Almost omnipresent QR codes used to share information with smartphone users might be outdated soon by fancier image-scanning technology. British company Aurasma has launched a new initiative for triggers for virtual content and has offered itself for free and racked up 2 million downloads.

Blippar, another image based company has done ad campaigns for Cadbury, Jack Daniels, and Tesco. Their main wag is using codes that are more aesthetically pleasing.

“We don’t want to be pigeonholed as a QR code killer,” says Jessica Butcher, Blippar’s marketing manager. “We really want to show that image recognition can do a lot more than that.”

Pepsi recently had a campaign where fans could snap photos of the X Factor logo on soda bottles for content and prizes. The promotion, powered by Pongr, doesn’t require an app but instead scans and filters the photos that users simply send to them.

“We particularly like the Pongr technology because it allows millions more of our consumers to engage via our products than if we were restricted to QR codes and QR readers,” says Shiv Singh, PepsiCo Beverages global head of digital.

Lauren Offers, Aurasma’s director of marketing, notes that despite these new changes, it was QR codes that have “gotten people comfortable with the idea of taking your phone and pointing it at some kind of image.”

Source: AdWeek