Hey, it looks like there’s life in the ol’ QR code yet! In Australia, at least.
The nation’s postal service has become the first to launch what it’s calling a Video Stamp, allowing anyone sending a package or letter to include a short video message by way of a QR code stuck on the front.
The service is free and, of course, can be used for international mail, too. It’s currently available via its Express Post and Express Courier International products.
All you do is purchase a video stamp – which costs the same as regular postage –scan it, post the package or letter, and then record your personal message within 12 hours of sending.
When the mail arrives at its destination, the recipient simply has to scan the QR code and (hopefully) enjoy the message. If they don’t have a mobile device with a camera to scan the code, they can enter a unique number code on Australia Post’s website instead – so hopefully they will have an Internet-connected computer.
The video message stays live for 90 days after recording, though it can also be downloaded.
Now, if you’re thinking that any Tom, Dick or Harriet will be able to view the message as it makes its way through various postal systems, you’d be absolutely right. Australia Post has this to say on the matter:
“Video Stamps are intended to only be seen by the recipient of your mail but we can’t guarantee someone won’t see it on the way. If you wouldn’t put it on a postcard, don’t put it in a Video Stamp.”
For now, Australia’s postal service has created several million of the special stamps, which it hopes to sell in the run up to Christmas. If the response is positive, it’ll continue offering its Video Stamps into next year and beyond.