Ultra-high radiofrequency identification – often abbreviated to UHF RFID – is an increasingly popular technology for asset management applications. UHF is one of the fastest growing RFID technologies and operates in the frequency band from 300 MHz to 3 GHz. This subsequently poses a range of choices to prospective end users including active versus passive UHF RFID, fixed or portable tag readers, conventional PDAs versus modern smart devices, and so on.
This post is designed to provide some clarity for those considering a new, fully integrated asset management solution suitable for the age of process digitalization. Here we will explore how a handheld UHF RFID tag reader coupled with passive RFID tags can help you streamline critical business processes.
The obvious and most pertinent difference between a fixed and a portable UHF tag reader is the former is static while the latter can be used on-the-go like a standard PDA or mobile tablet. A fixed system continuously collects data in real-time, providing always-on functionality with automated asset detection within a given range. By contrast, handheld UHF tag readers are designed for ease of transportability and precision in the field.
Fixed readers are useful for applications where assets follow a strict pattern, such as a production line but offer coverage limited to a specific area, such as a single point on a conveyor. Expanding coverage to include less fixed location will incur fairly extensive installation and equipment costs as multiple fixed readers will be required – which mitigates the return on investment for truly valuable asset management systems. Handheld UHF tag readers exceed fixed systems in their ease-of-integration and onboarding. Shift workers can carry handheld RFID tag readers across sites and operate them easily in all weather conditions. Most forefront easy usability and practicality with ergonomic designs that enable full operation with a single hand and without even removing gloves.
To truly achieve site wide asset tracking it is ideal to consider a combination of fixed and mobile UHF asset tracking solutions. This will ensure your facility has the flexibility to grow and adapt without heavy downtime whilst readers are relocated.
The exceptional flexibility of handheld UHF tag readers enables precision inventories of RFID tags at any number of discrete locations. A fixed reader is unable to track assets that are regularly moved or are stored across sites; thus, they cannot be used to replace time-consuming material selection jobs currently based on visual inspections and manual location tracking based on paper-based orders and serial numbers.
By tagging critical assets with passive UHF RFID tag readers and arming personnel with handheld UHF tag readers, you can eliminate bottlenecks associated with time-consuming and inefficient manual inspections. Additionally, UHF tag readers classified for safe use in hazardous areas enable results to be accessed in real-time as all wireless communications are inherently safe. Employees no longer must track assets or complete inventory counts by hand before going to an offsite, non-hazardous location to transfer data. The benefits of such a streamlining initiative speak for themselves.
Contact Extronics today for information on our iRFID500 handheld UHF tag reader, or for more information about potential use cases. Call us on +44 845 277 5000, or email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
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