 meter; it is good but lower than other barcode scanners in the same category.
- Not suitable for rough environments.
- The scan angle is 52 degree which is lower than other scanners of the same segment.
The LS 450 barcode scanner is very closely matched to our top contender. It is designed by RETSOL, a company focused on Auto Identification and Data capturing Technologies. This is a laser barcode scanner, a single thread of laser comes out the scanner that offers high-performance data capture and data catalogue as efficiently as possible. The 1-dimensional barcodes can easily be scanned by this product, directly from the paper even if the printing is poor. Due to its laser sharp accuracy of this scanner, we put it in the second place on our list.
Now, this scanner supports any 1-dimensional code scanning, including EAN-8, EAN-13, UPC-A, UPC-E, Code 39, Code 128, EAN 128, Codabar, Industrial 2 of 5, Interleave 2 of 5, Matrix 2 of 5, MSI etc.
A 32-bit CPU is used in this product for faster scanning rate, the precision is high and the decoding speed is 100 times per second.
The LS 450 is IP 54 water resistant; it ensures exceptional performance even during harsh conditions.
The scanner also has wide system compatibility; it is capable of uploading barcodes on Windows, Linux and even on Mac. The uploaded files are stored as Word, Excel or as other software applications. It supports USB interface. There is a buzzer and a light indication attached to it. The print contrast is 30% is UPC, 100% is EAN.
The scanner has a 2 Meter straight cable that operates on 5 V DC and the operating current is 85mA.
The scanner operates up to 40 C temperature but it can be stored at a 70 C container. 5% to 85% relative humidity works with the scanner but it is non-condensing. It is drop resistant but only up to 1.5 meters.
It comes with a 2 years offsite warranty.
Other Notable Features
- The Visible Laser Diode
It comes with a visible 650 mm laser diode which is very effective. It works on different angles like YAW 65 degree, rotation 3 degree and Pitch 55 degree. Manual and continuous scanning is available.
- Anti-Shock and Durable
This was designed using pristine quality ABS and PC combined body. So, even if you become a bit rough and touch with, it will not hinder your tasks.
This is a very suitable and effective barcode scanner available at such a price. It is water resistant and drop-proof from certain heights and the visible laser diode makes the decoding very accurate. Unfortunately, it can’t read barcodes from a screen or if the code is wrapped with a silver foil paper that reflects light. Aside from this small issue, this is a good product.
What We Liked
- Easily operable, even a novice can use it.
- The one hand use makes it very suitable for retail.
- The scan distance is good, regardless of its price and size.
- Both manual and auto detect modes are available.
- The cord is 2 meters long, which is unusually long and very useful.
- The cord is also very durable and sturdy, perfect for rough usage.
- Compatible with Mac, Windows and even with Linux.
- It is capable of decoding various 1-dimensional codes from any given angles.
- The scan is speed is good, 100 scans per second.
- The build quality is also very good in this price range.
What We Didn’t Like
- This is not a cordless scanner, which makes it not suitable for big industries.
- Does not support smartphones or tables.
- Only USB 2.0 support is available.
- It is unable to read barcodes from glossy surfaces.
- You won’t find a stand inside the package.
- Does not work with And
At the third position comes the barcode scanner designed by SYGA, very suitable for small or medium companies. It is a high performing and cost-effective scanner with fast scanning rate, depth of field and wide scanning angles. The ergonomic design is excellent, easy to use and there is an anti-drop grip for safety.
Although this product does not belong to any reputed company, its effectiveness and feature packed portfolio is hard to deny. The rubber balls on both sides of the scanner are quite different from the others on the market; they are designed to protect the scanner from any hard fall.
This handheld scanner comes with a visible laser diode of 650 mm light source, which is a very standard practice in the industry.
With a drop resistance of 1.5 meters, the gun-shaped design makes it comfortable to hold and suitable for any hand size. The plug and play design is very efficient, makes it portable.
This 1-dimensional barcode scanner supports USB 2.0 interface. The kit can be used for data transfer and connectivity. Both manual and automatic scanning modes are available for 1 dimension scanning. The scanned data can be stored on different devices with different Operating Systems like Linux, Windows, and iOS.
