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iBARCODEiBARCODE, an iPhone price comparison app, launched today. It’s made by Starnberg, Germany-based Apnoti, which touts the app as the end of shop-to-shop price comparison. But iBARCODE is being released in to a market full of similar services. Milo.com, for example, compares pricing in nearby stores with real-time inventory updates. And Amazon.com allows multiple sellers to compete through Amazon’s front end.

So what does iBARCODE do differently? It shows you the exact product you scanned and how much you could buy it for in seconds. Other services show you a range of products fitting your description, most of which you haven’t seen in person.

If I’m already out shopping, iBARCODE presents me with a shortcut. Instead of reading search results, I can find my product on a shelf and scan it with my iPhone. The viewfinder takes a picture of the bar code, determines the exact product it represents and shows me results for that product in my area. This is what Apnoti is saying, anyway.

The boon is that I can see, touch and if I wanted, smell the item in question before I run off to the store based on price. Instead of finding the deal and seeing if I like it, I find the product I want and then look for a deal on it.

Milo.com, in comparison, lets me search local stores from home. I type “sheets” in to the search, refine it to mean household products (not printer sheets) and voila — local business results for bed sheets, sortable by price.

Apnoti.com was founded in October of 2008. The company claims over 10,000 affiliated online shops and 65 million products available in each search.

For those with iPhones,  iBARCODE could be a helpful tool allowing shoppers to find the best prices on the product they want with less digital fiddling. The app can be had for $0.99 through the iPhone app store.


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