Whether the application has been pre- or post-manufacturing supply chain, radio frequency identification (RFID) technology has been long on promise, if short on actual, cost-effective implementations in the biopharmaceutical field. One reason has been the effort required to work out the bugs and reach an effective cost point for the component-level technology.
But RFID may be ready to step up to the systems level and begin delivering on its promise in a bigger way. Industry group AIM Global (the Association for Automatic Identification and Mobility) reports that attendees at the recent RFID Journal Live! show were able to witness the ascension of the technology to systems-level applications-its true gold in terms of value to enterprises.
"While there are still many applications requiring only a unique ID, the range and scope of RF-enabled products and services clearly indicate that the industry understands that RF tags are only one component in a larger IT system," writes AIM Global newsletter editor Bert Moore. "That means that it's not just important to identify an item but also to gather data about it-its location, condition, attributes, etc.-and then to manipulate, manage and benefit from that data."
Moore lists several products that fit the systems-level bill, from such well-known RFID technology names a s ODIN Technologies and Savi Technology, for example, and optimistically notes that they "illustrate the fact that RFID is moving into an important new phase-RFIT."
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