The dimension of the scanner is 172*76*96 with a scan distance of 60 cm.
Other Notable Features
With the maximum scanning angle of 60 degree, this scanner is capable of different type of 1 dimensional codes like UPC-E, Code 39, UPC-A, EAN-8, Codabar, ISBN/ISSN, UK/PLESSEY, Matrix 2 of 5, EAN-13, Interleaved 2 of 5, Code128, Code 11, MSI/PIESSEY, Code 93, Industrial 2 of 5, UCC/EAN128 code etc. It is also capable of making 150 scans per second.
- Rubberized Shell
There are protective rubberized shells on both sides of this scanner made of ABS, PC and PVC.
SYGA is not a known name in the electronic industry but all these features are very hard to overlook. This is an amazing barcode scanner with a 2.0 USB interface and a visible 650 mm laser diode. The ergonomic gun design makes it a big hit. It is also drop resistant but only up to 1.50 meters. Therefore, this is an amazing product, worth every penny.
What We Liked
- There is a protective shell which increases the longevity of the scanner.
- The error rate is very low, only one per 5 million scans.
- With a scanning rate of 150 scans per second, it rivals most of the scanners under similar price range.
- Both manual and automatic modes are available.
- The scanning angle is 60 degree which is standard for this price range.
- Capable of scanning most 1-dimensional codes.
- IP 42 certification makes it resistant to water and dust.
What We Didn’t Like
- This scanner is not compatible with Android or tablets.
- Only supports USB 2.0 interface, makes the use very limited.
- It is IP 42 certified but most of the scanner at this range comes with IP 54 certification.
- The number of authorized service centres is very limited.
As an Indian company, Pegasus strives to make a dent in the electronic tech business, and they have been successful at it. They are offering the cheapest handheld barcode scanner, it is called the Pegasus PS1146 and available in the bestseller segment at Amazon and the fourth best barcode scanner on our list.
Suitable for small or medium-size businesses like retail, healthcare, office and industrial uses, this barcode scanner is very compact; the ease of operation and fast scanning rate is also packed with features that made us look into it even more.
The PS1146 barcode scanner comes with a visible 650 mm diode laser which is a standard practice.
Although this particular barcode scanner comes with only manual scanning mode, barcode scanners from other brands of similar price range also come with an automatic mode.
The depth of scanning field is 250 mm which is a very standard number from a scanner of this price range but it is capable of scanning only single lines with a maximum length of 20 cm.
It supports a variety of interfaces like USB-HID, USB-COM, PS2 and RS-232.
The dimension of the product is 155*65*85 mm, which makes it a very compact device.
There is a 2-year warranty for repair and replacement including labor and parts.
Other Notable Features
- Fast Scanning
Like all the other barcode scanners on this list, Pegasus PS1146 has fast scanning capabilities but it has taken it to the next level with a scan speed of 300 scans per second. It even rivals the speed of industrial scanners.
- 1-Dimensional Barcode Scanner
This 1-dimensional barcode scanner supports various barcodes like EAN-8 EAN-13, UPC-A, UPC-E, Code39, Code128, EAN-128, Codabar, Industrial 2 of 5,Interleave 2 of 5,Matrix 2 of 5,MSI, China postcode etc.
In our opinion, this is a well-built barcode scanner whose speed even rivals the likes of heavy duty industrial scanners. Besides the manual option, this barcode scanner has everything from a visible 650 mm diode laser to a 2-year replacement warranty. 300 scans every second makes it is a reasonable choice for potential customers. Fast, sturdy and a value for money device!
What We Liked
- Very accurate and high rate scans.
- The error rate is also very low, even the damaged or smudged barcodes can be read with the scanner.
- Designed with ABS thermoplastic material, which makes it resistant to heat. Other scanners in similar price range come with PVC material which is not heat resistant.
- A compact lightweight product, easy to operate.
- The company also claims that it has a shockproof design.
What We Didn’t Like
- Only compatible with Windows OS whereas other scanners of the same price range provide compatibility with several systems including iOS, Linux, Android etc.
