Companies Find Workarounds for RFID Roadblocks
Sophisticated RFID readers can be foiled by, well, foil, but RFID trials at Gillette, Philip Morris and Kimberly-Clark are finding ways around that.Retailers and consumer goods manufacturers experimenting with RFID are still seeing higher-than-expected error rates, but they are starting to work out low-tech workarounds, according to a major European RFID analyst company that has analyzed about 1,400 recent radio-frequency identification trials. The most common problem has been reader interference coming from either metal or fluid, which was a major problem for The Gillette Co. in trying to scan its razor blades, said Raghu Das, a managing director at IDTechEx Ltd., which created the report. Even Philip Morris International Inc. found that the thin metal on the paper wrapping it uses to surround certain cigarettes was causing problems, Das said.
He added that the tobacco giant admitted that the paperperceived as enhancing freshnessdidnt serve any purpose, but that it would have been too expensive to redo the packaging.