The barcode scanner arrived in a color printed box with components wrapped in bubble wrap to protect them during shipping. Unpacking was quite quick and easy as no tape was used. Everything arrived in perfect shape. Contrary to the USB version I reviewed a while back, this model
The barcode scanner arrived in a color printed box with components wrapped in bubble wrap to protect them during shipping. Unpacking was quite quick and easy as no tape was used. Everything arrived in perfect shape. Contrary to the USB version I reviewed a while back, this model did not require any assembly as a stand is not included. The package included the wireless laser barcode scanner, a USB cable, a user manual and a handy credit card size cheat sheet with a few useful control barcodes. The 3.7V 750mAh Li-ion rechargeable battery was already installed inside the scanner’s handle. This barcode scanner, like many others, is recognized as a keyboard by the computer therefore it does not require any special software. This barcode scanner can be used with any device that accepts a keyboard input via Bluetooth 3.0 so I chose to test it with my phone, a Samsung Galaxy S7. I set my phone to search for Bluetooth devices and noticed a “Pair code” barcode on the handy credit card cheat sheet. As soon as I scanned it, my phone picked up the barcode scanner and installed it successfully. Moments later I was searching for UPCs on Google on my phone… it was that fast and easy! I did not even peak at the user manual yet. In case you wonder, if you try this on a computer that already has a keyboard… do not worry, the computer can handle multiple keyboard type inputs so pairing this scanner with your computer will not cause any issues. The great thing of it working this way is that it makes it virtually compatible with anything that can accept input from a keyboard. If your computer does not have Bluetooth, you will either have to buy a Bluetooth adapter or use this scanner with the included USB cable. I would definitely buy the adapter as it is much more convenient to use wireless. Either way you will have to recharge the battery using the USB cable (1.5hrs per the manual) after about 30 hours of use according to the user manual. In the event you need to scan multiple items out of range, you can set the scanner to inventory mode which will allow you to store a large number of scans without communicating with the host as they will be stored in its internal memory. Using this feature will require scanning special barcodes in the user manual and on the credit card size cheat sheet. Range – this is often a topic of controversy as the actual range one will achieve can vary significantly. This is not the fault of the product but rather due to the nature of RF and the environment the scanner is operated in. The manual states the range is 7 to 10m / 23 to 33 feet indoors and four times better outdoors but this is typically measured in the most optimal setting – absolutely no interference (read wifi, zigbee, phones, etc) and direct line of sight. If you are having range issues and there are metal objects between you and the receiver, then try to move them out of the way. Given this scanner is Bluetooth, it operates in the 2.4GHz ISM band which is shared by many other devices, including Wifi, that can cause interference. However, I have lots of wifi and zigbee devices that all use 2.4GHz and did not seem to have any interference issues. Some scanners come with a stand as they are meant to be always on so that you can put barcoded objects under the scanner instead of handling the scanner to scan the barcode. Think of the grocery store where they just pass the product in front of the scanner. This scanner does not come with one but I believe it was mostly designed for wireless use (to move around) which would not require a stand. Although the construction looks solid, I wish they had used softer rubber for some of the parts where it comes into contact with the working surface when you lay it down. Some much more expensive models have this but you are also paying way more for the scanner. For medium to light use, I believe this will not be an issue at all. For high volume warehouse use, this may not be the best choice. One common setting you might want to turn on or off is the automatic carriage return (aka pressing ENTER) as this may trigger an undesired action in the software you are scanning barcodes. For example, if you are scanning multiple serial numbers in an invoice, you may not want it to go to the next line. The user manual has a large number of settings to customize prefixes, suffixes, and what barcodes are accepted. I tried this scanner with a variety of barcode types, and sizes so see how it worked. I was unable to find a barcode it could not read amongst the ones it supported. One quirk that may annoy some is that when the scanner powers down about 30 seconds after the last use (remember it is battery operated) it will require you press the trigger to turn it on. No laser will be emitted but loud beeps will indicate it is now on and connected. The power off timer can be extended or even turned off. If you turn it off you will likely want to use this scanner connected to power. Overall this is a very nice product for a very reasonable price – If I recall this is several times cheaper than some heavier duty Zebra/Motorola models I’ve seen. Whether you buy this very affordable model or the very expensive alternatives depends on your planned usage. For medium to light usages I believe this is a great choice.