- The automatic scanning capability is absent.
- There is no IP rated protection against dust, moisture or water.
- No drop resistant numbers were provided by the company.
The iBall WBS-650MV is a high-performance barcode reader with laser-sharp accuracy. It comes with a USB receiver and works at 2.4 GHz using wireless technology. Considering the price range, the wireless capability is excellent, which got it placed at the fifth position on our list.
The ergonomic design of the product is very suitable for retail and warehouses. It supports 4 mil barcodes and the wireless function is quite convenient.
It comes with a high-performance laser barcode reader. The reading performance is very aggressive, suitable for fast and accurate data entry application. It has a scan rate of 300 scans per second.
The device is shelled with a combination of ABS and PC. The dimension is 15.4 x 8.5 x 6.2 cm. The weight is only 182 grams, makes it a really compact device. It is lightweight and there are Indicators, Beeper and vibrations are available to for indicating purposes.
It has a drop resistance of 1.5 meters and operating non-condensing humidity is 5% to 85%.
It supports USB interface, the built-in memory is 1 MB. All standard 1-dimensional barcodes are readable with this scanner.
The iBall WBS-650MV comes with a 1-year warranty.
Other Notable Features
- The Wireless Connection
The 2.4 GHz wireless tech along with a USB receiver makes it one of the unique products at this price range. The working distance is 100 meters.
This barcode scanner uses a Lithium battery of 2200mAh. A mini USB charger is included with the length of 1.30 meters. The charging time is 6 hours.
Overall, this is one of the best barcode scanners at this price range. The potential customers mainly get attracted by its wireless capability, which is very rare at this price. Comes with all the bells and whistles, uses a good 2200mAh lithium battery and comes with only a year of warranty.
What We Liked
- This is a handheld barcode scanner, comes with a compact design and a hardy shell for longevity.
- The scan rate is 300 scans per second which is great.
- The 2.4 GHz wireless function is one of a kind.
- A 2200mAh lithium battery is added for operation.
- A mini charging cable is added with a length of 1.30 meters, it is very convenient.
- It has a drop distance of 1.5 meters.
What We Didn’t Like
- The interface only supports USB.
- Only 1 MB of storage space is available.
- Customers reported about very complicated instruction manual
Honeywell is a multi-national company and a big name in electronic tech. They are responsible for various improvements on modern-day barcode scanners and some of them are implemented on their Eclipse handheld laser barcode scanners which got it placed at the sixth position on our list.
But if you look at the device closely, you will find that this barcode scanner is a bit too expensive for its features but it is always a good idea to get a product designed by a top class brand, it gives you a peace of mind.
This is a very high quality barcode scanner made with top class materials; a 650 mm visible laser diode is attached to it for accuracy, which is very standard for scanners at this price range. It can decode any 1-dimensional codes and GS1 DataBar.
The scanner is also made of durable materials; it can withstand a drop from 1.5 meters. The scratch resistant glass at the front of the diode increases the longevity of the product.
The dimension of the scanner is 169 mm x 63 mm x 51 mm. Weighing only 100 grams; this is one of the lightest barcode scanners available at this price range. Now, the scanner can withstand 5% to 95% relative humidity and it is non-condensing. Environmental sealing is also available to resist airborne particles, to resist contamination.
This is a barcode scanner that is compatible with all the Server version of Windows 2000.
The Honeywell Eclipse 5145 comes with a 3 years warranty provided by the manufacturer.
Other Notable Features
- Supported Interfaces
This barcode scanner not only supports USB interface but also RS-232, Keyboard Wedge, IBM 468xx (RS485).
- Codegate and ColdSense Technology
Codegate tech by Honeywell is installed in this scanner. It means that all the information will be obtained very easily, with just push of a button. Another feature, exclusive to Honeywell is added to this scanner is Codegate Tech; it means that the barcode scanner can be activated by detecting the barcode, without even pushing a button.
