Difference between DataMatrix and QR Code

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Today, 2D barcodes are an emerging technology that are utilised in a variety of enterprises, industries, and sectors to streamline the production and maintenance process. QR codes and Data Matrix codes both can store a website URL which you can scan and open in the web browser. These codes can apply on the product to be scanned at every level of production and distribution process. They are widely used across several sectors and businesses.

Benefits provided by QR Code and DataMatrix:
  • 2D barcode technology has a corrector attached, so even if the code is broken, it can still be read, increasing its durability over time.
  • Because they can be read from any angle, QR Code and DataMatrix codes are quite helpful.
  • The representation of QR code and Data Matrix indicates that the information is kept both horizontally and vertically in the square pattern that uses pixels. As a result, this kind of technology may be quite informational.

Data Matrix Code:

Black and white blocks are organised in a neat square pattern to create DataMatrix codes. Data matrix symbols are helpful because they can encode a lot of information in a little amount of space. These codes include a pattern that can hold up to 3116 numeric or 2335 alphabetic characters, which might contain a manufacturer ID, a unique serial number, and many other things. The number of rows and columns (modules) or shape increases when more data is added.

QR Code:

The look of both QR and Data Matrix code is one of their numerous similarities. QR code can be read easily by a 2D barcode reader or mobile phone scanner and it stores information as a series of pixels in a square-shaped grid with compatibility for Kanji/Kana characters; you can store 7,089 numeric or 4,296 alphanumeric characters.

Difference between Data Matrix and QR Code:
Code Type: Data Matrix QR Code
Representation Data Matrix QR Code
Maximum Capacity

Only numbers are allowed: 3,116

2,335 alphanumeric characters

1,556 bytes in binary

Not supported: Kanji/Kana characters

Numeric characters only: 7,089

Alphanumeric characters: 4,296

Binary characters: 2,953

Kanji/kana characters: 1,817


Min 10×10 cells

Max 144×144 cells

Min 21×21 cells

Max 177×177 cells

Error Correction Level

Algorithm of Reed-Solomon Error Correction

A 25–33% error correction efficiency

There is no level adjustment

Low: 7%

Medium: 15%

Quartile: 25%

High: 30%

Can be manually chosen. Less storage capacity results from a greater ECL.


Electronic items are marked with DataMatrix codes because small items don’t have that much space to print large barcodes

In the healthcare industry, the Data Matrix code is embedded in the packaging of a medical drug to prevent counterfeiting.

To stop food items from being packaged and dated inaccurately

Metallic labels with DataMatrix are being used as a UID to efficiently mark and track military assets.

Encode guidelines and recipes for users

Providing more details about the product

Auto-linking for guarantee registration and purchasing spare parts

Applicable and most reliable system for social exchange and payment

Mostly used in Advertisements, competitions, and Gaming events

When and where to use DataMatrix and QR Code?

Even though they are different, both codes may be used in very similar ways since they both offer choices to contain more data than a conventional 1D barcode and can be used to give more information for internal traceability and consumer marketing purposes. Each of them excels in its intended function.

Utilizing QR Code

QR codes have dominated the market for everyday, personal, and business process. They have applications in practically all facets of routine daily activity. Even now, it is regarded as a crucial component of marketing. QR codes can store simple text, addresses, e-mail, URL, links to apps and other different things.

Utilizing Data Matrix

However, data matrix codes must have more suited characteristics and functions due to industrial utilisation. When storing information in constrained areas, data matrix codes shine. Data matrix is a reliable alternative for tracking everything, from microscopic industrial components to electrical components.