RFIDs and the Changing Marketplace

RFIDs and the Changing Marketplace

Edward T. Chen (University of Massachusetts – Lowell, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9787-4.ch131
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How Rfids Are Changing The Way We Track Items

RFID grew largely in the early 2000s when Wal-Mart as the world’s largest retailer and the Department of Defense as the world’s largest supply chain operator began mandating their suppliers to use RFIDs for their product shipments. This mandate caused the economy of scale for RFIDs to decrease prices, and also led to an industry technology standard to use EPCglobal’s Electronic Product Code (EPC) standard (Guido, Mainetti, & Patrono, 2012; Wamba, Lefebvre, Bendavid, & Lefebvre, 2008). Previously, the technology was stifled by a lack of uniformity between different RFID manufacturers’ software platform causing customers to acquire different receivers to detect and use different RFIDs. These advances are expected to continue the growth of the use of RFIDs across industries. Das and Harrop (2014) at IDTechEx find that the total RFID market in 2014 is worth $8.89 billion, up from $7.77 billion in 2013 and $6.96 billion in 2012. This includes tags, readers and software/services for RFID cards, labels, fobs and all other form factors. IDTechEx forecast that to rise to $27.31 billion in 2024. Thus, we can see the adoption of RFIDs in businesses is increased significantly in the past three years. It is expected to continue to grow significantly, so that someday it will be more prevalent than bar codes (Hunt, Puglia, & Puglia, 2007).

Businesses are demanding that their suppliers use RFIDs to track incoming shipments as it allows the organizations to make real-time decisions for inventory management and control. When businesses can project what time their supplies will arrive, they can coordinate to make business decisions based on projected inventory. The implementation of RFIDs helps things such as manufacturing scheduling, floor layouts, and even sales. For instances, whenever there is a projected big shipment arriving, that room must be made available in the warehouse (Sharifi, et al., 2013; Wamba & Chatfield, 2011).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID): Radio frequency identification, denoting technologies that use radio waves to identify people or objects carrying encoded microchips.

Accuracy: Area of information control dealing with the correctness of information or lack of errors in information.

RFID Tagging: An ID system that uses small radio frequency identification devices for identification and tracking purposes. An RFID tagging system includes the tag itself, a read/write device, and a host system application for data collection, processing, and transmission.

Accessibility: Area of information control involved with the ability to obtain data.

Personally Identifiable Information (PII): Any data that could potentially identify a specific individual. Any information that can be used to distinguish one person from another and can be used for de-anonymizing anonymous data can be considered PII.

RFID Reader: A transmitter/receiver that reads the contents of RFID tags in the vicinity. Also called an “RFID interrogator.”

Supply Chain Management (SCM) System: System that manages the integrated supply chain; process are linked across companies with a companion process at a customer or supplier.

Privacy: Area of information control involved with the right to be left alone; involved with the protections from intrusion and information gathering by others; an individuals’ ability to personally control information about themselves.

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