RFID has been moving ahead but in the process it has been troubled by controversies and some technology limitations but we must realize that such problems are bound to occur when it’s being implemented rapidly. It has faced trouble with respect to the need for a specialized, single purpose reader but it is witnessing a change as advancements are occurring and it’s now possible to read in a direct manner by commercial Wi-Fi APs. This probably has made it possible to use RFID in warehouses, manufacturing plants and logistics and large facilities having Wi-Fi networks where there is a need to track asset and people movement. Aeroscout has come up with an approach where RFID is changed to another application on the Wi-Fi network and in combination with MobileView software increases the application of RFID. On the other hand Alanco Technologies is installing a 2.4 gigahertz TSI PRISM RFID inmate tracking technology at the Marion County Juvenile Detention Center in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Report were floating around that GPS would kick out RFID pretty soon but that doesn’t seem to happen in the near future as Savi Technology has received orders for more than 6,000 Savi active RFID reader modules from Comtech Mobile Datacom where Savi OEM active RFID reader modules will be embedded into Comtech’s satellite based movement tracking system on top of cabs offering customers two way communications. Even the US Army has placed orders worth $605.1million which includes mobile satellite receivers from Comtech having GPS and embedded RFID technologies along with satellite bandwidth and technical services.
NFC or Near Field Communication is being used which can connect devices over short distances and is generally meant for your cell phones. You must have seen a number of NFC cell phones being announced by a number of companies. NFC can be implemented for mobile payment, mobile ticketing, Bluetooth pairing, smart posters and can be put to a number of uses which is expected to increase over the years. NFC devices are active and they can read passive RFID tags and one of the examples in this respect is interactive advertising. With number of companies testing NFC phones I think you will have to throw your plastic money in the dustbin in the coming years. Sun Microsystems came up with Sun Java System RFID Software which is an infrastructure framework integrating data and RFID enabled devices into enterprise application system ranging from smaller to large deployments and can even be used for detecting any form of tamper and prevention of any crime. There is software called RFID Anywhere which allows Java programmers to use RFID for development of various projects supporting protocols and other devices too.
I probably feel that we are witnessing a subtle change with respect to RFID where it is slowly and steadily being adopted and that too in combination with other technologies. This can be regarded as a good start where in the coming days we will see this technology being used in combination with various other technologies too. We can say that a harmonious relationship is developing between RFID and various other technologies. Recently IBM even talked about using open standards in RFID solutions and for this purpose it is even in talks with number of hardware providers and this is expected to give the needed push to RFID.
What the need of the hour is that other technologies should come forward and embrace RFID so that its popularity can spread like wild fire. Once the technology starts trickling down to the masses (which has actually started to happen) we will see RFID getting the due respect and controversies will start to fade away. Even barcode took time to pick up but after getting universal standards it tasted a lot of commercial success.
This means we are going to see RFID being implemented in a number of places than ever before. I feel this is just the start, what do you think about it?