Overall, this is a good barcode scanner but it is too expensive compared to other barcode scanners with the same features. The interface is versatile and the compatibility is good but the scan speed is a bit too slow. The scan angle is also low, at 52 degrees but comes with a 3 years warranty which is commendable.
What We Liked
- The build quality and the finish are excellent, not usual for barcode scanners of this range.
- Supports various interfaces, suitable for retail owners.
- It is a very compact device and easy to use.
- The Codegate and ColdSense Technology
- 3years of warranty
What We Didn’t Like
- The scan rate is extremely slow, only 72 scans per second. The scan rate is much lower than other scanners at this range; it is also lower if you compare it to the price range.
- The scan angle is also low, at 52 degrees.
- It only supports all versions of Windows Server 2000, the users of Mac, iOS and Android will be disappointed.
- The maximum scan distance is only 14 cm.
Zebra is one of the most famous barcode scanner manufacturers; they are a subsidiary of the world famous Motorola company. The Zebra Symbol LS2208 is a great barcode scanner which is very similar to Honeywell’s Eclipse. It is a bit expensive but you can be sure that the quality is excellent and we place it in the seventh position on our list.
As per the claim of the company, it is one of the bestselling barcode scanners in the world, and the claim is very hard to ignore if you look at the fact that it supports 98 major languages in the world. It also supports Android and tablets, which is a feature missing from most of the scanners at this range.
This is also a handheld barcode scanner with a 650 mm laser diode, which is visible. It is quite standard for this price range. The scan frequency is 50Hz and it uses a bi-directional scanning type. The scanning speed is not excellent but good. 100 scans every second.
The scanning angle is 60 degree which is adequate for handheld scanners. You can also supply power externally, which is a very unique feature for a product of this price range.
The dimensions are 152*63*84 mm. It weighs only 150 grams. The drop distance is 1.5 meters which is very normal. A very small, light-weight and compact product.
The company provides 5 years of warranty starting from the date of the shipment.
Other Notable Features
- The 1-dimensional Codes
This barcode scanner is capable of scanning different variations of bar codes; UPC/EAN/Supplements, Codabar, Code 93, Code 39/Full ASCII/TriOptic, Code 11, UPC/ EAN 128, Interleaved 2 of 5, Code 128/Full ASCII, GS1 DataBar (formerly RSS) variants, Discrete 2 of 5, MSI, , IATA, Chinese 2 of 5.
It supports USB interface, as well as RS-232, Keyboard Wedge, IBM 468x/9x.
From the first glance, this looks like a good compact barcode scanner that stands out among the crowd. Manufactured by a well-accomplished company, it is a bit expensive but it is sturdy and durable. The scan speed is good but not great and the scanning angle is adequate. Overall, this is a potent product!
What We Liked
- The build quality is excellent with a top-notch design
- Supports Android devices and tablets, a unique feature among the scanner of the same range.
- Supports a variety of interfaces.
- Supplying power externally is possible.
- Supports 98 of the major languages from all over the world.
- The drop distance is 1.5 meters.
- An IP rating of 20 is available to protect against water and dust.
- The plug and play installation makes it easy to operate.
What We Didn’t Like
- Quite an expensive product compared to its competitors.
- The scan speed is good but considering the price, it should have been greater.
- IP 20 rating is available whereas the competitors are providing IP 54.
- At this price, the 2D scanning capability should have been included.
Buying Guide: Barcode Scanners
Barcode is also widely used for asset management in companies. In this case, the information stored is about the employee and about where these can be found quickly. This eases the process of managing inventory assets and fixed assets for the company. Keeping a track of the inventory production and stocks keeps the organization informed about the whole transaction, inventory, leftovers and theft. It can help them remove the excess stocks and maintain a good turn-over ratio.
What is a Barcode Scanner?
A barcode scanner is a simple device that helps to read this code and matches it with the information stored in the database. Both barcode and barcode scanners are an essential part of every business or trading organization. It plays an important role in increasing the efficiency of a business.
Barcode scanners can read the linear barcode which is a combination of vertical lines and blank spaces. The number of characters this can store varies from 20-25. This can be detected using a simple barcode scanner. There is a light source which reads the lines and spaces.
