GAME's custom barcode blocks mobile price comparison apps
For those that own a smartphone, you are probably familiar with mobile price comparison apps such as RedLaser or ShopSavvy. If not, RedLaser is an app which lets you scan the barcode of an item and then it searches thousands of online and local retailers for the best price available for the scanned product. The app recognises a wide range of standard barcodes such as UPC, EAN, UPC-E and EAN-8. It will not however recognise barcodes produced by individual retailers and, following a tip from a Bitterwallet reader, the barcodes which can now be found on all of GAME's software.
It appears that GAME have printed a custom barcode on a sticker and placed it over the existing barcode. Scanning the new barcode with a price comparison app fails to find any online matches - you are simply shown this search result:
So, as you can see, there are no results because the barcode isn't readable by the app because it has been generated by GAME.
Whilst it is not in question that GAME can do exactly what they like in their own stores, it does seem to fly in the face of their strategy which was set out by them in February in which they believed that they would "become the first choice for customers gaming needs by making games more affordable by creating different ways to buy and own them".
If GAME are not being transparent enough to show exactly where they stand following a price comparison, does it really fill you with confidence that you are really getting the best deal after visiting a GAME store?
We could be entirely wrong and there may well be reasons for this secondary barcode. It would be interesting to find out from GAME why and when it was introduced and if they are aware of any other retailers who feel the need to do the same. Contact will be made with GAME to allow them to explain the reasons behind this custom barcode covering the original.
Please get in contact with us if you have any information or thoughts on this issue. Have you seen other retailers doing this? Drop us a line at [email protected]