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QR Code for COVID

In WA we have a mandatory Q Code or form filling for most places. However, I and many other have serious issues trying to get it to work. Can anyone explain the process.
Is real-time access to a central database required, or is it an offline process?
Does it require Wifi? and/or Mobile data? If optional what are the pros and cons?
How should you set up your Android, I hardly ever use mobile data, mainly free Wifi, for mapping.

There are two separate but very frustrating issues:
Often it requests login and password, although the instructions only mention such a need for initial a/c setup or editing. As we are all told to have unique difficult to remember passwords, can be very embarrassing when you are at the front of a queue!
Secondly, it fails to recognise the Q Code image, so requests a re-scan, and again, and again…


Yes, QR Codes will not work without a phone or mobile device, or if there is no internet, wi-fi or mobile data connection.

It needs such connections to compare the scanned QR code against those created and registered.

If there is no internet access at the time of scanning, effectively the device is just taking a image/photo of the code and won’t work.

If you have a smart phone, deselect wifi and it should automatically connect. If not, ypu may need to turn on the mobile data function under networks.

This website may assist. …


If you download the app MyGov (or the WA* equivalent), you can create an account for use with Covid QR images. The password should be numerical (ie a four number PIN), which is simple to remember.
It took me a while to sort it out: I keep the app on the Home Page of my phone, for easy access. You just need to open the (already set up app), point it. It should show the name of the shop, cafe, etc & your check in. Hope this helps!

*I have attached a screenshot of the SA version


The app in some states (at least VicServices version) borders on being useless as it will not recognise QR codes that have not been registered with it. In lieu the QR code may have a code one can manually enter into the state app; most modern mobile phone cameras will recognise the QR codes although many require multiple steps of focusing on the QR code then touching a QR code symbol and then it offers to open the web site to enter your details; and other mobiles require an app.

Some cameras and apps just do it and other require a touch on the web site name when it gets displayed.

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That is what is supposed to happen. But it doesn’t, that is my point. App installed, a/c created, etc, yes and like you moved to home page, but frequently request login and your password(minimum 10 characters with all the normal variety). Repeated fails scanning.

This sounds just like my experience and of many others.

My understanding is that all businesses/services etc (in SA at least) have to apply/register to obtain a QR code: the onus is on them - which then has to be prominently displayed, and be accessible, on their premises. Plus - they also have to offer a manual sign in option.

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Is there somewhere to lodge a complaint about the poor function of the app?? In the meantime, do a manual sign in…

Thanks. I assumed it required an internet connection to a central database, so thank you for confirming that.

It was the frequent request to login with password that got me wondering if it was also using an optional offline line process. There must be many situations where that might happen.

What I still don’t understand is the Wifi vs Mobile data. If wifi is available, eg, Woolworth Free, then why these login and scan failing problems? I suspect they are two different causes.

The repeated scan failing suggests successful connection and app, but failure of pattern recognition?

Whereas the repeated login, suggests an app failure at the mobile end, eg, failed connection?

In Vic at least, the ‘non-Vicservices QR codes’ take one to certain specific registration sites, so they do need to be registered, and they are also prominently displayed and accessible. Places I have been also have manual sign ins but sometimes one has to ask.

My phone will not connect to my local Woolies free WiFi anymore, even after some trouble shooting, so I don’t bother with it. It should be like a mobile data or WiFi connection when it works. Check the icons on your phone for connection to the free Wifi and that it has internet service (eg no ‘?’ symbol by the Wifi symbol). The Woolies also often requires a login acknowledgement on each occasion of a connection. Miss that and you have Wifi but no internet service.


There shouldn’t be a difference. The QR scanning app won’t care whether the phone connects through the mobile network or wifi.

Check compatibility with your phone.

We also have a phone that trying to use the automatic QR code through the camera…it fails and won’t recognise the code.

This website also had some troubleshooting options for Android Phones:

As long as you don’t live in Queensland, it is likely that the business will have a range of registration options, like the manual sign in like @PhilT indicates. Maybe it might be best to use paper and pen if available if there is a conflict within the phone/QR app.


I received the following from the Qld Dept of Health after enquiring through the local State MP.

There is always an option according to the responsible Qld authority.

