QR Code on a Business Card but how?

George Bush Business Card with QR Code

(Added: January 18th, 2010 QR Coded LinkedIn profile with tracking on your business card).

(Added: January 13th, 2010 Since I wrote this post Viscards seems to have ceased operation).

(Added: May 3rd, 2009 I am now using my new and very different Web 2.0 business card to great effect).

How many different ways can you think of to get a working QR Code on your business card?

Here are two to start the ball rolling and when you think of others please add them in a comment.

First, the way that MT Digital’s Viscards would have you do it.

1. Sign up at viscards.com
2. Enter your contact information
3. Download your QR Code which points to http://www.viscards.com/your-user-name, the location of your vCard .vcf file.
4. Print the QR Code on your business card

Quite straight forward and once you have signed up you can go back and change the contact information (if you change jobs for example) and still use the same QR Code.

A second method using a drop.

1. Create your vCard .vcf file in Outlook or one of the many online generators like vCardMaker
2. Creat a new drop at drop.io and upload the .vcf file like this for example http://drop.io/hgjyqfr
3. Create a QR code somewhere like here for your drop.io url.
4. Print the QR Code on your business card

If you change jobs then you just create and upload a new .vcf file

Here is an example of one I produced on drop.io and one on Viscards both for The President.

24 thoughts on “QR Code on a Business Card but how?”

  1. Some QR Code business cards in Japan have 3 qr codes on them, one for personal contact details which format & intergrate with outlook. The others are for down loading product catalougues and company or brand partners or the same product data but in English
    QR business cards are also stored as an image on the phone so at meetings people scan each others QR image off the screen.

  2. Hi Martin
    I think it would be OK to write the whole VCF into a QR code, I keep several QR codes as images on my phone which can be scanned or e-mailed. Each QR code is in a different languages (English, Japanese, Korean) and depending who I am meeting with and what I want them to know, thats the QR code I provide.

  3. Say, I just saw this message. Might I suggest you use the “MECARD” format from DoCoMo. While VCF is a quite standard format, it’s a bit verbose. MECARD is a more compact standard in Japan for this type of info.

    See http://www.nttdocomo.co.jp/english/service/imode/make/content/barcode/function/application/addressbook/index.html ; also we have put together a wiki trying to summarize some de facto standards out there: http://code.google.com/p/zxing/wiki/BarcodeContents

    We use MECARD at Google to encode contact info on our business cards as QR Codes.

  4. I would like to share my vcard only with the people I give a business card so putting a QRcode link to my online vcard seems stupid (same as sharing it with the world) so I was thinking to encode the full vcard in a QRcode. This makes the code larger and harder to scan so… does anyone know if QRcode scanners can read vcards or do they all expect links?

  5. i think some of the Q&A here misses the point that a vcard hcard or M(E?)Card can all be encoded in a 2d code but** They all entail coding too much data to keep the resulting image to a reasonable size.

    When they have to much data the image becomes too hard for a mobile phone reader to read.

    URL shortening and/or linking to a v/h/m/card on line is a solution.

    You can then change the information without reprinting the card.

    unfortunately the standards are still a mess and no winners are obvious.

    All the Best Dave – @ http://geohash.org/gc0vg2x6uw5t

  6. I have a blackberry storm and I tried to download the beetagg reader so I can scan a QR code and it does not seem to work with my blackberry.
    Can anyone tell me which reader is the best for qr codes and blackberry?
    Thank you!

  7. I just started exploring QR with BeeTagg. I created a “contact card” meaning I filled in the necessary info, uploaded my photo and company logo and created or generated the BeeTagg code. It works great, but I can’t save the info to my phone. I have a BB Pearl. Anyone have any answers?


  8. It sounds like Blackberry is unable to take a vcard code or URL pointing to a vcard and add it to the Blackberry address book. Has anyone found a way to do this? thanks!

  9. I recommend the business card QR code generator at http://coderqr.com. It allows you to add multiple email addresses, phone numbers, and so on. After all, who has only one email or phone number?

  10. I use qr droid on my android phone(free). It decodes qr codes fine, vcard or otherwise(occasionally it will give a warning about a generated code being larger than recommended, but it decodes them fine.), as well as different colors, & it will even decode an image stored on your phone or from a url. It can also create qr codes right from the app. It also has url shortening built in.

  11. I think it’s better to link the QR code to a page where the information is located rather than encode your vCard directly into the cards. We use qrky codes on ours (www.qrky.co.uk).

    It’s a mini mobile page linked via a QR code with a vCard download on it, our twitter and linkedin stream and a list of our colleagues information.

    Because it’s all online, tracking is also pretty cool.

  12. Hi everybody,
    the article is very interesting!

    We are developping a start up which provide many codes at the same time for your businesscards (Codes pointing at a URL with a Vcard). The start-up aims to target big firms.

    We provide also many services (in addition of the code) : access 24-24 hour, unlimited updating, statistic repporting, privacy and secured hosting of data.

    You can check out our temporary website : http://myqbc.fr/ or our video : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90k5pYEQPwY


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