RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) Technology

1464 Words 6 Pages
Introduction RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology is a rapidly expanding technology being utilized more and more in our daily life. This paper will explain the history, uses, benefits, obstacles and innovations of RFID. I will examine why it is being employed by so many industries and what can limit its expansion.
RFID Background RFID types consist of either passive systems, which do not have an internal power source, or active systems, which have a power supply and can transmit a signal. RFID relies on magnetic fields in a chip to transmit data to a transmitter/reader, or interrogator, which sends a signal out and also processes what is sent back from the chip. It can be said that RFID got its inspiration from radar
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The major benefit of RFID over UPC barcode technology is that a direct line-of-sight reading is not necessary to obtain information from it. The RFID tag data can simply be obtained by getting within a prescribed proximity to the reader trying to detect it. Wal-Mart is a large retailer that is utilizing this technology. With RFID-enabled stores, Wal-Mart knows what cases have been delivered to a store, stocked in the backroom, or taken to the sales floor (Hardgrave et al., 2008). Stores can utilize RFID chips to calculate its current inventories, order product as it sells, and calculate its available warehouse and storage space. Hardgrave et al. go on to indicate Wal-Mart achieved a 21% reduction in out of stocks in the test stores (after taking account of improvements that would have occurred anyway) and a four-fold improvement in the test stores compared to the control stores. Rather than the more traditional method of scanning products or pallets individually, RFID can almost automatically track inventory and shelf space. This explains why so many stores are utilizing this technology …show more content…
As with all evolving technologies, new uses for RFID are constantly being invented and current practices are always evolving. One such example is mentioned by Ohkubo et al., the potential of smart refrigerators, which could automatically re-order groceries and alert users for product recalls and expiration date issues on foods. Just as major retailers use RFID for their inventory levels, consumers can use it to monitor their own inventory. Sensor technology. Sensor-network nodes include sensors to measure and report on properties (such as temperature and movement) of their environments (Borriello, 2005). It’s possible to utilize RFID eventually to monitor individuals for health issues and their location. While this is certainly possible, again one has to consider how much information they want to available, taking into account privacy concerns and intrusive governments. Who would want “Big Brother” knowing their location at all times? Borriello goes on to say one can imagine a world where there is an RFID tag in every manufactured object and even non-manufactured objects such as people, animals, and natural

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