I’ve highlighted the most important statement. It’s not hard!
I’m assuming the average Qld business owner is keen to assist if properly informed.

Not hard! I wish!

My experience is the opposite, ie, single place to form fill, if you are regular QR code user, the unfamiliarity makes it slow, queues develop and many give up waiting, either ignoring it or go elsewhere.

All the States have got to get this QR Code working, totally free, easily, reliably, foolproof. The current haphazard nature is going to bring it down.

QR codes are not about how easy they are to use at the customer end, but the collection of data which makes its analysis easier for government contract tracers (and potentially businesses which collect the data and can potentially use it for marketing purposes).

The old paper and pen needs someone to transfer to an electronic format which is an addition cost and takes time. This is principally why the Qld government has moved away from support of pen and paper methods. Where we live (Tasmania), there is the flexibility to use electronic and paper/pen methods (note: The Tasmanian G2G PASS app developed for visitors to the state to use has a inbuild QR code reader to save visitors having a number of apps for the same functions). I am not sure the requirements in all other states as they are different, as you have rightly mentioned.

I hope they have amended their advice statement online to reflect this as well as the health directive about collecting contact tracing information…as it currently gives the business the discretion on the types of contact tracing methods they can use and can decline service if one choses not to use those nominated by the business.

Any information system and the more critical it is, must be reliable, foolproof, easy to use. It is pointless if it fails any one of the criteria.
This application of QR Code is absolutely critical.
My experience in shops is repeated frustration, both personally, and many others, hence, people when frustrated don’t say to themselves, like Aristotle, hand on chin, thoughtfully pondering the consequences, this is really important i must go out of my way to find a form to fill out, despite the queues. Instead they say F… It, and either abandon the process or go elsewhere.


My position on this is that it is a requirement on businesses to record contact details of those who visit. It is NOT a requirement on me to comply with their preferred method of doing this.
I have some simple cards in my wallet with my name and phone number. If I go somewhere and the business wants checkin, I hand over a card to a staff member and that is all they need.
Whether they just write the date and time and stick it in a jar, or whether they enter it into some online system I couldn’t care less. Not my problem.

It might be helpful. I’ve a copy saved of the clarification. That’s all I need.
It’s not a point of argument. It’s also reasonable and good business sense.

Anyone living in Qld who might need to resolve is able to write or contact Qld Health directly, or through their local State MP as I have and request the same clarification.

I’ll leave the complication of legal precedence to a lawyer. Other than a basic understanding that as the owner of the issued directive Qld Health’s interpretation of what they mean or intend has precedence.

In NSW, all QR codes are registered with the state government. If you download the Services NSW app & create an account, it will automatically fill in your name and details when you scan the QR code. You then can add any minor children (or adult friends who don’t have a smart phone) and checks you into the venue. When you leave, you open the app & go yo the Covid section and select current check in and check out.

Prior to the current system, venues would have their own QR codes, and there were a lot of concerns regarding privacy provisions with some providers. So the NSW govt made it mandatory to use their QR codes. It’s working well.


I’ve been told by a COVID-nazi at a venue that only dependents can be added. Adult friends who don’t have a suitable phone have to be done as a separate independent check-in transaction (which could be done on the same phone).

It is possible that some venues do not police this as rigorously, or not at all; or it is possible that this particular venue was mistaken.

This may be a deficiency of the Services NSW app as compared with the Services NSW web site?

I think the point of this is that dependents are assumed to be correctly contactable care-of and with the same contact details as the primary contact (parent or guardian), whereas random adults who don’t have a suitable phone should not be recorded as being contactable in the same way (unless perhaps those adults do live in the same household as the primary contact).

Most venues were using random third party providers to get their QR codes. Whether it is an improvement to use the NSW government depends on whether you trust (e.g. privacy concerns) the NSW government more or less than a random third party provider. :wink:

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For our own business we have had a similar question and have contacted the Tas government and they have indicated for Tasmania, that one person can be responsible for everyone uses the services provided by the business. In the time of contact tracing, they contact this responsible person and ask who else was with them.

We have paperwork to capture names and addresses of all and sundry, but have chose to only use these for a large group of friends/tour groups rather than the same family. We haven’t had any issues of our guests complying with this request.

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