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How to scan QR codes on iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

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With contactless interactions more common than ever, there is more of a need to read a QR code than ever. Here's how to read QR codes using your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

A QR code is a type of two-dimensional barcode that can be read by devices with a camera or specialized barcode reader. QR codes are often used to launch websites or trigger specific actions within an app. Some QR codes even allow users to pay for goods, such as gasoline, as an alternative form of touchless payment.

You can use your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to read QR codes. In fact, your camera app already does this.

How to scan QR codes on an iPhone

  1. Open the Camera app
  2. Point your camera at a QR code
  3. Tap the popup that appears

That's it — seriously! The iPhone Camera app automatically detects QR codes and pops up a tooltip to allow you to launch the code whenever you'd like.

You can try it out on this QR code, which launches AppleInsider — just point your phone's camera at the screen.

You can also add a dedicated QR code scanner to your Control Center. The dedicated scanner is helpful for scanning QR codes in dark environments, as it enables you to use your camera's flash as a light to illuminate the code.

How to add a QR code scanner to Control Center

How to add a QR code scanner to Control Center

  1. Open Settings
  2. Tap Control Center
  3. Scroll down and tap on QR Code Reader

Now when you open your Control Center, there will be a small button that looks like a QR code. Tap that button whenever you'd like to scan a QR code, and it will automatically launch the action encoded within the QR code.