CODING INDUSTRY IN CHENNAI
| C Albert Vinod Samuel,
Regional Manager, Automatic Data Capture Division, Datamatics
Information Technology, speaks to www.chennaibest.com on
the Bar Coding industry in the city today.
Could you tell us something about the technology
of bar coding? How does it work?
is a facilitating technology and not a controlling technology. Bar
coding is based on Auto Data Capturing technology. The technology
is based on reflective optics. The black and white lines absorb and
reflect light rays, enabling the identification of a product. To utilize
this technology, two pieces of equipment are needed - the Bar Code
scanner and the printer.
When and where was bar coding first used in the country?
It started off in the really big libraries like I.I.T. (Indian
Institute of Technology), in the beginning of the 90's. Then came
the Departmental Stores like Food World, Nilgiris. Next in
line were the manufacturing industries - auto ancillaries. Yeah! These
were the early starters. Today, the hottest area for the bar coding
industry is logistics. The industry is fifteen years old.
How effective is bar coding as a technology
for packaging here?
Packaging in India is different from that in the West. Bar coding
finds better applications there. Retail selling is standardised abroad,
unlike India. It is much easier to find ample applications for bar
How effective is bar coding in checking pilferage,
pirating of products and imitation of products?
Bar code establishes the identity of a product. It cannot in any way
prevent piracy or imitation. It is for the manufacturer to take care
of this. Yes! Indirectly there is pilferage. Anyone who masters the
technology can do duplication easily. It is only the manufacturer
who has to be vigilant.
Any other uses of the bar coding technique in
Apart from its extensive use in the retail market, it is effectively
used in libraries and it is now emerging as an effective solution
for crowd management. It drastically lessens data entry work.
What is the level of awareness about the bar coding technique in Chennai?
Are there any laws for its implementation? If
so, who is officially responsible for its working?
The EAN (European Article Number) based in Delhi. EAN is responsible
for allotting an identity to a product. Each product is assigned a
number that becomes its identity. This is converted into a Bar code.
Recently the government came out with a law for making bar coding
mandatory for exporters. Right now we do not have any officials in
Chennai for that.
If a storeowner wanted to install a bar coding
system in his store, how much would it cost him approximately?
The Bar code printer would cost Rs 1 lakh per unit and the barcode
scanner ranges from Rs 15,000/- to Rs 50,000/-. The running costs
would come to 15 paise per label.
How is the Chennai bar coding industry as compared
to other metros?
On par with the other metros. We do have some big players here. Chennai
is an important destination for this technology.
Bajaj, at an all India Level. In Chennai, our major clients
are Life Style, TVS, Hindustan Motors, Ford and Birla Group..
Major players at the international level are Symbol Intermac,
PSC (for bar code scanners) and Zebra, Intermac and Datamax
(for bar code printers). In Chennai we have Intellicon and
Bar code India as major players.
What kind of growth do you foresee for the
bar coding market in Chennai?
Not much in the next two years. IT needed for the industry, will need
some more time to fructify. Also, the cycle period to have business
decisions in this technology is very high. It is never less than a
Author : Poornima S