Saltar al contenido

with the camera and from a photo

21 mayo, 2021

QR codes are very versatile, so they are becoming more and more popular. They serve both to add contacts and to connect to a Wi-Fi network or make payments, to name a few examples. To use them, you need a application to scan QR codes on your mobile. Best of all, you probably won’t need to install any additional applications.

There are two main ways to scan QR codes: using the mobile camera or scanning the code of an image that you have on your mobile. We will see how you can achieve this in both cases, without the need to install any additional application.

How to scan a QR code with the camera

If the QR code that you have to scan is not found on your mobile, but printed or in any other place that you can photograph (such as on the screen of a PC or another mobile), then the optimal mode of scanning it is using the mobile camera.

Google Lens in depth: everything you can do with the Google object recognition app

Nowadays it is more and more normal that the mobile camera application can scan QR codes, although if this is not the case, you will always have Google Lens. There are several ways to do it, although possibly the easiest is open Google Assistant, with a long touch on the home button, the physical button or the appropriate gesture. Then press the Google Lens button and point the camera at the QR code.


Google Lens will automatically recognize the QR code, although make sure it is in general search mode (the magnifying glass icon) in case it has trouble recognizing it. Tap on the code to see its content and carry out the recommended action (if it is a web link, open it; if it is a contact, add it to your agenda, etc.).

If for some reason you do not have the Google Assistant or Google Lens on your mobile, there are other modes and applications to scan QR codes that are very easy to use. The advantage of Google Lens is that it is a quick process and that you probably already have it pre-installed. This is a summary of the steps To scan a QR code with Google Lens on Android:

  • Open the Google Assistant with a long press on the home button.

  • Press the Google Lens button

  • Point the camera at the QR code

  • Tap on the QR code to view its content

How to scan the QR code of an image

The above steps help you to scan QR codes that you can photograph, but you can find yourself with QR codes that are on your mobile. For example, within a web page or within an application. You can also scan them, albeit with a slightly different process.

First of all, you will need the QR code is saved in an image on the mobile. Therefore, if you are trying to analyze one from a web page or application, you will need to take a screenshot before you can read it.

How to create a QR code

Afterwards, you can use Google Lens again to scan the QR code from the image. One way to do this is open Google Photos, find the image containing the QR code, open it and tap on the Google Lens icon. The application will detect the QR code and show you its content.


If you prefer, you can achieve the exact same thing from the Google Lens camera view, but by tapping on the photo icon, top left: the result is exactly the same. In short, this is the process for scan a QR code of a photo you already have on your mobile:

  • If you are on a website or application, first take a screenshot

  • Open Google Photos

  • Open the photo or screenshot

  • Tap on the Google Lens icon

  • You will see below the content of the QR code