To store more information, barcode use both vertical and horizontal lines. This can be detected using an advanced scanner. This has moving parts along with a very strong light source.
Varieties of Barcode scanner
There is a wide range of barcode scanners available in the market today. Production has risen, so has the demand for this product. All you need to figure out is the expectations and requirements you have from a barcode scanner as per your unique business practices. But, before you derive a conclusion out, regarding the kind of barcode scanner you wish to purchase, let’s have an insight on the classification of barcode scanners and also, how the barcode types are different from each other.
This is the most popular type of scanner and you usually come across such scanners more than often in your daily life. Barcode consists of black and white spaces or stripe-like images which are read by this barcode scanner. This is done by reflection reading with the help of a red diode. If you wish to go for the most cost-effective option, these barcodes will fulfill the requirement. However, these barcodes are only capable of being able to read standard linear (1D) barcodes.
As the laser beam passes from the barcode scanner, it is able to read barcodes from a distance of 2 to 12 inches away. But, there are some special models which have a higher intensity level and can read barcodes from a distance as far as 20 feet and even beyond. Talking about the advanced scanner, there are the Wasp Barcode Scanners, which can actually read barcodes from an impeccable distance of 35 feet away.
This class of scanners is the most frequently bought option because they cost considerably less than their peers. But, the drawback here is that they have a limited capability and quite rigid with the few features they provide. Something which is expected when the prices are low!
2. Linear Imager
The similar characteristic of linear imager scanners to that of the laser scanners is that both of them are capable of reading only the 1D barcodes i.e., the standard linear barcodes. However, the linear imager works in a different way and different technology as compared to the laser scanner. These scanners usually take a picture of the barcodes and then carefully visualize it to extract the information out of the code. They don’t work in the laser’s way of reading the reflection of barcodes which is the reason why they work faster, because they are actually visualizing an image. This, as a result, increases the efficiency in terms of processing of the scanner and also the resulting time consumption.
These scanners can actually operate at dim light surrounding because they do not need reflections of any kind. These scanners are also a better option because they would work and extract information out of even worn and torn barcodes or damaged or of slightly lesser quality.
Linear imager scanner actually provides better performance as compared to the laser scanner in a price range which is nearly just the same. If you compare the prices of both the scanners, you will find no difference in the same with better performance displayed by the linear imager scanner. This is a major reason why these scanners have become a widely preferred choice over the laser scanner.
3. 2-Dimensional Area Imagers
The technology and the process of processing the barcode used by 2D Area Imagers Scanner are the same as the Linear Imager scanner i.e., it captures a picture of the barcode and then analyzes it. The differentiated feature of these scanners is that they can read any kind of barcodes, an added advantage over the standard linear barcode. To be precise, 2D Area Imagers Scanner can read and visualize 1D, stacked and 2D barcodes.
Another great ability these scanners possess is in regards to the orientation. It is usually for the laser and linear imager scanners that the barcode’s indicator needs to be in a horizontal fashion for the scanners to be able to read the barcodes. This is an exception for the 2D Area Imagers scanners though, these scanners click a picture which is a lot more detailed and captured in an intelligent manner following which they can actually read codes from literally any direction or orientation.
The indicator need not be essentially aligned in the same direction as the barcode, as they can intelligently read barcodes from any direction, i.e. portrait or even landscape. Being able to read barcodes multidimensional is referred to as being omnidirectional by many manufacturers. The emergence of the scanner’s name is from the processing way, similar to the linear scanners, capturing an area.
These scanners visualize the images in a detailed fashion and alongside the additional benefits and features; they are frequently gaining recognition in the industrial sector in order to speed up the scanning applications procedure and also to increase barcodes usage in a number of other ways.
Another great significance of these scanners is that they can read barcodes off any surface, be it on computer screens, product labels or adhesive label barcode.
4. CCD Barcode Scanners
CCD here is referred to as Charge Couple Devices and these scanners are made up with placing a miniature sensor in the front-end of the readers. These scanners work by producing a waveform which gets in contact with the bars and spaces resulting in the decoding of the information from the barcodes. The decoded information is then forwarded to a computer.
