Barcodes are read by barcode readers or barcode scanners. Many different technologies are being used for scanning barcodes. The scanners are also designed in such a way that it can be housed or applied easily by the users. Different housing types of scanners are available. These are mentioned hereunder.
- Handheld scanners
Fixed position scanners
These are the most commonly used scanners. These can be considered as an average point-and-shoot gun style scanners. Usually laser type scanners are used for such handheld scanners. However, LED and CCD types within these handheld types are also becoming popular. There will be a trigger with a laser version. This operates for turning the light source on and off. The handheld scanners have the ability to store data that can be used for later transfer. The handheld scanners can be used while checking an inventory or an item that is too large and that which cannot be transferred to a stationary or fixed scanner. The handheld barcode scanners can also be used at situations where a group of items have to be scanned.
As the name suggests, the pen-type barcode scanners are in the shape of a pen. These can be handled easily. All you need to do is to draw or swipe the tip of the scanner across the bars of the barcode label from one end to the other. These scanners are less-expensive, small and are convenient for repetitive data entry. However, these are not that reliable because sometimes more than one trial should be done in order to get an accurate reading.
These scanners by their name are secured at one place. The barcode labels are passed through these scanners. One of the most common examples for such type are the checkout stands of supermarkets. Point to be noted here is that the scanner does not move. It is only the item or the product containing the barcode moves on the scanner.
Fixed Position Scanners:
Fixed position scanners are attached to a terminal or location. They transmit data about one at a time. Retail markets and supermarkets mostly use these type of scanners. These scanners are however different from the stationary ones. The stationary scanners cannot move. But when a fixed position scanner is placed on a conveyer track or in a factory automation, by attaching to a robotic frame or arm it moves in an organized pattern.
All the housing types of scanners are included in Symbol barcode scanners, HP Laser barcode scanners, Hewlett scanners and many others.