My iPhone 6 works fine for common QR codes, but won't scan certain 2D codes (mac parts QR codes, for example). Are these codes different?

  • 1
    Do you have a photo example of a 2D code that doesn't work?
    – drivec
    Apr 18, 2018 at 22:17

1 Answer 1


Not all 2D codes that look like QR codes are QR codes.

QR codes have a distinctive square position pattern in one or more of the corners of the code, like this one for Wikipedia.

enter image description here

Based on this iPhone X teardown, it looks like Apple uses Data Matrix for 2D codes on their parts.

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The iPhone camera can only scan QR codes, and not other 2D or 1D codes like UPC, Code 39, PDF417, Data Matrix, MaxiCode, etc. There are apps on the App Store that can read these codes.

  • You smashed it!, this seems to work, I could even scan those 2D codes on the picture above. Thank you Apr 19, 2018 at 5:31

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