Being a mobile app developer, I have to keep few devices around me all day for debugging and testing my apps. Nowadays, all smartphones come with Bluetooth, WiFi and now NFC technologies, but they all fail to talk to each other for even simple text data exchange.
I find myself in situations where I need to quickly get piece of text from one device to another. It could be a link, some text copied from browser, or SMS message I received on one device, and need to get on other device without messing around with apps or wires.
Yesterday this idea came to my mind when I was reading a lengthy article on my HTC Titan and received system notification that I need to recharge or else phone will power off. I wanted to quickly open the same article on my Nokia E7 which I was also carrying with me.
As I described earlier, that we currently don’t have any standard way to get these devices talk to each other directly without going through the “cloud”, so I was stuck there.
I quickly jumped back to my seat, and started some experiments. After an hour I did my first test and and it was a success!
Now you just need to point your other smartphone or tablet camera to it with a QR Code reader app of course (built-in in WP and other OS’s), and voila! The link will now open up.
It works in PC browsers as well, so if you need to quickly open a link on your tablet or smartphone from PC, you can save this in bookmarks toolbar in IE/Chrome/FF/Safari, and click it to instantly make a QR code for current link.
I tested it on all major PC browsers, and on my Nokia E7 and HTC Titan. Works great! It should run on all mobile browsers which support editing of bookmark URL, so you can insert the code there.
BTW, I used old Google Charts APIs to make the QR codes.
And finally here’s the code which you can copy and save as favorite in your mobile browser.
Step by step guide:
- Open web browser on mobile or PC
- Add / save this page as bookmark or favorite
- Now select and edit the saved bookmark
- In name field, type “! QRCoder”. The character in start makes sure the bookmark is always on top of the list in your bookmarks list. Easy to tap :)
- Ok / Done to save. Now go to any website and from bookmarks / favorites, tap on “! QRCoder”
To quickly land on this page, scan this QR code from your smartphone or tablet:
Tested on following devices / OS:
- PC / Mac / Linux – Check
- iPhone, iPad – Check
- Windows Phone 7.5 – Check
- Symbian Anna / Belle – Check
- Z10 / BB10 – Check
- ToDo: Android
I know when this gets published, many non-techy users are going ask how to save this code in mobile browser as favorite. So, here’s a little video demonstration on a Windows Phone:
[YouTube link for mobile viewing
Kindly ignore audio/video quality and any narration mistakes, this is my first ever video, done really quick :D
It’s a quick and dirty hack to solve a problem. You can also hack it further as per your liking.
I would love to hear any feedback or a tweet :)
// chall3ng3r //