Monday, 9 November 2009

New Version of RedLaser uses only published iPhone APIs

After I put out a request for technologies that could use the iPhone's camera to scan barcodes without having to call unpublished API methods, I have been contacted by Jeffrey Powers, co-founder of Occipital, the company behind the RedLaser technology.

Jeffrey has informed me that there is a just-released version of RedLaser that only uses published iPhone API calls:
"I thought you would like to know that RedLaser, as an algorithm, has nothing to do with unpublished APIs, but that video processing in general is currently impossible without unpublished API use. We have some confidence that Apple will course-correct on this issue with their next OS update.

In the meantime, we do have a version of RedLaser that avoids this problem which became publicly available as of yesterday. It uses what we call "Photo-Burst" instead of the unpublished API, which means it takes a couple of snapshots very rapidly and then processes those momentarily. At the core it still uses RedLaser's state of the art barcode recognition, and it still works on all iPhone models. ("
Thanks for the update and the new version, Jeffrey. I am happy to point people excited by your innovative use of the phone's camera to scan barcodes, that they can use a version that Apple are not likely to reject.

So, we're back on track with Tesco Finder's technology upgrade then!


  1. Hi Nick,
    The barcode reader that powers the free pic2shop app is also available for licensing.
    It offers an API that leaves you complete control over the image capture interface. You can use any image capturing mode that Apple will allow.
    More information at:


As this blog grows in readership - and because it carries the Tesco brand - I have had to become more careful about the sort of comments that are acceptable. The good news is that I'm a champion of free speech so please be as praising or as critical as you wish! The only comments I DON'T allow through are:

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