Developing Your Own Solution
While embedded reader providers typically market to OEMs, end-user companies such as Disney and Interstate can develop their own solutions. Large companies with internal resources are more likely to do this on their own, while smaller firms tend to turn to systems integrators for help. The companies that are successful with these projects have a vision of what they want to achieve with RFID and bring in the resources they need, says ThingMagic's Power.
Companies "need the experience and resources to develop their own products and projects," says IDtronic's Kochendörfer. "Most of the end users we know are big enterprise companies. They have their own system integration departments for providing the resources to accomplish a project."
IDtronic offers development kits for customers. "Both our partners and end users can use them," Kochendörfer says. The starter kit comes with all necessary hardware, software and documentation, providing a way to more quickly develop solutions, he says.
ThingMagic also offers a development kit to help companies build RFID solutions based around its modules. In nearly all cases, the kits are used by OEMs, but the company is open to selling these kits to end-user companies as well, Power says. It's important that companies attempting to build their own solutions hire people who understand the technology and are experienced in building a complete system, she adds. If a company has an idea for using embedded readers to create a solution, the best way to proceed is to find a systems integrator that can help with the development process or build the in-house capabilities needed, Power says.