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Intelligent system locates best spot for RFID tags

21-Jun-2005

Intelligent Systems said it has released a suite of networking hardware and software that reduces the chance of radio frequency identification (RFID) detectors misreading tags on the production line.

"Intelligent Systems' networked approach provides unparalleled inventory visibility and enables retailers to move beyond mandates to capitalise on RFID's potential to solve criticalbusiness challenges at the store level, adding dollars directly to the bottom line," the company said in a press release. "Withthis solution, retailers can not only identify what inventory exists, but precisely where it resides in store, thereby reducing out of stock, increasing sales and better managing shrink."

The system includes ItemAuthority, software that provides a centralised electronic product code (EPC) management system and data repository that provides traceablity throughout the supply chain,the company said. It also includes:

 

  • ItemTrack, a distributed RFID management software that reads and writes RFID tags, associates RFID-enabled item, case and pallet and automates

     

    receiving and return operations;
  • IntelliManager, an in-store and enterprise-level network management application that enables device discovery, configuration monitoring and provides real time item-level data management and reporting; and
  • IntelliRouter and IntelliSwitches, Ethernet-based RF and data networking appliances that connect readers to RF antennas, allowing for the continuous reading of hundreds or thousands of RFID tags.

 

The company's networked approach to item-level RFID reading can support hundreds to thousands of antennas with as little as a single reader, the company said in a press release.

 

"By building antennas into standard fixtures, new or retrofit, and using a patent-pending approach to control them, Intelligent Systems dramatically reduces the number of electroniccomponents required, and thus the cost, as compared to conventional multiplexing approaches," the company said.

 

US retailers lose an estimated $50bn (€41bn) annually from due to running out of stock at critical moments and an additional $31bn (€25bn) annually due to shrinkage, Intelligent Systems claims.

 

"Studies have shown that a centralized item-level RFID solution such as this can increase sales and lower costs by reducing out-of-stock by as much as 50 per cent and cutting restockingtime by as much as 65 per cent," the company claims.

 

To help manufacturers integrate the suite with their own, IntelliServices provides a cross platform, web services RFID infrastructure. The system supports both US and European standards.

 

"Intelligent Systems' technology is frequency, tag and reader agnostic, allowing for seamless interoperability," the company stated. "Device management is fully compatiblewith the standards under development by EPCglobal and ISO, and its open architecture and Java platform allows for extended application functionality regardless of operating system."

 

Intelligent Systems says its system completes the RFID supply chain by tracking items from the store room to the store shelves and the point ofsale. By giving each item a unique identity and location, Intelligent Systems' suite allows retailers to monitor what products are selling and how quickly.

 

The Intelligent Systems solution has been selected for testing by Best Buy and Tesco. Intelligent Systems is a division of MeadWestvaco, which is in the business of constructing RFID networks.