They may look like nothing more than black and white squares, but QR codes are quickly revolutionising the way we do almost everything! A QR code (short for Quick Response code) is a machine-readable code that consists of black and white squares that can be read in the same way as a barcode. They are typically used to store information or images and can be read by both cameras and smartphones.  This is a process that happens in seconds, meaning that in a newly touch-free world, QR codes are suddenly everywhere. There has been a 94% increase in QR code usage since 2018. But what can QR codes be used for? And how can QR codes be used to access multiple photos in a photo album? Here's everything you need to know:

What Can QR Codes Be Used For? 

The uses available for QR codes are near-endless. Because many smartphones have built-in QR code readers, QR codes are increasingly being used in a wide range of social situations. In a post-Covid-19 world where both tracing and minimising Covid-19 contact is vital, QR codes have been used for location tracking and for reducing the use of multi use items; you can scan a QR code to access a menu in a restaurant, for example. They are also regularly used in marketing and advertising campaigns because potential customers can quickly scan a QR code to access additional information. This can also lead to a reduction in advertising costs, with QR code usage reducing the need to print leaflets and flyers. In all these cases, the QR code will be used to direct to a website URL. 

Other uses for QR codes include, but are not limited to: 

- In retail, so that consumers can access more information about a product. 

- In the travel industry, to share information and simplify processes such as hotel check-in. 

- In the transportation industry, to provide real-time information to passengers e.g. the whereabouts of the bus, the next tram time, etc. 

- In property on 'For Sale' signs.

- To encourage email newsletter sign-ups for your business. 

QR codes can also be used in a non-business context, e.g. at special occasions for sharing wedding photos with guests or between social groups. But what if you want to share more than one image? Can you make a QR code for a photo album? The simple answer is yes. 

Using QR Codes for Photo Albums 

Because a QR code typically directs a user to a specific URL, if you want to share a QR code photo album then you would need to either create a folder in Google Drive or create an album in Photos and then generate a QR code for the link to either of these locations. You can then set up open access permissions so that anyone with access permissions can add their own photos to these albums. Whilst this makes sharing photo albums via QR codes possible, it is also quite a time-consuming and labour-intensive process. 

If you’re time-poor or want to create a shared access photo album via QR code for a special occasion, a much easier way of doing this would be to use a company like EventsAlbum. This is an online album generation website where anyone invited to do so can easily share their photos with you e.g., wedding guests can easily upload photos. You set up the album group, create a QR code and link to your album from their site. The whole process is quick and easy, and doesn't require you to download a photography sharing app (or do anything else time-consuming) to make it work! 

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