Microscan, a global manufacturer and pioneer of auto ID solutions from the world’s first laser diode barcode scanner to the Data Matrix symbol, announces the invention of the world’s first-ever web-browser-based barcode reading interface, WebLink. Released alongside the company’s new MicroHAWK barcode reader platform, the WebLink interface offers the most intuitive configuration utility for barcode reader setup and control on the market.
WebLink allows users to command their barcode readers from any web-enabled device. To begin, an operator simply enters the IP address of a local MicroHAWK reader into the web browser of his or her choice to gain access to the reader’s settings, enable real-time adjustments, and monitor live decode results. WebLink connects to MicroHAWK readers over pervasive web protocols (HTTP), so there is no need for specialized knowledge of equipment or industrial protocols to set up a reader in an industrial setting. Users are able to control MicroHAWK using whatever equipment is most familiar to them.
The software and memory necessary for WebLink’s operation are hosted on the connected MicroHAWK barcode reader itself. There is no need to install software on external equipment to connect to MicroHAWK; users have instant access to the reader from any device connected to the same Local Area Network (LAN) and can switch between control devices as necessary. For this reason, making changes to reader settings does not require the availability of a particular device or operator, which eliminates downtime due to reader inaccessibility. Barcode reader job files can also be saved from the reader to external devices, allowing users to transfer predefined decode settings from one MicroHAWK reader to another. Factory operators and technicians therefore have no limits when it comes to choosing a control device or MicroHAWK reader for their application. There is no pre-configuration of equipment, no need to worry about upgrading equipment to new software versions in the future, no equipment compatibility obstacles, and no effort or specialized experience required to set up and control a MicroHAWK reader.
Through Microscan’s user-focused engineering, the intuitive WebLink UI has been uniquely developed to allow anyone with or without barcode reading experience to easily install a reader into new or existing systems in as few steps as possible. Using basic information about a barcode reading job, (barcode type, application type, number of symbols to decode, etc.), the WebLink interface offers an assisted setup function that automatically adjusts the settings of the connected MicroHAWK reader to train and optimize for the expected codes and reading conditions. Through a live feed of images from the MicroHAWK reader, users can see the effects of reader setting adjustments – such as the gain, exposure, area of interest, and more – in real time to check read performance under various conditions. WebLink seamlessly adjusts to single, multiple, static, moving, omnidirectional, printed, or direct-part-marked codes, and can even be trained to use the ideal combination of decode parameters for the target symbol to boost reading power, or optimized to limit processes run by the reader and increase decode speeds.
Microscan continues to redefine industrial barcode reading to expand the range of applications that can be met by any system and operator. MicroHAWK and WebLink set benchmarks for the accessibility of industrial devices. This platform brings the age of usability to the factory, the laboratory, and beyond, and furthers the global trend toward the open and connected industrial systems of the future.