I'm designing an app, and someone has defined that they want the user to login using a QR code in their mobiles and show them in a camera, that will recognise them and allow them to access.

Our persona is an elder woman, from 60 to 80, not very comfortable with technology. And I'm pretty scared that users will drop if they don't understand the flow:

1.Open the app 2.Locate the QR 3.Show it to the camera.

So, do we have data about how elder users use QR's? (In my company user testing it's not well recieved, so unfortunately we can't make test)


  • 2
    Very good question. I have no data but I bet no one uses it considering the QR code should also have low use through youngs. Sep 23, 2019 at 16:03
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    @BraDev it's different if you are explicitly told to do so. But ask this: how many people use (or even know of) Messenger's code-scanning feature?
    – jaskij
    Sep 24, 2019 at 7:28
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    @BraDev The QR code is used a lot in Asian countries. Take a look at uqr.me/qr-code-generator/blog/…
    – Kevin M.
    Sep 24, 2019 at 8:55
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    My observation of users in waiting rooms here in the UK is that the 60-70 year olds are happily using smartphones and tablets. Tablets have been around and affordable for 7-10 years so users in their 50s can have learnt how to use them. It's the generation who are 10 years older ( so now 70-80) who are less likely to have "grown up with computers".
    – PhillipW
    Sep 24, 2019 at 10:00
  • @BraDev Thanks :) My doubt about "No one uses it" increased when I readed some articles telling that the use of Qrs is increasing, but still I wanted to check the behavior of older people blog.beaconstac.com/2019/02/why-2019-is-the-year-of-qr-codes Sep 25, 2019 at 6:17

2 Answers 2


I found some statistics from Comscore, 14 Million Americans Scanned QR Codes on their Mobile Phones in June 2011. The article is a bit old, but I think it is still relevant.

A demographic analysis of those who scanned a QR code with their mobile phone in June revealed an audience that was more likely to be male, young to middle-age and upper income. Men were 25 percent more likely (index of 125) than the average mobile user to scan QR codes, representing 60.5 percent of the scanning audience.

Elderly people represented only 3% of the audience.

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    I'd guess that this statistic is less relevant than you might think. At least in germany there was a peak at about 2010-2012 according to the visibility on the streets. Nowadays there gone, you need some effort to find one. One of the reasons is of course the regression of usage.
    – chrisbergr
    Feb 5, 2020 at 15:02
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    @chrisbergr this is an interesting observation, and I wonder what caused the decline in usage in Germany whereas in China it is very common place these days.
    – Michael Lai
    Feb 5, 2020 at 22:46
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    @MichaelLai I'd guess that the situation in china is a result of the success story of WeChat. I mean you can do everything with it, even payments. Combined with QR codes this is a very powerful tool. There is nothing like this in Germany. In 2013 there war a official warning against the usage of QR codes from a Federal Ministry (Link is down). There was so much abuse around like linking to viruses etc. The trust was gone. Unfortunately, because it is such a helpfull thing, at least since it is a default build in into the iphone camera.
    – chrisbergr
    Feb 6, 2020 at 8:08

Do we have any data about how everyone uses QR's?

And I'm pretty scared that users will drop if they don't understand the flow

This is valid for any age group, my parents are the late 50s and they wouldn't know how to use QR code. You will never find out how good your ideas are if you don't test them out. Without a test, any statistics are just numbers and you are doing guesswork.

In my company user testing it's not well received, so, unfortunately, we can't make test

I think this is the most common excuse for designers to hide behind (believe me I been there and said pretty much the same). Nothing stops you from creating prototypes and testing with friends and family, people in the cafes even on the streets, you will be surprised how much people will be interested also how much you will learn.

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