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New Checkpoint Antennas to Bring RFID to Wide-Open Store Entryways

The company's NEO electronic article surveillance antenna platform and UF-1 under-floor antenna enable a longer read range for a wide entrance, with the ability to read very small tags, and to be less visible, for high-value goods stores and boutiques.
By Claire Swedberg
Feb 14, 2018

As brick-and-mortar stores compete with online shopping trends, they are becoming more creative in building open, inviting entrances with eye-catching merchandise to capture the interest of passing shoppers. But that design poses challenges for electronic article surveillance (EAS) and radio frequency identification (RFID), which are designed to protect stores from shrinkage, as well as track inventory.

Retail loss-prevention and merchandise-visibility technology company Checkpoint Systems has released two new products that it says will provide improved EAS functionality. The new offerings employ UHF RFID tag reads to help retailers manage inventory and shrinkage, while accommodating attractive, wide-open entrances.

Checkpoint Systems' NEO platform
The NEO, Checkpoint's new EAS antenna platform, is designed to provide better detection of RFID tags and is commercially available now, the company reports. The UF-1 is what the firm calls the first RFID solution deployed under a store's floor; the antenna is presently undergoing piloting at retail locations throughout the world.

The two solutions are designed to meet the needs of retailers looking to offer wide entrances. Many stores want an open, inviting entrance with plenty of space for movement—in some case, entry points as much as 18 to 20 feet wide, which is too wide for many standard RFID reader antennas to reliably interrogate tags.

Additionally, as a way to compete against online sales, brick-and-mortar stores are also trending toward placing attractive products near entrances to draw in consumer traffic and hopefully make subsequent purchases. This model raises challenges when it comes to EAS and ensuring that unpurchased goods are protected from leaving the premises, yet still enabling them to be displayed near the doorway without setting off an alert unless they are actually moving through that exit.

"Our customers had been asking for a high-performance point-of-exit system that could be concealed," says Carl Rysdon, Checkpoint Systems' VP of inventory-control solutions. That meant something that could not only be sensitive and accommodate wide doorways, but would be only minimally visible. The NEO solution that resulted is aimed at high-end retailers seeking attractive entrances.

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