Pinellas County Goes Mobile With QR Codes

If you live in Pinellas County, you may have noticed a barcode on your utility bill that wasn't there before. While this barcode may look like a block of lines that hold no importance to you, pull out an IPhone or Android, scan it and see what comes up.

Pinellas County recently implemented the use of QR codes, a barcode that can be scanned with smartphones, which will automatically direct you to a website providing more information. Tom Iovino, public information specialist for Pinellas County, explains how the technology works.

"A QR code is a two-dimensional barcode," Iovino says. "While a traditional barcode that you find on the back of a can of soda contains numbers, a QR code is scanned up, down and across holding more information."

Iovino says the purpose of the QR codes is to eliminate the need to manually enter web addresses or URLs.

While the technology has only been implemented in utility bills and printed materials at budget meetings, the county expects to apply the QR codes in more places.

"Some of the technology is not completed yet, however we envision that in the future, a visitor at Heritage Village could go up to a building, scan a tag and a video will come up with more information on that particular building," Iovino says. "In the future we hope that our neighboring counties, transportation units such as HART and PSTA as well as the Department of Health will use the technology. It helps the public get information, which is important."

Iovino says that the QR barcode scanner application can be downloaded on most smartphones.

"There are several mobile applications that you can download for free, which will give you the ability to scan QR codes," he says. "That is the beauty of this technology, it is free to download and scan, all you need is a smartphone."

Writer: Kimberly Patterson
Source: Tom Iovino, Pinellas County Communications


Read more articles by Kimberly Patterson.

Kimberly Patterson is a news editor for 83 Degrees Media in the Tampa Bay region of Florida.
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