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Displaying articles for: 07-03-2011 - 07-09-2011

Is Laser Dead? Part 2

by Intermec on ‎July 5 2011 03:10 PM



In this second installment of our scanning series, Cedric Mollon takes a look at Laser vs. 2D Imaging capabilities...and what's taken over as the newest emerging technology in the field.


What Can 2D Readers Do That Lasers Can’t? 

In a world where a majority of new industry standards adopt 2D symbologies, laser is a technology of the past.

  • 2D Imagers can read 1D & 2D barcodes while lasers can only read 1D.
  • 2D Imagers can read barcodes in any direction, while you need to align a laser to the barcode to scan it. As a consequence, 2D imagers are more comfortable to use and increase productivity at work
  • 2D imagers add value beyond barcodes by being able to capture images, videos and objects. They are the preferred choice to differentiate your products vs. competitors and they offer investment protection as you can upgrade your applications in the future. As previously mentioned, lasers only read 1D barcodes.
  • 2D Imagers allow for data capture in a smaller format – they increase your company’s access to information faster, and make manual entry a process of the past.  Laser can only read bigger barcodes (1D) with limited data.


What has taken over as the new emerging technology?

2D barcodes, and consequently 2D Imagers (as they are the only scanning technology to read 2D matrix codes), have taken over as the new emerging technology – 2D barcodes are an evolution within the industry as they are the most cost and time efficient way to track data rapidly without changing your company’s complete supply chain process.


Whether you need to print 1D or 2D barcodes, the process remains the same: printing black and white elements onto a label. The reading technology, 2D imaging, is now very common and costs have come down dramatically.


Also, there are limited investments needed to convert to 2D symbologies, combined with a fast ROI and strong investment protection, 2D imaging is the fastest growing technology within the AIDC market. CAGR is 18.1 percent for the 2010 – 2015 period based on handheld scanner shipments (source: VDC 2011).


Stay tuned for Part 3 of our "Is Laser Dead" series where we discuss what benefits and ROI an organization should expect from making a switch from Laser to 2D imaging.  Coming soon!  

About the Author
  • As Director of Mobile Printers, I currently lead Intermec’s mobile printer strategy. Previously, I led Intermec’s mobile computing, RFID and Data Capture product strategy and marketing teams and have also worked with Intermec’s Industry Marketing efforts for enterprise asset management and field service application solutions.
  • Intermec, now part of Honeywell Scanning & Mobility, is focused on supply chain workflow performance. We design the leading data capture and information management solutions at the interface between mobile workers, assets, and customers. For more information about Intermec, visit
  • My passion? helping businesses solve technology problems. I'm currently the Honeywell Smart Printing evangelist , firmware strategist and manager of desktop printers. A big part of my job is to recruit new Smart Printing partners, either as developers or resellers who partner with developers to deliver Smart Printing applications. I worked as an Intermec Systems Engineer for nine months in 2008 as my first position at this company. Prior to Intermec I was a professional software developer, trainer, sales rep and finally director of software teams for a number of small software publishers.
  • Mike Hansen works in the Technology Office as Staff Engineer based in Everett, Wash. He is responsible for the wireless WPAN, WLAN, and WWAN technology direction for Intermec product portfolios. As part of his role, Mike collaborates with Engineering, Marketing, and Technical Partners to establish the technical direction and system engineering leadership in wireless capabilities for Intermec products.
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