What You Need to Know About Embedded RFID Readers

These small modules provide the performance of full-size readers and can be used to create next-generation solutions.
By Bob Violino
Aug 25, 2015

Disney is using self-serve checkout kiosks to track and manage its large inventory of costumes, worth roughly $100 million, worn by characters at its theme parks and on cruise ships. The RFID solution, developed in-house, has saved the company more than $1 million, increasing inventory accuracy and reducing labor.

Photo: iStockphoto
Interstate Batteries deployed smart storage and display racks to track and manage batteries at 2,000 dealerships in five U.S. markets. Interstate, which partnered with RFID provider Seeonic to develop the smart devices, says the solution eliminates the need to send personnel to dealerships to count battery stock, a process that was time-consuming and error-prone.

The University of California San Francisco Medical Center installed a refrigerated vending machine, Pantry, to dispense fresh food automatically. San-Francisco-based startup PantryLabs developed the RFID solution, which gives hospital personnel and visitors better dining options when the café closes at night.

What these three very different businesses have in common is that each RFID solution for tracking and managing tagged items, whether costumes, batteries or food, depends on a small RFID reader embedded in the kiosks, racks or vending machines. The companies are using ultrahigh-frequency embedded readers from ThingMagic, a division of Trimble.

Elatec RFID Systems and IDtronic are two other leading providers of embedded readers, also referred to as modules. Elatec offers low-frequency, high-frequency and Near-Field Communication embedded readers. IDtronic makes UHF embedded RFID readers, as well LF and HF versions.

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