A quick tip for owners of Huawei and Honor phones who are wondering, as I did for a while, how to read QR codes. It’s actually incredibly easy, but only if you know how. Here’s the “secret” way to activate the QR reader on Huawei and Honor phones.
First, head to the home screen and then swipe down from the middle of the screen. This will reveal a screen like so:
This is the search page, from which you can quickly trawl through your phone’s apps and contacts.
You need to press the odd squiggle to the right of the search box, which will activate your camera – but with a difference.
Instead of allowing you to take a photo, it’s there to scan. On this occasion, the button we’re interested in is on the left: the QR Code reader. Here, I’ve cropped the screen just to display the four choices.
Press the QR code symbol at the far left and then point your phone at a code, as shown below.
Press Allow and you’ll be transported to the relevant page.
Beyond QR codes
Your phone may also offer additional options, as shown in the image below. Translate, second from left, is self-explanatory. Unlike the dedicated app, Google Translate, it only supports a limited number of languages, but it will show them live on-screen.
The Shopping widget automatically recognises what it sees and directs you to an online store – and it works pretty well. Here, it took me straight from a printed image in a magazine to a website where I could buy the selected product.
And finally, on phones such as the Huawei Mate 20 Pro and Honor View20, there’s Identify. The idea is that it recognises objects, points you to further resources and, in the case of food, goes one step further still.
Incredibly, Huawei claims that it can use the depth sensor in those phones to work out how big an item or portion is, and then calculate the number of calories.
It works to an extent, but no serious calorie counter should trust it.
For example, it thought my test banana was 140g when actually it was 90g, so heavily overestimated its calorific value. I also found its recognition ability to be dubious, variously identifying an apple as a mandarin, kumquat and peach – it only decided it was an apple about a third of the time.