5. Pen Readers and Barcode Wands
You may refer to these scanners as a combination of both the technologies because the tip of the scanners is made up both by placing a light source and also a photodiode. All the user needs to do is, drag that particular tip on a barcode following which a waveform will be produced which fits onto the spaces in between the bars. This would decode the information and then pass it onto a computer system.
We are sure by now you would have already figured out which kind of barcode you are in need of. It is time we move further and take the next factor into consideration, which is the form- factor. The form factor here means the kind of shape the scanner would be in. The most basic shape for a barcode scanner is the gun style scanner and the in-counter scanner which can be found all around you in various stores you visit on a daily basis. But there actually are 5 popular form factors possessing an individual set of merits and demerits, which would differ according to your need and use.
The most commonly used scanners is the handheld one. They are absolutely easy to use and operate and are the best for the work they perform. The way of using this scanner is to aim it directly at the barcode and click on the trigger present in the model. These scanners come as wired and also cordless. The cordless one is in demand because of the absence of issues related to the wires and also increased mobility.
These scanners are not meant to be held by hand as they are supposed to be placed at the countertop, facilitating handless operation. One does not need to pick the scanner and do the job and therefore it does not need any kind of triggers. These scanners are omnidirectional in nature which makes it easy for them to read barcodes in any direction. These scanners are capable of covering a wide area reading, a downside of the handheld scanners which are unidirectional. This is the reason why they are actually used mostly in the retail and departmental outlets where bulks of products need to be scanned. Since there is a reduction in the need for aiming, they are able to scan a lot of items absolutely quickly. All, the user needs to do it, bring up the item’s barcode in front of the scanner and the scanner would do the remaining job.
3. Mobile Computer
It is usually that other scanners need to be connected to the computer system, but for the mobile computers, both the PC and the scanner are present in the same device. They are embedded with a lot of features which are more than what the basic scanners do. One can move the scanner around easily since there is no connection or equipment required. These systems work in the fashion of saving the information gathered in internal storage or by sharing the same via Wi-Fi or WAN network. These scanners are used in places like industries where high mobility is required in order to keep a check on inventory management and asset tracking.
4. In Counter
These scanners are similar to that of the presentation scanner in the way they are placed on the counter and how a product’s barcode simply displayed in front of the scanner will read the barcode easily. The difference is, they are meant to be placed on the countertop. These are vastly used in the grocery store and self check-out stores with most of the models embedded in the POS line.
5. Fixed Mount
Speaking in terms of specialization, these scanners occupy the top position. Because of the largely automated system integrated within them. They are not integrated with any kind of buttons or triggers to scan and are to be placed up against a conveyor line or kiosk. They are always switched on and have sensors which trigger external controllers. The models available in the market vary and they vary in terms of the speed they can work at.
Know your Business Requirements
As mentioned before, it is the first thing you must consider while buying a barcode scanner. Here are some examples of how the nature of your business may have an impact on the barcode scanner you need. Durable and rugged scanners are the priority of the utility companies in order to stand grounded in extreme weather conditions. Warehouses demand different in-house scanners for easy inventory management which are a lot more durable because they would be frequently used at the loading and unloading docks.
Lighting conditions are also a thing and some companies demand effect scanners for dim light as well as wireless connectivity feature. Go through the below-mentioned points which will help you know your unique business requirements.
- Indoor or outdoor use, or both: If you want a scanner for outdoor use, your consideration must be a rugged and durable scanner. If you wish to measure the exact durability of the scanner, search for a scanner which has an IP rating to that of IP54 or IP65. This IP rating determines the power of the scanner in regards to environmental hazards.
- What kind of symbols do you need to scan: Assets or a barcode tag is usually displayed in symbols ranging from 1D and 2D to PDF417, Postal, OCR, DPM, and others. Determine the kind of symbols and what the scanners which would scan them. Some scanners can scan diversified symbols, whereas some can on scan 1D and 2D.
- Will you use the scanner frequently: Do you need to scan a ton of devices one after another or a few ones limiting your activity? Some scanners can scan many images per second whereas some would take some time to scan.
