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Advances in RFID Readers at Automate/ProMat 2019

Though the venerable RFID reader has been an effective tool in industrial environments for years, it hasn’t stopped companies from taking it to the next level.

RFID readers have become a standard device in industry to keep track of parts as well as in shipping to keep track of packages, and consumer operations to keep track of inventory. These devices have been around a long time, but at the Automate/Promat 2019 conference and show a few new products appeared.

Turck introduced its RFID offering with an economical UHF handheld device. The PD-IDENT provides customers with a lightweight, easy to use smartphone RFID reader system. The device houses a UHF antenna and connects to the user’s smartphone via the audio port. Additionally, Turck is providing customers with a basic, multipurpose Turck RFID app for their iOS and Android mobile devices (Windows support will be added in the future).

Fig. 1

1. Turck’s PD-IDENT UHF handheld device connects to a smartphone.

Measuring at 159 x 95 x 39 mm, the PD-IDENT easily fits in the palm of your hand and allows for the accommodation of a multitude of smartphone designs. The solution also comes equipped with a lithium-Ion battery, which will last up to two hours of active scanning on a charge. The free app can be downloaded from the Apple or Google Play Stores today by simply searching for “Turck RFID”. The PD-IDENT has an operating frequency of 865-928 MHz and follows EPCglobal Gen 2 and ISO 18000-6C. The user simply selects a region upon initiation of the device to conform to local radio communication requirements.

Fig. 2

2. Zebra Technologies long-range RFID reader.

The MC3390R long-range RFID handheld reader, from Zebra Technologies, brings a new level of efficiency and accuracy to inventory management, order fulfillment, cross-docking, and more. The integrated long-range antenna supports a best-in-class RFID read range, and coupled with Zebra’s high-performance ASIC radio technology, delivers higher throughput, so inventory counts can be accomplished more quickly and accurately. With Zebra’s signature rugged design, the MC3390R is built for your semi-industrial environments, yet is lightweight with the right ergonomics for all-day comfort. And the large touchscreen, physical keypad and Android OS deliver an intuitive and flexible platform for your RFID application needs today and tomorrow.

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