Tuesday, March 31, 2009

NeuStar Announces Barcode Interoperability

NeuStar today unveiled the first successful demonstration and implementation of technology that enables cell phones to scan and process two-dimensional barcodes - regardless of the mobile service provider, type of bar code symbology, or scanning technology used.

NeuStar's pilot program is based on open standards and demonstrates interoperability among the world's most successful barcode campaign managers, symbologies, and code reader technologies through NeuStar's trusted third party central clearinghouse and registry services. Announced at CTIA, the program currently involves industry-leading companies 3GVision, Mobile Discovery, Mobile Tag, and NeoMedia.

"Each of our current partners brings unique values and capabilities to the market," according to Diane Strahan, vice president of Mobile Services at NeuStar. "Consumers can simply click, send, and enjoy immediate access to cool content. This program is a critical step toward linking various barcode readers and players in the marketplace, and toward creating a seamless, open, and scalable solution for brands, consumers, and mobile operators."

Unlike the linear (striped) EAN/UPC barcodes typically used for inventory and point-of-sale transactions, the more advanced two-dimensional (2D) codes provide mobile consumers with a "shortcut" to access rich content and helpful information, as well as to engage in m-commerce. For mobile consumers, barcodes offer the ability to rapidly discover, interact, and transact with brands without typing out a web address or searching for a website.

NeuStar anticipates that two-dimensional bar codes will be of particular relevance to advertisers and brands, which can immediately leverage their traditional packaging and print - as well as interactive media buys - to reach consumers on the move. More than simply providing mobile consumers with a link to an Internet address, indirect 2D barcode systems can use location, language, or other information shared by the consumer, allowing advertisers to deliver dynamic, individually tailored content. Barcodes offer direct response accountability through measurable ROI, and enable advertisers to adjust their content based on real-time tracking of each campaign's performance.

"Whether the call to action is a short code or a barcode, NeuStar is enabling consumers to opt in to and connect directly with their desired mobile content and interactive experiences," continued Strahan. "The current industry partners in this program are highly successful players in mobile marketing and bar code scanning solutions, as well as intellectual property leaders. These partners have the widest deployment of barcode solutions and penetration in Japan, France, Australia, and other countries. The strength of the open interoperable service we are demonstrating is that it provides the underlying infrastructure needed for brands to confidently deliver a consistent, high-quality customer experience across mobile operators for maximum reach and return."

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