- Is your work environment hazardous: Even the activities performed indoor can affect the barcode scanners and if your line of work is actually hazardous, consider scanners of with an IP rating of IP54 or IP65.
- Determine the scanning distance: The distance by which you need to actually scan the matter of the code as well. Determine the distance in inches or feet and select the scanner which would perform as per the described distance requirement.
- Is there a lot of mobility for the workers and assets: If your workers actually need to move a lot, scanning tons of items around the clock, a wireless scanner should be your sole choice. Make sure you make the decision as per your needs.
Important Specification of Bar Code Scanners
Once you have figured out your business requirements, go through all the specifications in detail and evaluate the end need.
The scanner has to be connected to a PC in order to communicate all the information it decodes. This started with the traditional ways wherein the connectivity was only via cords and cables. These are still on the run because of the reliable connectivity and cheaper prices. Cordless scanners have started gaining significance as well because of their affordable prices and also lack of wires. Corded scanners are highly-mobile and connected generally via Bluetooth.
Even though you have a decent work environment, choosing a rugged scanner will result to be in the best of your interest. Any possibility of mistreatment arises and rugged scanners can actually stand them. This is because rugged scanners are dustproof and also shockproof, withstanding up to 6-feet drops. They are a bit expensive but are great long term investments.
Mobility and Bluetooth Connectivity
You might have considered a cordless scanner is your need but it is important to know that all the cordless barcode scanners do not generally have the same functions. Some scanners have a stored chip in the handle which stores in all the data and is required to be updated every now and then.
If you want the provision of timely update and evaluation of the items you are entering, a Bluetooth device is what you are in need of as they are tethered to a system facilitating instant update.
Power and charging requirements
Companies may have an employee working with the scanner for a duration of 10-12 hours which makes it extremely important for you to actually check on the battery retaining the power of the scanner. Some scanners have extended life batteries which are suitable at long field operations. It is always on the safer side to keep some spare batteries handy.
Software Compatibility and Additional Functionality
Each barcode works in a way and some companies are even required to make their own custom software application through an SDK. Choose a barcode scanner which is actually compatible with your existing software application.
Types of Barcodes
Barcode is the system of categorizing different objects. This is easy to perform because each of the products available in the market has a different set of unique numbers and barcodes helps determine the same. Each barcode has a special algorithm according to which it stores data.
A. One-Dimensional (1D) Barcode Types
Linear or 1D barcode is the collection of encoded data in a series having different width lines and spaces.
- Code 39
It is the oldest, yet widely used code. It is basic linear code finding operations in electronics, healthcare, and other such sectors. It is an inclusion of all the 128 ASCII characters. The contents of Code 39 have character, an optional check character, a stop character and data digits,
It is of a higher density linear code and is used in worldwide packing and shipping industry. It is generally known for its simplicity and has a large amount of data encoded.
Interleaved 2 of 5
This barcode is just a combination of numerical which is combined in a set of 2. This code is used in warehouse operations and typically need to be in even as a result of which a 0 is added in case of odd numbers.
The abbreviation is for Universal Product Code and is used commonly over all areas of operations. Every product is given a unique 12 digit code which is assigned GS1 (Global Standard Organization) found at retail and shopping centre.
International Article Number
It abbreviates to EAN and is a combination of 13 digits for all the literature industry for identifying bookstores and libraries. These 13 digits and are made from International Standard Book Numbers (ISBN).
B. Two-Dimensional (2D) Barcode Types
2D barcodes are a combination of all such figures and symbols encoded in the patterns of geometrical shapes like hexagons, squares etc. These figures are arranged both vertical and horizontal fashion and are a reason why they are referred to as 2 Dimensional. These bars are smaller than the 1D bars but have much more storage capacity i.e. up to 2000 characters.
These bars are found in government documents like Aadhar Cards and Driver’s License. They are 4 times larger than normal 2D bars and store a range of data in a sophisticated way.
- Data Matrix
Being the most used barcode, they are widely put up in the go-to barcodes in electronics, healthcare and software industries.
