Barcode scanners or barcode readers are electronic devices designed for reading barcodes. Similar to a flatbed scanner, it has a lens, light sensor and a light source that translates optical impulses to electrical ones. Almost all barcode scanners have a decoder circuitry which analyzes the image data of the barcode and sends it to the output port of the scanner. It is the sensor who makes this process possible.
Wireless Barcode Scanners
Wireless barcode scanners are designed to enable the user scan barcodes even if he or she is walking farther away from the PC. In other words, it is very conveniently mobile. In other cases, you can rid yourself of the PC and still be able to read and write the information onto a database in the network. This means, the barcode scanner has a network connection, where in, the software navigates toward the data source in order to update data.
Before buying a wireless barcode scanner, assess your workplace situation and analyze if you just need a longer cord or you really need a portable data collector equipped with a mobile handheld computer and integrated barcode scanner. If you only need a longer cord, you can go for the wireless wedge scanner. You will be able to save more with this type since they are less expensive as compared to their technologically advanced brethren.
Wireless Wedge Scanners
Wireless wedge scanners are actually similar to corded scanners. They have two components, the base station and the scanner. It is the scanner that communicates with the base station, after which, the base station sends the “decoded” barcode data into its computer network.
The connectivity of the base stations to the computer is also similar to the connection process of wired scanners. They use the RS232, USB or PS2 connection. When using the USB ad PS2 connections, data is transferred to the PCs keyboard buffer. It will appear as ASCII text, appearing on the screen of the PC anywhere the cursor flashes. If you are using the RS232 interface, the scanned input is taken but it is not displayed at the flashing cursor. The data is just taken and place where it is programmed to go.
Wireless wedge scanners have 2 varieties. They only differ from the way the scanner talks to its base station. Oftentimes, they use a so-called “frequency hopping algorithm” that makes use of the 14 available channels with a 2.4ghz spectrum designed for wireless communication.
There are also cases, where they utilize the Bluetooth protocol. Although they are both similar in performance and range, the Bluetooth protocol enables you to connect your scanner onto any Bluetooth-enabled receiver, sending the ASCII text there. With this method, it is very easy to connect to any Bluetooth-enabled device and just by-pass your base station.
When purchasing a wireless wedge scanner with the Bluetooth protocol, make sure its scanner has a driver that enables communication of the host device. In fact, there are scanners that even work with PocketPC devices.
Here are the top wireless barcode scanners in the market:
Metrologic MS9535 VoyagerBT
This wireless barcode scanner provides the convenience of mobility because of its Bluetooth v1.1 wireless technology. It is the Voyager Series’ latest member, continuing the saga of combining high performance, patented technology and futuristic designs. It can be wall- or countertop-mounted.
Metrologic MS9535 VoyagerBT is a cable-free bluetooth module scanning device that has the CodeGate data transmission technology. It supports both client and master modes as well as it can process 12,000 scans per charge. It also has a 10-meter working range and it can decode RSS Expanded, RSS Limited and RSS-14 bar codes.
This wireless barcode scanner provides excellent barcode scanning capabilities, especially with its Bluetooth 2v1.2 wireless technology. Aside from being cost-effective and safe to use, users are given the convenience to move up to 50 feet while scanning items. You are also guaranteed with secure and reliable wireless data transmissions because of its integrated Bluetooth WPAN or Wireless Personal Area Networking protocol.
Datalogic Gryphon BT100 & BT200 Barcode Scanners
These two wireless barcode scanners are as new addition to the Gryphon mobile family. They are both engineered with the latest innovation of Bluetooth technology. They have the Datalogic Bluetooth radio module, which complies with the Bluetooth 1.1 standards and easily communicates with any device that has an external commercial Bluetooth dongle or Bluetooth module such as laptops, PCs, PDAs, printers, mobile phones and the like.
Datalogic Gryphon BT100 & BT200 Barcode Scanners are capable of decoding 270 scans per second. They are also user-friendly and intuitive. Furthermore, GryphonBT designed it with a “blue spot” feature, ensuring good reading feedbacks and making the user’s job very easy amidst noisy environments.