Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner review: Fastest, easiest way to track food points on your iPhone

Barcode Scanner is exactly what you need to easily find and enter PointsPlus values, and a great companion app to Weight Watchers Mobile for iPhone

If you're a Weight Watchers subscriber using Weight Watchers Mobile for iPhone, Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner is a great companion app for quickly calculating points values. Manually typing in fat, carbs, fiber, and protein can be a daunting task especially when grocery shopping. The barcode scanner app makes the task super simple and easier than ever, and is a great way to avoid impulse junk food purchases.

The biggest hurdle I've had to face since starting back up with Weight Watchers is grocery shopping. I've stuck with buying healthy foods but it can be a task to manually enter in the contents in order to decide whether or not a food I want is a healthy decision.

Sign in and Manage foods with WW Bardcode Scanner

The Weight Watches Barcode Scanner helps cut the time I spend looking for healthy foods in half while shopping. If you've used any type of QR code scanner on your iPhone you'll be right at home.

The first time you launch the app you'll be asked to sign into your Weight Watchers account. (You can choose for it to remember you in the Settings tab). Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner will load the scanner by default on launch. Then all you do is simply align a bar code and it scans away. It'll read it and tell you the PointsPlus value for a single serving. If it can't find an item, it'll allow you to manually enter in carbs, fat, fiber, and protein into the points calculator.

How to scan items with WW Barcode Scanner

If the app doesn't know the serving size it will simply say unknown. I've found most of the time that it calculates a points value but says unknown serving size, it's on items that are off-brand or measured in cups. You'll just need to follow the serving size on the box. If you can't get a good view of the bar code with the scanner, you can also choose to enter it in manually.

Add items directly to your tracker with WW Bardcode Scanner

Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner will also keep track of all the foods you've scanned under the Lists tab. Not only can you view the items you've added, you can add them to your favorites or your tracker directly from the application. Since Weight Watchers stores all your information online, you'll see the information added to your tracker via Weight Watchers Mobile as well next time you launch it.

There are a few apps in the app store that spit out Weight Watchers point values. I've found this one to be the best simply because it ties directly into your online tracker and integrates nicely as a companion app to the full Weight Watchers Mobile app. I don't have to jump out of whatever I'm using to scan bar codes and into Weight Watchers mobile and re-enter information. I just add the item I want directly to my tracker from Barcode Scanner and it's already there.

The good

  • It makes grocery shopping for healthier foods less of a task and not so overwhelming
  • Gives the option to add directly to your favorites and tracker which eliminates having to jump into another app
  • The overall UI is very similar to the Weight Watchers Mobile app so you'll feel right at home

The bad

  • You'll need a Weight Watchers subscription to utilize the application which may not be an option for some users as the cost may be more than they're willing to pay
  • You won't always find bar codes for many off brands
  • No auto-focus can be annoying at times when the app doesn't automatically center in on the bar code


If you're looking for an easier way to find PointsPlus values than typing in numbers each time, Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner is exactly what you're looking for and a great companion app to Weight Watchers Mobile for iPhone. While there are competitors out there, they just can't provide the tight integration into the Weight Watchers system that the official app can.

The fact that I can add things directly to my tracker and favorite items while I shop without jumping into multiple other apps makes it a hands down winner.

If Weight Watchers is your diet plan of choice, let us know your experiences in our Health and Fitness Forum and check out what the rest of our staff is picking to get healthier during Mobile Nations Fitness Month.

Weight Watchers Barcode Scanner is free to download but you'll need a Weight Watchers subscription in order to log in and start using it.

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Allyson Kazmucha

iMore senior editor from 2011 to 2015.