- QR codes
They are the most popular code because of their use in web applications. They have lesser storage capacity but are popular because they can be read even by Smartphones or a simple bar code reader application.
How Barcode Scanners Work
A computer cannot identify human language i.e. 0-9 alphabets but rather uses a special language in the form of black and white lines distinctively for different numbers. These codes are difficult to be read by human and this is where the need for barcode scanner arises. The working of a barcode scanner is simple too.
A barcode scanner consists of 3 essential parts, namely illuminator, scanner and decoder.
- An illuminator shines over a red beam of light onto the barcode making it easy to be read.
- The scanner actually has a built-in photoelectric cell which traces the light which reflects the black and the white lines, deriving a voltage fluctuation in the form of a wavy pattern if it is jolted down on a graph.
- The decoder saves the image sent by the scanner and manages to successfully derive or extract the information out of it.
These scanners first record, and then translate the barcode into digits. This extracted information is sent to the computer database which stores all the barcode digits. The computer finds an item that matches the barcode after scanning them. Later, the information stored in the bars is displayed on the computer. Generally, it will include the number of items in stock, the price and the name of the item. In advanced barcode, a picture if the item is also displayed. Now you can change the stock value if it has increased, change the price or the description of the item too.
A barcode scanner helps to connect with the point of sale system of the organization. They can read all kinds of barcode very quickly and extract all the information you need. It can be connected to the database either through a wireless or wired medium. The most useful part of a barcode scanner is that it helps you update information about the product. So, this is the best way to track and audit the stock information of a business organization.
Is it important to consider a rugged scanner for my standard business organisation?
Indoor businesses having a standard environment, and hence, do not need a rugged scanner because there is hardly any chance of the scanner getting in contact with harmful particles. However, it would be a great option to go for a rugged one because the normal scanner cannot handle drops and there is a possibility it might be dropped by your employees.
Should I consider scanners only as per the price?
Price is hardly a factor here. It is the requirement you have with the scanner and the kind of scans it can provide. It is not necessary that only a costly scanner can fulfill your need, or that a cheaper one would not. Primarily consider the work you expect from a scanner, and then your budget.
What are the software requirements for a scanner?
There is no special software required as the scanners work just like any other input device. However, some companies have special existing software they want the scanners to work with.
Are there different types of cordless scanners?
Yes, there are 2 different types of cordless scanners. One, which is not tethered to a system and rather has a storage unit in the handle itself! This storage system has to be updated to get it synced with the product inventory. The second one is the Bluetooth enabled scanner which is directly connected to the server or the system, storing and tweaking the information in the database instantaneously.
Should I choose a wireless scanner over wired scanners?
It entirely depends upon the need for mobility. If you need your employees to move around and scan products at different places and also ranges, then you must consider a cordless scanner. If your scanning process would not be remote and be restricted to only one place, it is best for you to choose the wired scanners. They are fast, easy to use and also available at cheap prices which would also help you save a few bucks.
Barcode exists in the retail world for a long time now. It helps you to add information about products, files, and folders. You can fasten the billing procedure, keep a count on the products, and also update the information whenever necessary. It includes all details like the pricing, name of the product, quantity or even images. This is being used in almost every industry like household, medicine, manufacturing, entertainment and more. So, the importance of barcode scanners is huge. It not only makes the transaction faster but also eases of the whole process without losing any accuracy.
Our top recommendation from the list would be TVSE BSC 101 Bar Code Scanner. This particular scanner uses a 32-bit processor for increased speed and accuracy. It also comes with a scan rate of 330 scans per second with a resolution of 2500 pixels. This is something that can give a tough competition to even higher segment and heavy duty scanners. Other than that, the price is affordable, the build quality is premium and offers a hand-free operation with USB support. Overall, a value for money proposition that can help you ease off your work load.
Also, there are other potent scanners in our list for the best barcode scanners in India right now. You can choose any with respect to your own business requirements and needs. You will find many connectivity options, unique designs and other factors.
Do let us know of your pick on the comment section below, we will be really excited to know of your choice! Best of luck!