Scanning barcodes and QR Codes on Android with a broken back camera

So for reasons I won’t get into, I have a faulty main camera on my Samsung Galaxy S III.

It turns out Snapchat still allows me to take pictures and save them without crashing, due to it having front camera on by default. But I found myself needing a barcode scanner or QR Code scanner for 2-Factor authentication.


Most barcode scanner apps, which automatically boot into scanning mode will just crash straight away. I spent quite a while trying poorly written bar code scanners (even the one Google Authenticator suggests) which just crash if the back camera is broken.

Eventually I found a solution. QuickMark Barcode Scanner doesn’t crash right away and allows you to switch to your front camera. It has a pretty decent UI, and they also have a pretty good Windows app for scanning barcodes on your screen. Good job on the developers for handling erroneous situations gracefully.

3 thoughts on “Scanning barcodes and QR Codes on Android with a broken back camera

  1. Orlando Gotay

    I wish Whatsapp would listen. Because of a defective rear camera on my phone, I cannot read the Whatsapp web client’s QR code.

    I write Whatsapp support and they reply like they’ve never heard of this ever happening to anyone.


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