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Amazon's QR-like 'SmileCodes' are the key to discounts and Lockers

They'll debut in the US next month.

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NurPhoto via Getty Images

Amazon will start rolling out its own version of QR codes, TechCrunch reports. Called SmileCodes, they function just like a typical QR code -- scan it with your phone and see where it leads -- but they'll only be scannable through the Amazon app and, naturally, they feature the very recognizable Amazon smile right in the center. According to TechCrunch, Amazon has been piloting them for the past few weeks in pop-up shops and Amazon Lockers in Europe and next month, SmileCodes will hit the US. They'll debut in magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Seventeen.

A number of companies have continued to utilize traditional QR codes or their own take on them. Spotify began offering its own codes last year as a way for users to share music with others while Pinterest's Pincodes allow brands to link users to more information and content. Similarly, Snapchat offers Snapcodes that let users share their profile as well as website links. Meanwhile, others, like Microsoft and Venmo, have stuck with more traditional QR codes to assist their customers in a variety of ways.

Amazon says SmileCodes will be used for things like getting a discount in Amazon Restaurant or retrieving your Amazon Locker code. To scan a code, tap the camera icon next to the search bar in the Amazon app. Then tap "see more" and the SmileCode scanner.

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